There is a shocking binary in the way the presidency continues to rationalize President Muhammadu Buhari’s refusal to visit conflict spots around the country where hundreds of Nigerians have been killed since late 2017 until months after the incidents.
How Aso Rock sees things vs. how Nigerians see things
The way the presidency sees it, if Pres. Buhari had quickly visited to console grieving citizens at the moment of their pain and loss, it would imply that he is playing politics or giving eye service. The presidency argues that Buhari chose to act on the situation rather than visit the bereaved, as though it is impossible to do the two simultaneously.
According to the presidency, the most suitable time for the visit is now, several weeks after the incident.
Garba Shehu, one of the president’s spokesmen, made the claim again in an interview with Channels Television on Monday morning.
“He thought now is the best time to go there and see things on the ground and make important decisions. I would have thought that if he had intended to inject politics into it, he would have been on the plane the morning after the incident (in Benue),” Shehu said.
“But he chose to act, rather than to talk and as you have seen yourself over this period of time, there was intervention by law enforcement, there was intervention by NEMA and aid agencies.”
Shehu also berated those accusing the president of “playing politics” with the killings.
“They are just celebrating and exalting over all of these matters instead of coming together so that we can solve the problems,” he said.