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Exclusive: Buhari Set To Extend ‘Private Visit’ To London On Health Grounds |The Republican News

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Inside sources in the Presidency who spoke with SaharaReporters said there is a high likelihood of the President extending his stay on the orders of his doctors.

 

President Muhammadu Buhari may not return to the country on Sunday May 5 as scheduled due to health complications.

Inside sources in the Presidency who spoke with SaharaReporters said there is a high likelihood of the President extending his stay on the orders of his doctors.

President Muhammadu Buhari had travelled to the United Kingdom on April25 for what the presidency described as a “private visit”.

Constitutional Breach

Shortly after his announcement, Buhari’s departure sparked a constitutional debate over his refusal to notify the National Assembly of his planned absence and hand over to Vice President Yemi Osinbajo.

In 2016, he had handed over to Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo after notifying the senate of his 10-day visit to the United Kingdom where he claimed he would be seeing an Ear, Nose and Throat specialist over a persistent ear infection.

By refusing to hand over to the Vice President, Buhari breached Section 145 (1) and (2) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended) which states that:

“Whenever the President is proceeding on vacation or is otherwise unable to discharge the functions of his Office, he shall transmit a written declaration to the President of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives to that effect, and until he transmits to them a written declaration to the contrary, the Vice-President shall perform the functions of the President as Acting President.

“In the event that the President is unable or fails to transmit the written declaration mentioned in subsection (1) of this section within 21 days, the National Assembly shall, by a resolution made by a simple majority of the vote of each House of the National Assembly, mandate the Vice-President to perform the functions of the office of the President as Acting President until the President transmits a letter to the President of the Senate and Speaker of the House of Representatives that he is now available to resume his functions as President.”

Widespread National Anger
In 2017 during his prolonged absence, Nigerian protesters in Lagos, Abuja and the UK protested after mobilizing using the hashtag #ResumeOrResign demanded that President Muhammadu Buhari either resume his job as president or resign, after more than 90 days of absence.

Demonstrators rallied for three days, demanding action by the government, with many claiming Buhari’s absence is unacceptable and harmful for the country.

The demonstrations, led by prominent activists such as Omoyele Sowore, Charles Oputa and Deji Adeyanju forced the President to return home.

His most recent trip is also causing widespread anger from Nigerians, who accuse him of insensitivity to the plight of Nigerians, especially in the wake of rising kidnapping and banditry in the country.

Buhari’s Crohns Disease
Contrary to claims that the President suffers an ear infection, SaharaReporters in 2017 authoritatively confirmed that Buhari is battling a persistent “internal organ” problem.

The source attributed the President’s inability to eat as well as his progressive loss of weight to Crohn’s Disease, a medical condition that has affected his digestive system.

According to the source, Buhari had had parts of his colon removed in 2013 and also had another operation to have hemorrhoids, swollen veins near the human rectum, removed in 2016 in London during one of his secret trips to seek urgent medical treatment.

Timeline Of Medical Visits
Since his inauguration in 2015, President Buhari has embarked on no less than eight trips to the UK, mostly to cater to his health.

On the February 5, 2016, he embarked on a six-day medical vacation to London. Shortly after, on the June 6, 2016, he took to the skies for a 10-day medical vacation to deal with a “persistent ear infection”.

Again on January 19, 2017, he took off to London again on a medical vacation and on February 5, 2017, he wrote to the National Assembly, asking lawmakers to extend his London medical leave.

He returned on the March 10, 2017 but did not resume work immediately before jetting out two months later on May 7, 2017 for another medical vacation that lasted 104 days.

President Buhari returned in and worked from home August 19, 2017.

He again flew out in May 8, 2018 for a ‘private visit’.

(Source: Sahara reporters)

 

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Wild Jubilation In Abuja, Other Places As Buhari Returns From Sick Vacation |RN

Olalekan Adetayo, Ifeanyi Onuba, Okechukwu Nnodim and Olaide Oyelude

There was wild jubilation in Abuja, Katsina and other parts of the country on Saturday as President Muhammadu Buhari returned to the country from London, the United Kingdom where he had been for medical treatment since May 7.

