I chose to discuss this topic not only because it interest me as a socially conscious Nigerian, but because I feel a good number of Nigerians are exploiting President Buhari's prolonged vacation in the United Kingdom to pass unpatriotic and uninteresting comment on the administration of President Buhari and everyone working on the team.
It all started with the rumor that the president is dead, but the President's media team was swift to dispel that rumor. Like they weren't satisfied with that, they launched another attack, this time they alleged that the private doctors of the President has certified him unfit to rule. But then those that were in communication with the President - the leaders of the National Assembly and the Acting President Prof. Yemi Osinbajo - dispelled the rumor and assured Nigerians the President is in sound health.
Yes I admit, the media team of the President has been feeding us with contradicting reports on the President's state of health, but does that justify why some of us chose to assume he's dead or critically ill? No, it doesn't. Guess those people have allowed their hatred overcome their desire for a better Nigeria. Have you guys forgotten President Buhari is still our President? If we want the best for Nigeria, we should desire that our leaders have good health so we can all pursue that dream together as a united nation. That's exactly how it should be!
One other thing, some sections have recently been advocating that President Buhari should resign so as to allow the Vice President (currently the Acting President) Prof. Yemi Osinbajo become President. I personally find their opinion unpatriotic and utterly disgusting.
One of those "advocates" is Jeff Okoroafor - the President of Opinion Nigeria, an international human rights organization, who has called on President Muhammadu Buhari to tender his resignation to pave way for the confirmation of Acting President Yemi Osinbajo (SAN) as President. Okoroafor and his organization are premising its demand on health reasons and Buhari's trip to the United Kingdom.
In a petition to Buhari entitled: "A call for President Muhammadu Buhari's resignation without further ado", Okoroafor said the response by Presidential spokesman, Femi Adesina that Buhari was "on a short leave which is part of his annual vacation", was the beginning of an unending tale.
I hope you can recall that on the 7th day of February 2017, the Senate confirmed receipt of Buhari's letter, informing the National Assembly about the resolve to extend his annual vacation in the United Kingdom. This development isn't fascinating to Mr. Okoroafor and Opinion Nigeria because they claimed President Buhari wasn't "categorical on the new date of his return".
Mr. Okoroafor in his submission claimed this scenario had left the Vice President in an acting capacity "for too long", especially at a time when the country was in dire need of affirmative actions to put things in the right perspective for the year.
Excerpt from Jeff Okoroafor's Petition
Here is an excerpt of Mr. Okoroafor's petition:
"Although there seems to be a general assumption that the Vice President Yemi Osinbajo is acting in the place of the president as such no vacuum is created in the system. But, we are quite aware that there are so many pending issues on the desk of Mr. President that awaits his return."
"We cannot be operating in secrecy at the presidential level expecting the information hungry Nigerians to keep mute. We have the right to know what is happening and we are committed to a functional and operational Nigeria which is not halted for any political gains or satisfaction."
"Based on this, we call for the immediate resignation of President Muhammadu Buhari quoting his health as the reason to fully function as the president of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, followed swiftly with the immediate confirmation of Vice President Yemi Osinbajo as a substantive President of the country."
"We hope that this petition will reach deserving authorities in good faith, understanding that the urgency of this request is born out of the desire to salvage the country from total collapse. We pray and urge that this letter will be treated without prejudice or sentiment from whatever sphere of reasoning."
"As the days on vacation recede, Nigerians yearn insistently to know the circumstances surrounding the president's seemingly emergency exit from the country. It is ponderous to put on record that this so-called all important vacation was coming at a point when the country's economy was demanding the innovation or yet still budgetary intervention to ameliorate the sufferings of many Nigerians."
"The social media in Nigeria within these seven-over-ten day vacation was awashed with stories competing for public attention about the reason behind the trip. The stories expanded with time with the climax asserting the death of President Buhari over failure to respond to treatments from the medical team in some named hospital in the UK."
"The presidency so far has come up with conflicting versions of comments to diffuse the tension but their words further rambled the suspicion of most Nigerians who requested that the president relay a video to Nigerians assuring them that he was hale and hearty but, he never succumbed."
Having read through this excerpt, I can make two assumptions; its either Mr Okoroafor has a private beef with the President, or he's fed up by the economic situation of Nigeria. If it was the former, that can't be my business, but if it's the later, I can speak on that.
Policies implemented by the Buhari-led administration hasn't been favourable to Nigerians; we've seen inflation, several months of unpaid salaries etc. but do we really think the President's death or resignation will bring an end to all these occurrence? NO, it just can't! Things might even go worse.
Oh! That reminds me. Some section of the citizenry think Acting President Osinbajo has done excellently well and by so doing, he's more deserving of the Presidency than President Buhari. When I hear them make such comments, I laugh hard as much as I can. Why? Because people that believe in that thought probably don't understand that all the decisions President Buhari has made in the past might probably be his decision and that of his Vice President.
And besides, the Vice President is the chairman of the National Economic Council; which is constitutionally empowered to "advise the president on issues concerning the economic affairs of the country and in particular on measures necessary for the coordination of the economic planning efforts or economic programmes of the various Governments of the Federation." So if the economy isn't thriving well, you just don't blame the President alone, the Vice President, the state governors and the CBN Governor should also be thrashed as well.
Acting President Osinbajo is doing just nice, but that doesn't mean President Buhari is insensitive and incapable. It's a good thing Prof. Osinbajo is doing excellently well, but in my opinion, that isn't enough excuse to ask President Buhari to resign as President. Our constitution has spelled out circumstances that can lead to the resignation removal of the President, and since President Buhari hasn't gone against the constitution, he deserves to stay in office till the end of his tenure. Till then, long live my President!
But let's ask ourselves this question, would you support a move to force President Buhari to resign so Prof. Osinbajo can become President? Share your thoughts in the comment section.
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Posted 8:02am, Mon 23rd January, 2017 by Iyanu Victor