Femi Falana, a Senior Avocate of Nigeria (SAN) has urged President Muhammadu Buhari to take an urgent medical leave from governance.
Buhari returned from medical vacation, in the United Kingdom, in March. And, since his return, the president has only made a few public appearances, fueling speculations about his health when he did not attend the Jumat service last Friday. But the Presidency has said that there is no need for apprehension over president Buhari’s health. In a statement issued on Monday, Falana, Ibrahim and Adeniran urged Buhari to heed the advice of his personal physician and take some time to attend his health.
Here is part of the statement:
“When president Muhammadu Buhari was recently in the United Kingdom on a medical vacation, which lasted 49 days, many public officers said that he was ‘hale and hearty.’ But, upon his return to the country, president Buhari disclosed that he had never been that sick in his entire life. Even though the president did not disclose the nature of his ailment, he revealed that he went through blood transfusion. While thanking the Nigerian people for their prayers, the president announced that he might soon travel back for further medical treatment. A few weeks ago, governor of Kaduna state, Nasir El-Rufai urged Nigerians to give president Buhari time to recover from his sickness. The plea was made after the governor had visited and, presumably, assessed the state of the president, at the Presidential Villa, in Abuja. However, due to the apparent deterioration in the president’s health condition, he has neither been seen in public in the last one week nor attended the last two meetings of the Federal Executive Council (FEC). His absence at the last Jumat service in the villa has fuelled further speculations and rumours on president Buhari’s medical condition.”
The statement further noted that, “instead of embarking on regular briefing on the actual state of the health of president Buhari, officials of the federal government have continued to assure the Nigerian people. In defending the absence of the president at the last FEC meeting and other state functions, the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu stated that ‘the president’s doctors have advised on his taking things slowly, as he fully recovers from the long period of treatment in the United Kingdom some weeks ago. As we join the Nigerian people of goodwill to pray for a speedy recovery of president Buhari, we are compelled to advise him to heed the advice of his personal physicians by taking a rest to attend to his health without any further delay."
Last week, Nobel Laureate, Prof. Wole Soyinka, asked the president to declare his health status to Nigerians on the premise that the president is public property.