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Buhari The federal republic of pictures and phone calls

The Buhari presidency should spare us further pictures of the President in London. We've had enough.

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Buhari meets with Archbishop of Canterbury in London play

Buhari meets with Archbishop of Canterbury in London

(LIB)

These days, I keep my cellphone even closer just in case President Muhammadu Buhari is trying to reach me from his London apartment.

Yeah, it's become that pathetic.

"The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby,  this afternoon visited President Muhammadu Buhari in Abuja House, London", the Nigerian Presidency gleefully announced on Thursday, March 9, 2017; complete with pictures of a grinning President and an excited Archbishop.

President Buhari has been away from his work desk since January 19, 2017.

The world was told that the President had embarked on a routine medical vacation.

What was a routine medical vacation soon morphed into "the President is awaiting test results from his Doctors".

 

A day before his initial 10-day vacation was due to elapse, Buhari wrote the national assembly, pleading for an extension.

ALSO READ: Nigerians worry as Buhari won't just return home

“President Muhammadu Buhari has written to the National Assembly, today, February 5, 2017, informing it of his desire to extend his leave in order to complete and receive the results of a series of tests recommended by his Doctors", announced Special Adviser to the President on media and Publicity, Mr. Femi Adesina.

Since the extension of the President's vacation indefinitely, Aso Rock has somewhat deemed it necessary to bombard us with details of who the President has been on the phone with, who he's having lunch with or who he's taking selfies with.

The world has been shown pictures of Buhari with APC chieftains Bisi Akande and Bola Tinubu; we've been shown unsolicited pictures of Buhari dining with Governor Ibikunle Amosun of Ogun State, Nigerians have had to put up with images of Buhari standing upright with his wife Aisha.

Speaker of the House, Yakubu Dogara and Senate President, Bukola Saraki during a courtesy call to President Muhammadu Buhari in London on February 15, 2017. play Dogara, Buhari, Saraki in London (Twitter)

 

Pictures of the President meeting with presiding officers of the national assembly, have been shoved in our faces.

On the list of those who have heard the President over the phone are President of the United States Donald Trump, Kano State Governor Abdullahi Ganduje, Kogi Governor Yahaya Bello, King of Morocco, Senate President Bukola Saraki, Speaker Yakubu Dogara, former President Olusegun Obasanjo and acting President Yemi Osinbajo.

And on and on it goes.

This is becoming a circus.

A boring circus at that.

If Buhari doesn't deem it necessary to speak to the people who elected him via a live televised clip or via any of the modern technological tools now at the disposal of mankind, Aso Rock should spare us details of which 'privileged' personalities with 'two heads' that Buhari has chosen to communicate with.

Seriously, we are not doing again.

President Muhammadu Buhari meets with Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu and Chief Bisi Akande at the Abuja House in London on February 9, 2017. play Buhari, Akande and Tinubu (Twitter/NGRPresident)

 

In the early days of the President's medical vacation, these pictures and phone conversation details were okay, if only to dispel wicked insinuations that the President had passed on.

Right now, there have become a national distraction--a huge distraction.

The President is "hale and hearty". Can we move on now?

Nigeria is embroiled in an economic crisis, our foreign reserves have tanked, inflation has spiralled out of control, there is no electricity to power homes and offices, investors are playing a waiting game with their portfolios and the life expectancy of the average Nigerian is shrivelling by the day.

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has been doing a decent enough job (by most accounts) in Buhari's absence to steady the ship of state and restore some confidence to the market.

In my book, that's more important than who the President is having pictures with or who he's talking to at the moment.

What should concern Nigerians at this point is whether institutions of state have been running as they should.

It's been some 50 odd days since the President left Nigeria, asking rhetorically: "what's wrong with embarking on a vacation?...Didn't I go last year the same time?"

We have been told that he's "hale and hearty".

As though a "hale and hearty" President needs time to rest and needs 50 days to "await results of medical tests".

President Muhammadu Buhari meets with Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu and Chief Bisi Akande at the Abuja House in London on February 9, 2017. play Buhari meets Tinubu and Akande in London (Twitter/NGRPresident)

 

The Nigerian President is obviously very ill.

What he needs is plenty of rest--away from the (social ) media spotlight.

Even when he does return home, Buhari needs another period of rest away from the rigours and demands of his office.

Nigerians accept that it's okay to fall ill because every human who is not a superhuman, does fall ill.

Nigerians have continued to pray for their "hale and hearty" President as he convalesces in a London apartment.

Illness is nothing to be ashamed of.

Illness isn't deserving of a media spin or a PR machinery.

We understand that power is the end game for a lot of folks around the President hence the endless photo-ops, but Aso Rock will be doing the people a lot of good by letting Nigerians and governance institutions continue to do their best to steer this nation out of its current rut.

Nigerians just want their country back.

One more picture or details of phone conversations with Buhari and I'll flip.

Meanwhile, I need to check who's buzzing my cellphone at the moment....it may just be the President of the federal republic of phone calls and pictures.

I have just confirmed that he's returning home tomorrow.

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