Security operatives had a hectic time controlling the crowd as the President’s long motorcade moved from the Presidential Wing of the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja to the Presidential Villa.

Related: Buhari Will Shock Nigerians When He Returns, Says Tam David West |RN

Many residents of the Federal Capital Territory thronged the major roads from the airport to catch a glimpse of the President, who had spent 104 days outside Nigeria.

Some of them were singing, dancing with banners of the President’s portraits in hand, while others jostled to take photographs of the President’s convoy with their mobile phones.

The presidential aircraft that conveyed Buhari landed at the airport at 4.35pm to the excitement of all those present.

The aircraft then taxied to the tarmac amidst music played by the Guards Brigade along with a cultural troupe performing at the airport.

The President disembarked from the aircraft, NAF 001, at 4.48pm. He was received by top government officials led by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo.

Decked in a brown kaftan, Buhari mounted a rostrum and saluted the guard of honour.

He did not inspect the guard of honour before proceeding to acknowledge cheers from well-wishers and the dancers.

He, thereafter, got into his official car to be driven to the Presidential Villa.

The airport was at a standstill as workers made frantic efforts to get a glimpse of him.

Airport roads shut, travellers, commuters stranded

Hundreds of workers, travellers and other airport users were stranded at the airport following the closure of roads in the area.

Many travellers and other people at the airport were forced to wait, as security operatives cleared dignitaries who had come to welcome the President.

Despite the closure of roads and the delay of the travellers at the airport, many of them were excited to see the President back in the country.

On roads leading to the airport were hundreds of people singing and dancing, as they welcomed Buhari.

There were chants of “Sai baba!” as some youths performed some stunts with their vehicles and motorbikes.

Other groups of people displayed placards with messages like: “Welcome home, dear President”; “Sai Baba”; and “We love Buhari” as they struggled to catch a glimpse of the President.

There were other excited Nigerians who moved closer to the car the President was riding in, screaming, “Sai baba!” as they danced, following the slowly moving convoy of Buhari.

Earlier, there was commotion at the commercial wing of the NAIA as air passengers and workers rushed out in excitement to see Buhari immediately his aircraft touched down.

Those at the commercial terminals tried to push their way through to the tarmac but were stopped by security officials and personnel of the Federal Airports Authority.

“I would have loved to see at least his plane, because I know there’s no way I can see him from this departure terminal,” Okeke Benny, a Lagos-bound passenger said.

Daura residents jubilate

Residents of Daura – Buhari’s hometown – in Katsina State on Saturday evening suspended various activities they were engaged in to watch the President return to the country on television.

The residents who had waited patiently for the news of the arrival of the President, thereafter, began to dance as they sang to praise him.

In a carnival-like manner, some residents took to the streets in their vehicles and motorbikes; some drove around the town singing praises to God for bringing Buhari back to the country hale and hearty.

Business activities remained paralysed in major commercial areas, including Sabonline, Kofa-kaoran, Mani Road, Nagogo Road, and Ibrahim Babangida Way, in Katsina as many traders stayed glue to the TV.

Some youths were also seen in places like Rafindadi, Kofar Kwaya, Kofar Durbi and Kofar Sauri, also in Katsina singing Buhari’s praises and going from one place to the other.

A Daura resident, Shuaibu Haruna, said, “I am happy. At least, we shall all see our President and this will further shame those branding rumours around about him.”

Another resident, Hassan Dajuma, said, “You know, some people have cashed in on President Buhari’s absence to unnecessarily heat up the polity. Now, with his return, I foresee normalcy. I am happy for him; I am happy for our great country over his return.”

Speaking on Buhari’s return to the country, the Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, told reporters at the airport that Buhari’s return had nothing to do with the #ReturnOrResign protests that took place in Nigeria and London.

Adesina said he and some presidential aides knew about his return some days back.

Adesina had earlier on Saturday issued a statement in which he announced that Buhari would return to the country later in the day and address Nigerians through a national broadcast on Monday.

