PRESIDENT Muhammadu Buhari of Nigeria is “recuperating fast” from an undisclosed illness, according to his wife Aisha Buhari.
Speaking after returning home from a trip to visit the ailing president in London, Mrs Buhari said her husband thanked Nigerians for their “constant prayers and said he will soon be with them as he is recuperating fast”.
Buhari (74) has been undergoing treatment at a London hospital for nearly a month. However, analysts say his wife’s comments will do little to reassure Nigerians.
In January this year Buhari took seven weeks of medical leave and flew to the UK for treatment.
When he returned home in March, his office hinted that he had undergone a blood transfusion, but did not disclose his illness. He flew back to London on May 7 and has been undergoing treatment ever since.
A Nigerian political commentator told Team Buntu Africa that Nigerians deserve to be given more detail about the nature of Buhari’s illness.
“Nigeria is due to have governorship elections on November 18 and people are anxious to know if president Buhari will be able to resume his duties when he returns,” the political commentator said. “It isn’t an ideal situation for Buhari to be directing Nigeria’s affairs from a clinic or hospice in London.”
Meanwhile, Nigeria’s Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo has been widely commended for his handling of the country’s economic crisis, following a sharp fall in the price of oil, its major export.
“Constitutionally, Osinbajo should be able to step into president Buhari’s shoes if he is deemed unfit to continue in his duties,” the commentator said. “However, there is a powerful clique of northern Nigerian oligarchs who will not tolerate such a move.”