Saturday, 25 August 2018

Why I Trekked 800 Metres In Daura - Buhari

President Muhammadu Buhari on Friday dismissed insinuations that he trekked over 800 metres to prove his physical fitness to run for a second term in office.

The Nigerian leader had on Tuesday, August 21, joined thousands of Muslim faithful to observe the Eid el-Kabir prayer in his country home in Daura, Katsina state.

Thereafter, the nation’s commander in chief walked for more than 800 metres from the prayer ground to his private residence.

That action by Buhari, a retired army general, excited one of his media aides Garba Shehu, who told newsmen that by so doing, his principal had demonstrated his physical readiness to run again.

But Shehu’s remark was roundly condemned by Buhari’s critics even as some Nigerians chose to joke about it. One of them was former vice-president and 2019 presidential hopeful, Atiku Abubakar, who revealed that he regularly jogged over a mile while sharing a photo of himself on social media.

Abubakar is aspiring to become Nigeria’s President on the platform of the major opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

And in an apparent reaction to comments made by Atiku and the others, Buhari said that his long distance trekking on Sallah day was to show respect to thousands of people who wanted to greet him on the fateful day.

He made this known when he received some socio-political groups from Daura Emirate Council on Friday.“Let me react to some media reports about my trekking on Sallah day insinuating that I trekked to demonstrate my fitness for 2019 presidential election,” Buhari said.

"They [supporters] were not seeing me so I came down so they could see me.“I didn’t need to convince anyone about my health and the decision to contest for a second term- a decision that I made public in April this year,” he added.

CKN News had reported that a bubbly crowd was at the eid prayer ground to greet the President.“After the prayer, I noticed that many people wanted to see and I was in a black vehicle and security men were blocking them from seeing me,” he explained.“So, I opted to trek in spite the security implications because I knew nothing would happen to me by the grace of Allah."

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