The statement read, “President Buhari is expected to speak to Nigerians in a broadcast by 7 am on Monday, August 21, 2017. He thanks, all Nigerians who have prayed ceaselessly for his recovery and well-being since the beginning of the health challenge.” (Punchng.com)

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President Buhari Returns After 107 Days Of Sick Vacation In London (Video)|RN

By Ike A. Offor,

President Muhammadu Buhari’s Nigerian Airforce flight touched down today, 19 August at Nnamdi Azikiwe international airport at 4:45 pm and he were received by the Acting President Prof. Yemi Osnbajo in the company of the service chiefs.

Buhari who has been away for 107 days for medical treatment in London, United Kingdom has been speculated by some folks from some quarters to be dead and some said that he was on a life-support machine.

The barrages of speculations about him and his ailment and how he turned out to be hale and hearty are something of a mixed feeling for some who wished or claimed that he was dead or on a life-support machine.

While his supporters will rejoice for his return, some critics will still be angered by his prolonged sick vacation without addressing the country or being specific on revealing his ailment, which many demanded to know.

Many photos that were released while he was away were claimed by the critics to be fake or photoshopped, and some of those critics who stood out from the rest are Gov. Ayodele Fayose of Ekiti state and Mr Femi Fani-Kayode.

His supporters have said that Buhari’s return will strengthen the economy and security in the country, but some argued that his absence actually helped the economy and his presence before he left for London has not made the security in the country any better.

While Buhari was away, the Naira, the national currency got stronger against the dollars, which is why some have argued for Yemi Osinbajo to be made the president since him taking over the seat of leadership, has helped the economy than when Buhari is in charge.

Above all, it is good to have President Buhari back, and a great news for his family too and the country at large.

We hope his presence would check the menaces of both Boko Haram and Fulani herdsmen and other security issues. Though some argued already that while he was here before leaving for London, the Fulani herdsmen operated without hindrance and the Boko haram proliferated and killed many.

Another thing is whether the President would address the issues of secessions by various regions and groups within the country. Nnamdi Kanu was released in his absence and has been seen as violating his bail conditions and it would be interesting to see if he takes action on that or he would allow him to carry on with his activities with Biafra secession.

Kanu has called for an election boycott in Anambra gubernatorial election, which comes up on November 18 and he has inaugurated the Biafran Secret Sevice a few days ago.

So, it will be interesting to see how Buhari reacts to these issues and his next line of actions. His action in imprisoning Nnamdi Kanu and disobeying court orders to release him unconditionally resulted in his fame around the world and many now think to stem such fame he must allow him to continue unhindered.

So, many will be watching to see what Muhammadu Buhari actions will be once he resumes duties in the next coming days.

 

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Supporters And Anti-Buhari Protesters Clash In Abuja |The Republican News

 •Beneficiaries of old order fighting back  –Presidency

From Juliana Taiwo-Obalonye, Abuja

Supporters of President Muhammadu Buhari, under the umbrella of Coalition for Good Governance and Change Initiative, yesterday began a counter protest in Abuja to renew their support for the ailing president. 

The protesters, mostly women and young ladies, were armed with placards bearing several inscriptions and were chanting solidarity songs for the president. 

Their actions, Daily Sun learnt was in swift response to the protest by some other coalitions led by popular musician, Charles Oputa, better known as Charlyboy, and Prince Deji Adeyanju, against the President Buhari’s, continued to stay out of the country.  Yesterday’s protests led to the fracas over alleged N1,500 hand-out meant for each member of one of the pro-Buhari groups.

Trouble started shortly after the Coalition for Good Governance and Change Initiative (CGGCI) ended its march and participants were discreetly directed to meet coordinators that invited them for the hand-out.

Related: Security Operatives Clampdown, Injure Anti-Buhari Protesters |The Republican News

Daily Sun gathered that some coordinators got money from the organisers and wanted to short change some protesters, who quickly reacted somewhat violently.

Coordinator of protesters from Jabi, identified as Mama Arthur, who brought 30 persons had hectic period managing her contingent as most of them insisted they must be given N1,500 each as others. The situation almost went out of hand when two boys named Paschal and Isibor made away with money meant for some of their colleagues.

