Why I’m still in London, Buhari tells aides

From Juliana , Taiwo-Obalonye, Abuja

President Muhammadu Buhari yesterday at Abuja House, London, received another delegation led by Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, where he assured that he has improved tremendously in his health condition, adding that though he wishes to return home, he has learnt to obey his doctor’s orders.

Other members of the delegation were Mr. Femi Adesina, Special Adviser on Media and Publicity; Mallam Garba Shehu, Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity; Lauretta Onochie, Personal Assistant on Digital/Online Media; and Abike Dabiri-Erewa, the Senior Special Assistant on Diaspora Matters.

The visit is coming on the heels of protests by a group known as “OurMumuDonDo”, led by the convener, Deji Adeyanju, and Charles Oputa, popularly known as Charly Boy, asking the President to either resume work or resign and also make public the nature of his illness. But another group under the aegis of Centre for Civil Society and Justice, CCSJ, led by Comrade Prince Goodluck Obi Nelson, organised a counter protest, saying the President should be left alone to recover fully from his ailment and then come back to continue his fight against corruption.

Buhari had earlier received delegations from the All Progressive Congress (APC) and the Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF).

In a statement made available to newsmen in Abuja, Adesina quoted the President as saying that there was tremendous improvement in his health, and that he wishes to return home, “but I’ve learnt to obey my doctor’s orders, rather than be the one issuing the orders. Here, the doctor is absolutely in charge.”

Adesina said when the team expressed delight at the improved health of the President, he retorted: “I feel I could go home, but the doctors are in charge. I’ve now learnt to obey orders, rather than be obeyed.”

On how he felt hearing different conjectures about his health, Adesina said an amused President Buhari said he followed events at home closely, lauding Nigerian television stations and the media generally for keeping him informed.

When told that prayers were going on fervently for him not only in Nigeria but all over Africa and around the world, Adesina quoted the President as saying: “What we did in The Gambia early this year fetched us a lot of goodwill on the African continent. It gave us a lot of latitude. I thank all those who are praying. May God reward them.” The presidential spokesman said President Buhari sent appreciation to all Nigerians, expressing hope that he would be with them soon.

Buhari has been away for 95 days. He left the country on May 7, this year, for medical consultations with his doctors in London.

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