A day after President Muhammadu Buhari wrote a letter to the National Assembly on his inability to return home, the Acting President Yemi Osinbajo and the leadership of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) on Monday held a closed-door meeting.
Osinbajo, who spoke with journalists after the meeting, declared that he could not disclose the health status of the President, whose non-return from London after a 10-day medical checkup has put the country on edge.
In his first press interview since he became Acting President, Osinbajo told State House correspondents in his office in Abuja that Buhari is hale and hearty and that he spoke with him on phone earlier in the day to inform him of the anti-government street protests.
He held the lengthy closed-door meeting with the APC National Chairman, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun.
The Acting President maintained that “the President is hale and hearty. I spoke to him just this afternoon and we had a long conversation.”
“He was interested in knowing about the budget process and how far we have gone and the meeting today with the private sector and the economic recovery growth plan and I informed him about the protest march and feedback about what people are saying about the economy. He is in good shape.”
On when Buhari is expected back home to resume his duties, the Acting President said that “just like he said in his letter to the National Assembly, he needs to go for a cycle of tests and once he sees the test results and gets medical advice, we expect him back very soon.”
Asked why it had been difficult to disclose to Nigerians the exact health challenge of the President, Osinbajo replied: “I think that the health status of Mr. President is an issue that only Mr. President would discuss at the appropriate time.”
“Again, he is running tests and all of that. Before you will be able to determine your health status, you must be able to say this is my health status. I’ll do the tests my doctors have advised me to do and will wait for the outcome of the tests and know my status,” he said.
Osinbajo also reiterated his declaration that he was not under any pressure by state governors or any other Nigerians as a result of the anxiety and apprehension caused by Buhari’s health issues and long absence.
According to him, “I am not under any pressure to resign. I was voted for by the people of this nation, I and Mr. President and so the people of this nation have not asked us to resign.
“I am absolutely not under any pressure whatsoever. The truth is that there has been no pressure from any source asking me to resign,” he insisted.
Also yesterday, there were reports and photographs of some Nigerians in the United Kingdom storming the Nigerian High Commission to demand to see President Buhari.
The protesters, who were in front of the country’s High Commission in UK, asked that the President addressed them in person.
Buhari, who was expected to resume duties yesterday, following the expiration of his 10-day vacation announced the extension of the trip indefinitely on Sunday.
In a statement signed by his media aide, Femi Adesina, the President said that he has sent a letter to the National Assembly informing them of the new development.