Meanwhile, the Charlyboy group continued their sit out yesterday, insisting on their demand that the president should return to the country and resume official duties or resign his position. 

Regardless, the Presidency has described the “return or resign” agitation as an illegal assembly stealthily organised to deliver a body blow to the war against corruption. It said the beneficiaries of the old order are fighting back, warning that attempts to derail the war against corruption using subterfuge and bluff will not succeed.

Addressing members of a pro-Buhari group yesterday, the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu said: “It might be taken for granted that the beneficiaries of the old order are fighting back. We have been warned that corruption will fight back. They want to distract us. But what the Acting President wants to assure patriotic citizens is that the government will not bend.”

Police personnel had, on Tuesday, descended on the anti-Buhari protesters with tear gas, flogged them with the popular artist, Charly Boy badly brutalised by the security operatives. The police were also reported to have smashed journalists’ cameras in the process. The brutality meted to the protesters has received wide condemnation. Although the Senate said the president had not violated the Constitution by his long stay in London for medical consultation, having transmitted power to his deputy, the legislative Red Chamber described the action of the police as a violation of the fundamental human rights of the protesters.

The Senate in a statement said: “It is not right for the police to brutalise the people as they reportedly did yesterday (Tuesday). While we are opposed to the subject of the protest, the Senate acknowledges the fact that the protesters have the constitutional right to gather and express their views in a manner that will not breach public peace, order and tranquillity.

“Since the ‘Our-Mumu-Don-Do’ protesters did not conduct themselves in such a manner as to disturb the public peace, it is not right for the police to brutalise the people as they reportedly did.”

President Buhari has been in London hospital for the past 94 days receiving treatment for an undisclosed ailment.  (The Sun)

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Senate Says Ailing Buhari Has Not Violated Any Law |The Republican News

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The Nigerian Senate

From Fred Itua, Abuja and Gyang Bere, Jos

The Senate, yesterday, came out in stout defence of ailing President Muhammadu Buhari, saying he has not violated any known laws of the country.

It also cautioned sponsors and participants in the ongoing protests by a coalition of civil society organisations, operating under the aegis of #OurMumuDonDo and demanding the resignation of President Buhari over his medical vacation in the United Kingdom, to stop heating up the polity with their unreasonable demands.

In a statement signed by its spokesman, Sabi Abdullahi, the Senate said the protesters were only creating unnecessary tension in the country and seeking to divert the attention of the Presidency from the economic and security issues, which were being tackled with vigour.

It noted that Buhari had complied with the provisions of the Constitution, which stipulated that he must hand over to the vice president and duly inform the two chambers of the legislature about his medical vacation.

“The president has broken no law and therefore we do not see any justification for this diversion and noise making. The sponsors are merely seeking cheap publicity at the expense of the peace of Nigeria. We, in the National Assembly, are satisfied that there is no vacuum. The Federal Government is working. Acting President Yemi Osinbajo is providing the required leadership. So, there is no reason for the protests.

“All Nigerians now should focus on praying for the safe return of the president. We in the Senate are happy about the report by the governors and party leaders who recently visited President Buhari in London and we know he will soon return to continue to provide leadership to our people and the rest of Africa.

“We, therefore, call on the protesters to stop all these demonstrations and let their sense of patriotism overshadow the zeal for activism by joining other Nigerians to pray for the President, the acting President and Nigeria as a country at this critical period,” the senate stated.

Meanwhile, a cleric, Prophet Isa El-Buba has accused the kitchen cabinet of Buhari of restricting Osinbajo from taking major decisions that would better the lots of Nigerians.

He advised Buhari to give critical attention to his ill-health and not hurry back home until he is fully certified by his medical doctor.

Prophet El-Buba, who stated this in Jos during a press conference, said if the acting president is given full capacity to act without restrain, Nigeria would transform into an enviable nation in less than one year.

“There is no need for President Buhari to rush back if he is not fully recovered, he should take the time to attend to his health and give the acting president full capacity to act without the interference of certain personalities from the cabinet.

