CNN is laughing at Nigeria for Buhari's disappearance. We deserve the insult and ridicule.
It’s been 85 days since Buhari left Nigeria for an open-ended medical vacation in London.
The Nigerian leader left Nigeria on May 7, 2017.
It took 77 days for the presidency to make pictures of a convalescing Buhari available to the local press.
Days later, the Nigerian president met with another group of Governors. Images from that meeting immediately swarmed the social media space.
The president is looking better than when he left Nigeria’s shores and for that, we are thankful to God.
However, like we’ve said here over and over again, there’s no other country in the world where the president just disappears without a word for over two months. The rest of the world must be shocked to its marrow.
The point has been made time and again that the fact that the nation’s number one citizen is tending to his health in a London apartment, is an indictment on himself and the nation’s ailing health sector he promised to fix.
It’s also arrogant of Buhari that he hasn’t deemed it necessary to speak directly to the millions of people back home who got him elected president in 2015.
The president deemed it necessary to pen a letter from his London apartment to the Guinean president, Alpha Conde, and none to Nigerians.
In the past, Buhari has also made policy pronouncements to the international press during foreign travels, at the expense of the local press who are only considered good enough for press statements.
It is a disdain for the local press that is ingrained within the Buhari presidency.
The irony of a member of the international press taking subtle digs at Buhari and the rest of the nation he leads, therefore wasn't lost on anyone.
“In the more than six months since he took office, President Trump could not have been more visible, dominating headlines just about every day”, said CNN’s Fareed Zakaria on his program, the Global Public Square (GPS), last weekend.
Continuing in tongue-in-cheek fashion, Zakaria said; “One country has had the opposite problem in recent months and it brings you to my question: Which country’s head of state has not set foot in his homeland in over two months?”
Zakaria’s options were:
A)Saudi Arabia (B) Cuba (C) Nigeria (D)Syria.
Everyone got the answer right. Every Nigerian got the answer right.
The answer was staring us in the face. CNN and Zakaria were having a laugh at our expense and let’s be honest, we asked for it.
I was having lunch while watching Zakaria pose the question during a segment of his program. It was all I needed to shove the bowl of rice out of sight and bid my appetite some farewell for the rest of the day.
See our life outside.
It wasn’t lost on me that CNN and the rest of the world were mocking Nigeria and Nigerians.
It was embarrassing. This was one odium and ridicule well deserved from Zakaria and his team.
We are still awaiting our president and he has promised that once his Doctors hand him the all clear, he’ll be back home. As always, we wish him a speedy recovery and will welcome him home with open arms whenever he chooses to return.
But let’s not dismiss the ridicule from CNN and the international community on account of Buhari’s medical sojourn.
Years from now, when school kids are asked the question: “Which country’s head of state did not set foot in his homeland in over….” during exams, there’ll only be one answer--Nigeria.
Thank you Baba Buhari. We are back on the world map thanks to you and we are really grateful for the honour.