STOP THIS SCARE MONGERING, NATIONAL LEAGUE OF VETERAN JOURNALISTS SPEAK ON PRESIDENT BUHARI’S HEALTH
We are compelled to intervene to check the despair being desperately spread by agents of destabilization using the so-called ill health of President Muhammadu Buhari as their ploy.
This scare mongering is being fanned by those who want the old order to subsist so that they could feast on the national till unchallenged.
The President did not hide his case when he took ill and sought medical assistance in Britain.
It is no hidden fact that the 16 years of profligacy by the three civilian governments he succeeded destroyed all the structures that existed before 1999, hospitals, farms, schools, roads, sports, power and industry included.
President Buhari has been convalescing. What is this deliberately crafted fear being spread by people who should be in the vanguard to tame unfounded rumours that lead to instability? The President has made public appearances. The Nigerian constitution does not provide for a President to resign if he is sick because only God can guarantee good health. Buhari is not a shopkeeper or trader.
There is no medical evidence that Buhari has lost his faculties and as such is unable to discharge the oath he swore to uphold.
There is no provision in our constitution for the President to obtain sick leave. Why then the present hu ha?
Those who love Nigeria and wish our country to recover from the wreckage left behind by the preceding civilian governments should mobilise to stop this propaganda of fear and despair being spun by treasury looters, with their long purses are unsettling the national recovery war of Buhari.
We appeal to all self-respecting public figures to weigh the words they utter in the interest of Nigeria. The President, as Chief Executive, could hold his cabinet meetings even in his living room.
Many members of our league have more than half-a-century experience of reporting Nigeria and the world. Past Nigerian heads of government from Sir Abubakar Tafawa-Balewa to President Goodluck Jonathan, had different methods of running their cabinet.
There is no provision in the constitution specifically stating that cabinet meetings be held at a particular place on a specific time on a day of the week. We appreciate the present administration’s policy which has reduced expenditure on importation of foods, specifically rice. We also back Buhari’s herculean fight against corruption and the efforts at recovering our patrimony stolen by heartless politicians and public officers.
The league is alarmed that most state and local governments cannot pay their workers’ salaries, yet their governors and legislators wallow in affluence and culpable ostentation expecting the federal government to pick the bill. And some media houses decorate these incompetent governors with awards. In a healthy federation, states and local authorities should bear the burden of the people and not the centre.
All these are unwarrantedly blamed on Buhari who has been bending over to allay the consequences of the actions of these reckless state governors.
We call on people in states where those errant governors preside to hold them responsible for not delivering on so-called “democracy dividends” as it were in the First Republic and other recognised nations of the world.
The league wants the building of modular refineries to be sped up to save our foreign exchange and avail local industries of the multiple derivatives from crude oil.
We are disappointed at the kid gloves being applied in fighting electric power supply in Nigeria and request a complete restructuring of the unwieldy contrivance of the past government to bring it under state control.
Ben Lawrence Ajibade Fashina-Thomas
Secretary General Past President