“From my observation, the acting president has been slow down by certain powers bent on holding the country to ransom. He started at a very high speed towards economic recovery that had placed the country on hardship.

“He had visited market women to know the actual cost of foodstuff, he visited Niger Delta to address the militancy problem and currently, he is addressing the challenges of insecurity in Kaduna State and agitation for secession by some interest groups, but some people are not happy with the steps he has taken so far, they felt he is stealing the show from the president.”

El-Buba flayed some individuals who he claimed were working round the clock to puncture Osinbajo’s political will to place Nigeria on the track of steady growth and development.

He said such elements should be identified and showed the way out from the Presidency. (The Sun)

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BREAKING: Resume Or Resign, Charley Boy, CSOs Tell Buhari In Protest |RN

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A coalition of Civil Society and pro democracy group, under the aegis of Concerned Nigerians, have staged a peaceful protest march, in Abuja, asking ailing Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari to resume or resign his office after he has spent 92 days in London for medical treatment without a definite date for return to work.

The placard carrying protesters converged at the Unity Fountain near Transcorp Hilton with the following inscriptions; “Resume or Resign Nigerians say enough is enough”; “Buhari ! Where are you?” “We Are Tired of Being Enslaved in Our Country,” “Our Mumu Don Do”; “Buhari Called For Impeachment When Yar’adua Was Sick, Now We Are Calling For Same.”

Heavily armed mobile police accompanied the protesters as they are moving toward the gate of the Presidential Villa where they vowed to occupy until the President accede to their demands.

The protest was led by flamboyant musician, Charles Oputa aka Charly Boy and the convener Deji Adeyanju. Adeyanju noted that it regretted the failure of the leadership of the National Assembly to launch an investigation or set up a panel to look into the true status of the President Buhari’s health, adding the group believes the legislators have been compromised and are working with an infamous cabal in the executive branch against the Nigerian people.

He explained that the leadership of the National Assembly must choose between the Nigerian people and the cabal. “90 days is too long for a president to be away from his country without any explanation to the people that voted him into office.

The group insisted that if Mr. Buhari has become incapacitated, he should do the honorable thing and resign because he cannot continue to hold the country to ransom noting that a group of few people in the government have taken the advantage of the president’s ill health to loot the treasury with impunity.

“We hereby demand that the National Assembly invoke Section 144 sub Section 4 of the Nigerian Constitution and direct the setting up of a medical panel in conjunction with the Acting President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo to ascertain whether the President is incapacitated,”  he stated.

The group vowed to continue with the daily sit- out irrespective of the intimidation from the police. (SaharaReporters)

Details later…

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Knocks As Ortom Says President Buhari’s Illness Makes Nigeria Sick |RN

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Olalekan Adetayo, Adelani Adepegba and Olaleye Aluko

The Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom, has drawn the ire of Nigerians for saying that with President Muhammadu Buhari’s sickness, the nation and indeed all Nigerians are sick.

He said he and six of his colleagues that visited the ailing President in London last week advised the Nigerian leader not to be in a hurry to return to the country.

He said the governors told Buhari, who left the country on May 7, 2017, to stay back in the British capital until he was completely healed.

Ortom stated this on Thursday in an interview with State House correspondents at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, amid growing speculations that the President was due back in the country.

The governor was part of the delegation of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum that visited the President last week.

Others on the delegation were Abdullazeez Yari (Zamfara); Dave Umahi (Ebonyi); Umar Ganduje (Kano);  Kashim Shettima (Borno); Udom Emmanuel (Akwa Ibom); and Abiola Ajimobi (Oyo).

Ortom said Buhari was mentally alert throughout the period the governors spent with him, adding that their discussion centred on security and happenings in various states of the country.

He urged Nigerians to continue to pray for the Nigerian leader, saying, “Once the President is sick, the whole country is sick.”

He said, “I was the first person that initiated prayers and I shouted hallelujah when I saw him because God has answered my prayers. I urge both Christians and Muslims to pray for Mr President because that is our duty.

“There is no power without God’s ordination. So those of us who are subjects should continue to pray. We should not be castigating Mr President or be wishing him evil.

