Senior Special Assistant to the President on Public Communication, Dr. Doyin Okupe, stated this at a press briefing in Abuja.
This is coming after persistent threat by members of the National Assembly, the House of Reps in particular, to impeach the President.
Okupe said there was no way there wouldn’t be friction between the executive and the legislature but cautioned that every disagreement should not lead to impeachment threat.
According ti him, “We would want to appeal to our respected lawmakers to sheathe their swords. They should stop threatening the President with impeachment every time there is a disagreement.
“They should allow the temperature of the polity to come down. We will continue to have executive/legislative conflict, but we should continue to allow maturity to come in.
“Yes, the legislature has the power to impeach, but we should not be flaunting this every time.
“We should forget about impeachment in order to build this democracy; conflict will always be there, but we must manage it.”
Asked why it was difficult for the President to implement the resolutions passed by the National Assembly, Okupe said the action of the President was not meant to spite the lawmakers.
He also called on Nigerians to stop disparaging the office of the President.
Okupe said this in reaction to the comments credited to the Convener, Save Nigeria Group, Pastor Tunde Bakare, describing Jonathan’s condemnation of the protest that greeted the January 1 removal of subsidy on petrol as “bunkum”.
Jonathan had said the protest was sponsored by unnamed people, and that Nigerians were not totally against the policy of government.
But both Bakare and Nobel Laureate Prof. Wole Soyinka condemned the President’s statement.
While Bakare described it as “bunkum”, Soyinka said it had shown that the President “is lamentably alienated from the true pulse of the nation and that he was suffering from bad conscience”.
Okupe said, “The office of the President deserves respect. To say the President is suffering from bad conscience as stated by Prof. Soyinka is wrong.
“His (Jonathan’s) action on the N5,000 note showed that he loves Nigerians and he is not alienated from them.
“We do not need to desecrate the office of the President. It is uncivil for Bakare to say that the President’s comment is bunkum, which means nonsense.
“We will not accept that; we won’t allow anyone to be insulting the office of the President. Bakare himself can be President tomorrow.”