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Managing information about President Buhari’s health

President Muhammadu Buhari’s appearance at the Friday, May 5, 2017,   Jumat Service and his return to the United Kingdom for follow-up medical treatment on Sunday, May 7, 2017,   ended weeks of speculations about his health condition. The concern followed the President’s three consecutive absences at the weekly Federal Executive Council (FEC) meetings.

Conflicting reasons were given on the three occasions: that it was not compulsory for the President to attend the weekly FEC meetings; that he would be working from home and that he needed rest on doctors’ advice.     His health concern engaged national attention since he returned to Nigeria on Friday, March 10, 2017, after a 50-day medical vacation in the UK. During the period, the wild rumours about his actual state of health were due to uncoordinated information management by his aides.

Events that unfolded around the portals of power before the President travelled suggested the nation was treading a beaten path reminiscent of the late President Umaru Yar’ Adua episode.   That prompted several calls on President Buhari to publicly declare his health status. It was the same manner that information about him was mismanaged by his  minders when he went on the first medical vacation.

Concerned Nigerians appreciate the fact that health issue is a private affair and that the President, like all mortals, is not immune from falling ill. However, President Buhari is not a private citizen, at least for now. So, Nigerians who gave him the mandate to manage their affairs and provide the leadership he promised during the campaigns are interested in everything about him, except his core domestic affair.   It is a grave disservice to the public to conceal information about his health. Experience shows that those who do this are usually up to no good. They use it as an opportunity to hijack power and rule the country by proxy, though they were never given any mandate by voter-Nigerians.

Now that the President had gone for medical follow-up, Nigerians expect to be kept well informed of his progress. Citizens should not be fed with outright lies and deception in the name of managing information. This was what happened in his earlier trip this year. Officials claimed he was “hale and hearty”, only for the President to return and inform Nigerians he had never been so sick  in his life.

Since Professor Osinbajo has the full constitutional backing to lead the country in the President’s absence, we should allow Buhari the peaceful atmosphere to undergo treatment. Proper information about his progress will prevent the type of undue negative speculations we witnessed before.

Nigerians should desist from making political profit out of the health misfortunes of their leaders.

 

The post Managing information about President Buhari’s health appeared first on Vanguard News.

This post was syndicated from Vanguard News. Click here to read the full text on the original website.

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