Nigeria is going through a tough political transition. The president has been absent from office since November due to health problems, and the vice-president took over. But the interim leader is challenged by those who question the legality of his decisions.
Nigeria continues to face political uncertainty due to the ongoing absence of President Umaru Yar'Adua from office. Yar'Adua has not formally transferred power to Vice-President Goodluck Jonathan, triggering debate over the legality of government decisions.
Yar'Adua has been in the Saudi Arabia port of Jeddah since November receiving treatment for a heart condition. On Wednesday, the government asked the president to give a formal notice on his health condition. And they also said that he was fit to return to his duties.
According to the Nigerian constitution, if the president is unable to perform the duties or goes on vacation, then the vice-president takes over until the president returns.
But the political allies of Yar’Adua are reluctant to have Jonathan in power, even temporarily.
[Philip Obasi, Accountant]: (Male, English)
"It is just unfortunate that a country like Nigeria should be facing such a problem, simply because we don't have....we have a constitution but we don't have people who want the constitution to be upheld."
Analysts also say too many of Nigeria's influential politicians are benefiting from the status quo. The cabinet consists largely of Yar'Adua appointees who may lose their jobs if he goes.
The situation is complicated by an unwritten agreement among the political elite that power should rotate every two presidential terms between the Muslim north and predominantly Christian south.
The country feared a military take-over during Yar’Adua’s absence. But the army reassured the people that it would maintain peace.