PRESIDENT Muhammadu Buhari will continue to go abroad for medical treatment for the rest of his tenure despite the widespread opposition to the development by many Nigerians according to presidency officials.
On March 30, President Buhari arrived in London for a two week holiday, during which time he will meet with his British doctors for a medical check-up. Downplaying the seriousness of the visit, presidency officials presidency officials said that the president will only be undergoing routine medical check-up.
However, the visit has not gone done well with members of the Nigerian diaspora in the UK who have been holding protests outside Abuja House, located at 2 Campden Hill in Kensington, London. They held at least three demonstrations on April 2, 3 and 4 outside Abuja House, saying the president should be receiving his medical treatment in Nigeria.
In response, the federal government organised a series of counter-demonstrations, getting its supporters in the UK to hold a prayer session outside Abuja House. However, the government’s counter-demonstration was poorly attended amid reports that only those who received the £75 payment promised bothered to turn up.
Pointing out that President Buhari will not be deterred by the protests, presidential aide Lauretta Onochie, said his right to see his personal doctors cannot be taken away. She added that no amount of wailing can stop President Buhari from embarking on medical trips which he has been doing for years.
Ms Onochie tweeted, “Next year, President Buhari will go for a routine check-up. We have been here since 2016 and it’s been the same wailing, so the response will also be the same.
“At least, once a year, people across the world see their personal doctors especially one they have seen for about 40 years. President Buhari won’t dump his doctor of about 40 years so that wailers can be happy as that’s blackmail and thankfully, he doesn’t pay blackmailers.”
A fresh protest organised by Revolution Now convener Omoyele Sowore, has been scheduled for today in London to force President Buhari to return to Nigeria for his medical check-up. To make matters worse, Nigeria’s National Association of resident Doctors are currently on strike over salary arrears and the no-payment of their Covid-19 hazard allowances.
Ms Onochie added: “In 2016, I ran from one media house to the other, educating us on the psychology of the bond between a patient and his/her long-standing doctor. He went for a check-up in 2017, 2018, 2019 and in 2020, just before the pandemic, yet we had the same wailing and same explanations.
“The fact remains that if President Buhari chooses, he will go for checkups in 2022 and 2023. It’s his choice to go or not to and I don’t know any man who will accept a different barber to cut his hair if the one he is used to, is available.
“Wailing can’t take away his rights to see his personal doctors, so wailers must get ready for two more years of wailing and fooling around. God bless Nigeria.”