“We should be praying for him. If Mr President is sick, it means all of us are sick; the whole country is sick. It is our responsibility to pray that Mr President gets well so that our country too will be well.

“Mr President is doing well. When we saw him, he was not in a wheelchair, he was not bedridden. He greeted us, we cracked jokes and he was mentally alert. We discussed the security situation in the country and he asked us questions about what we are doing.

“Our prayer is that God will consummate his healing. We asked him not to hurry because there is no vacuum. The Acting President is holding forth for him and he is doing very well. By the grace of God, I believe that very soon, he will be with us.”

The governor also expressed surprise that a former Commissioner of Police, Abubakar Tsav, has continued to make unfounded allegations against him.

He said Tsav had earlier apologised to him on the matter, but he told the former commissioner that he was not comfortable with a secret apology. He said the Tor Tiv, who was present during the discussion, asked Tsav to tender a public apology within two weeks so that he (Ortom) would withdraw the suit he instituted against Tsav.

He said, “The Tor Tiv gave him two weeks to tender a public apology, but he turned back to launch another attack.

“I want the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission or any organisation that he has written petitions against me to investigate whether the allegations are true or not. That is why I decided to go to court since I am a law-abiding governor.”

However, Nigerians, including the pan-Yoruba organisation, Afenifere, berated the governor for his comment on Buhari’s health.

Afenifere and the Coalition of Northern Youths lampooned Ortom over his statement that Buhari’s ill-health had made the nation sick.

Afenifere’s spokesman, Yinka Odumakin, described the comment as “the height of sycophancy by Ortom.”

He said if the governor’s comment was true, it meant the President surrounded himself with incompetent officials who could not steer the country along the right path without him.

“The President is the number one citizen, but if he is sick, that did not mean the nation is sick; he is not Nigeria. If he is sick and the country is sick, it means he surrounded himself with incompetents who cannot steer the ship of the nation without him. I think the comment by Ortom is the height of sycophancy,” Odumakin said.

The President of the Coalition of Northern Youths, Yerima Shettima, said Ortom’s statement was sad and unfortunate, noting that the nation was greater than an individual.

He said it was wrong for anyone to say Nigeria was sick because of Buhari’s illness, noting that the nation must forge ahead with or without the President.

Shettima argued that the country must build strong institutions, stressing that an individual alone could not make a country.

He said, “As much as we love him (Buhari), and we are worried about his health, we cannot say because he is sick, the entire country should fall apart. We pray for his quick recovery, but Nigeria must forge ahead.

“Nigeria must forge ahead, but we pray for him to come back in good health and discharge his duties and fulfil his obligation to the electorate. But for anybody to say without Buhari, there is no Nigeria or because he is sick, the country is sick; it is not right.

“I am sure Buhari will not want Nigeria to go down, or for the country to be sick because he is sick. We need to be mindful of our words; the country is greater than any individual.”

Also, a civil-society organisation, Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project, said opinions of governors that visited President Muhammadu Buhari could not determine his stay in London since they were not medical doctors.

SERAP Director, Adetokunbo Mumumi, said only the medical team with the President would determine his leaving.

He said, “When the President left for his first medical trip, he made it known that he would still go back for a checkup. The health of the president is very important, and he has a duty to take care of himself. The governors do not have to tell the President before he does that. They are not medical doctors.

“It is what the medical team in London tells him that will be done. Nigeria has existed before the President was born, and the country will continue to be whether he is well or not.”

A Second Republic lawmaker and northern elder statesman, Dr Junaid Mohammed, said the statement credited to Ortom was unfortunate, noting that the governor was trying to be “mischievous.”

Junaid said, “If that statement came out from Governor Ortom, then it is rather unfortunate. It further confirms the fears of Nigerians that there is no clear-cut definition on the president’s state of health. The statement is rather mischievous. It does not allay the worries of Nigerians.”  (Punchng.com)

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PHOTO NEWS: Buhari Receives Seven Governors Who Paid Him Visit In London

By Ike A. Offor,

The ailing President Muhammadu Buhari today received seven states governors who for paid him a courtesy visit in London, where he has been for the last 72 days since he left for medical attention by his British doctors.

