Abuja – President Muhammadu Buhari is back in the country after a 10-day private visit to the United Kingdom.
This is coming as Femi Adesina, Special Adviser on Media and Publicity to the President, mocked “naysayers”, who he allegedly said misinformed Nigerians that the president was going for hospitalisation, and would not return after 10 days as stated.
Buhari arrived the presidential wing of the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja, a few minutes after 6p.m from where he proceeded to his Aso Rock residence.
Before he embarked on the UK trip, he first made an official visit to Maiduguri, the Borno State capital, where he commissioned a number of projects executed by the state government.
A statement signed by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, had indicated that he would return on May 5.
The statement had read: “Further to the official visit by President Muhammadu Buhari to Lagos on Wednesday where he commissioned a number of projects executed by the state government, the president is scheduled to depart for Maiduguri, the Borno State capital, for another official visit Thursday.
“He is expected to commission developmental projects, especially in the sectors of education, healthcare, and roads.
“At the end of the visit, President Buhari will be proceeding to the United Kingdom on a private visit. He is expected to return to Nigeria on May 5, 2019.”
But no sooner had he left than criticisms started trailing the private visit.
First was the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) which queried the president’s failure to officially transmit power to Vice President Yemi Osinbajo.
However, immediately the president returned to Abuja on Sunday, his media adviser, Adesina, immediately released a statement mocking naysayers.
According to Adesina, “Some reckless online media, irresponsible political opposition, and other bilious groups and individuals had gone on overdrive since the president left the country on April 25, insinuating that he was going for hospitalisation, and would not return after 10 days as stated.
“In their vain imaginations, they even stated that fictive doctors have advised President Buhari to stay longer for more intensive care.
“Now that the president has returned, can these apostles of evil imaginings swallow their words? Can they retract their tendentious stories as well as press statements, and apologise to millions of Nigerians both at home and in the Diaspora that they have fed with hogwash?
“Few days after the celebration of World Press Freedom Day, we daresay that this valuable freedom does not amount to liberty to mislead and hoodwink the populace through concocted and jejune publications.
“The Buhari administration will always respect and uphold press freedom, but the onus lies on those prone to passing off fiction as facts, to remember that freedom demands concomitant responsibility. Those who further share and disseminate falsehood are also encouraged to embrace responsible conduct.”
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