Muhammadu Buhari looked hale and hearty and very cheerful in the photos and looked like he had recovered from the ailment.

The five governors from APC and two other governors from PDP were a planned visit to showcase that the president is alive and well unlike what has been making rounds about his bad health and probable death.

As the pictures released today shows, the president was not only healthy looking but in a cheerful mood when he received the delegation of governors from Nigeria.

 

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President Buhari is seen here chatting with the governors

 

 

 

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Buhari poses for a group photo with the governors who paid him a courtesy visit

 

 

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Buhari is seen here laughing to some jokes with the governors

 

 

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President Buhari greeted by Governor Ajumobi

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Why Buhari Is Receiving Governors, Others Now – Presidency |The Republican News

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Olalekan Adetayo, Abuja

The Presidency, on Tuesday, said President Muhammadu Buhari had initially barred politicians and other individuals from visiting him in London, the United Kingdom, where he has been receiving medical attention since May 7.

It attributed the President’s change of mind to what it called “the change in circumstances.”

It said this was the proper time for him to receive delegations rather than when he was indisposed.

RelatedPhotos of APC Governors, Leaders With Buhari Old, Fake, Femi-Kayode Alleges

The Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Mr Femi Adesina; and the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Mr Garba Shehu, disclosed this to State House correspondents at a press conference at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

They addressed journalists alongside the Senior Special Assistant to the Acting President on Media and Publicity, Mr Laolu Akande.

They had confirmed The PUNCH’s Tuesday lead story that some state governors, drawn from both the ruling All Progressives Congress and the opposition Peoples Democratic Party, would visit Buhari in London.

When asked specifically to give the mission of the state governors, who will be meeting with Buhari on Wednesday (today), Shehu said, “The visit is a goodwill visit and there is nothing more than that.

“I believe Nigerians in various positions have yearned to go and meet the President and at some point, this obviously has not been permitted.

“But given the change in circumstances, you can see that it is coming from London itself and the President is welcoming it.

“It is a goodwill visit. As a cultural people, we visit people leaving the hospital and I am sure the President himself will be delighted to see people coming from the six geopolitical zones to convey the goodwill of Nigerians.”

RelatedBuhari, APC delegation Parley In London, Says Presidency |The Republican News

Shehu said the visiting team would be led by the Chairman of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum and the Zamfara State Governor, Abdulazeez Yari.

He listed other members of the delegation to include Dave Umahi (Ebonyi); Umar Ganduje (Kano);  Kashim Shettima (Borno); Samuel Ortom (Benue); Udom Emmanuel (Akwa Ibom) and Abiola Ajimobi (Oyo).

The presidential spokesman said the delegation would leave Nigeria on Tuesday night, arrive in London early on Wednesday (today) and meet the President by 3 pm.

When asked why the Ekiti State Governor, Ayodele Fayose, a strong critic of Buhari, was not included in the delegation, Adesina said the question should be directed to the NGF that did the selection.

When also asked why the President preferred such visits to broadcasting a message to Nigerians, Adesina said that was Buhari’s choice.

“It is a question of what he (the President) prefers and this is what he prefers for now. He would rather receive that delegation and that is what is happening. If the President opts for address, he will do it,” he said.

When asked why members of the President’s Media team were not part of the delegation, Shehu said the President’s Personal Photographer, Bayo Omoboriowo, would be part of the delegation.

“They say a picture conveys more than a thousand words. Bayo will be there and I think it will be more beneficial to Nigerians than if the Special Adviser was on that trip without a cameraman,” he stated.

When again asked why this delegation will be going when those who met with the President on Sunday were state governors, Shehu said, “You will notice that those that went at the weekend are members of the All Progressives Congress.

“So, those who are going now are on a broader platform, which is the Nigeria Governors’ Forum. As to who is sponsoring, I don’t have any information on that,” he said.

Related: Buhari Has Failed, No Hope, APC Lied Against Jonathan, PDP, Says Sen. Kanti Bello

Adesina also justified the visits at a time when the President is said to be recuperating.

He said, “It is the right time for the visit like Mallam Garba said earlier. When somebody has recovered or something or the other happened, it is in our culture for us to visit such a person.

“So, this is the right time because the news is that he is recovering and recovering well.”

When again asked the specific time Buhari would return and if there would be cabinet reshuffle on his return, Adesina said, “That (the President’s date) already is in public domain. He will come back when the doctors certify.

“It is in the letter he wrote to the AU chairman which was made public this afternoon. He said he was just waiting for his doctors to tell him all is well and then he will return home.

“In terms of whether there will be a shake-up of government or not, the President is the head of the government and is his prerogative; so nobody can speak for him on that.”

I’m making good progress, says Buhari

Meanwhile, Buhari has said he is making good progress in London, where he is currently receiving medical attention.

According to a statement on Tuesday by Adesina, the President made the disclosure in a “thank you” letter he wrote to the President of Guinea, Alpha Conde, for the nationwide prayers held last week by Guineans for his recovery and good health.

Adesina said the President had earlier made a telephone call to Conde, who is the current Chairman of the Assembly of Heads of State and Government of the African Union.

Buhari’s letter to Conde dated July 24, 2017, read, “I thank you for your kind and thoughtful action in organising nationwide prayers for my good health.

“Your Excellency will be pleased to hear that I am making good progress, and as soon as doctors advise, I shall return to my duties and continue serving the Nigerian people, who elected me and are daily praying for my recovery.”

In an earlier letter, Buhari was said to have also accepted his nomination as leader of the ‘2018 AU Theme on the Fight Against Corruption’, which came from African leaders at the 29th Session of the Assembly of Heads of State and Government of the AU in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, on July 4, 2017.    (Punchng.com)

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If My Doctors Permit, I Shall Return Soon, Says Buhari |The Republican News

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Buhari on vacation in London

From Juliana Taiwo-Obalonye, Abuja

President Muhammadu Buhari has assured the President of Guinea, Alpha Conde, that he was making progress with his health.

Buhari in a letter to thank  the Chairman of  the Assemblies of Heads of State and Government of the African Union, for the nationwide prayers held last week by Guineans for his recovery and good health, said he would  return to his duties to continue serving the Nigerian people who elected him, as soon as received the green light from his doctors.

Special Adviser on Media and Publicity to the President, Femi Adesina in a statement said the assurance was contained in a letter to the Guinean President dated July 24, 2017.

According to the statement, “President Buhari, who had earlier made a phone call to Conde, who is the current Chairman of  the Assemblies of Heads of State and Government of the African Union, stated:

“I thank you for your kind and thoughtful action in organising nationwide prayers for my good health. It is a gesture that I will forever cherish and treasure.

“Your Excellency will be pleased to hear that I am making good progress, and as soon as doctors advice, I shall return to my duties and continue serving the Nigerian people who elected me and are daily praying for my recovery.”

The statement said Buhari had in an earlier letter, accepted his nomination as leader of the “2018 AU theme on the fight against corruption”, which came from African leaders at the 29th Session of the Assembly of Heads of State and Government of the AU in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, on July 4, 2017.

“While thanking you for the kind words and for the nomination,” the President wrote to Conde, “I wish to express my readiness to accept this new important role and to reiterate my commitment to contribute towards our collective efforts to strengthen good governance and development on the continent. I, therefore, look forward to working closely with you in the realisation of this objective.”

   The president’s letter to Conde corroborated the view expressed by National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun, who had said that only his doctors in the United Kingdom could decide when he would be fit to return to the country and return to work.

Addressing journalists after a closed door meeting of the National Working Committee of the party, including governors elected on the party’s platform, in Abuja last Thursday, Odigie-Oyegun explained that Buhari was fast recovering from his ailment.

  He dismissed claims by Governor Ayo Fayose of Ekiti State that Buhari was on life support.

“If I respond, I will be dignifying him. At the appropriate time, people will answer him; at the appropriate level. He (Fayose) is in a different world altogether. We are glad to inform you that President Muhammadu Buhari is recovering in a very robust manner,” Oyegun said.  (The Sun)

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