Tuesday, 7 June 2016

Buhari’s medical trip, an embarrassment to Nigeria — Okurounmu

A former Secretary-General of the Yoruba socio-cultural group, Afenifere, Senator Femi Okurounmu, says President Muhammadu Buhari’s medical trip to London is an embarrassment and a shame to the All Progressives Congress-led Federal Government.

Okurounmu said although the President had the right to seek medical attention, it was unpatriotic for him to travel abroad.

He said apart from being an indictment of the country’s medical system, the medical trip portended a grave danger to the health of the President.

Okurounmu, who represented Ogun-Central senatorial district from 1999 to 2003, spoke in an interview with our correspondent on Monday.

He said, “My view of the President’s medical trip abroad is that it is an indictment of our medical system, and a national embarrassment. If the President could not trust Nigerian doctors to treat a mere ear infection, and had to travel abroad, it showed his level of patriotism and pride.

“Aside this, for the sake of national security, it is unwise for an incumbent President to be seeking medical treatment abroad. Many presidents do not travel out of their countries for medical treatment because the foreign doctors could further incapacitate them or compound their ailments. One never knows which interest the receiving country is protecting.”

The Afenifere chieftain also accused the President of encouraging corruption by failing to include the names of looters in the list of recovered loot released on Saturday.

According to him, by naming and shaming the looters, the President would have succeeded in setting a precedent for future occurrences.

“If Buhari wants to fight corruption successfully, he needs to name the looters, try them and jail them. It is very important to name the looters so that the country would  know them. He is encouraging corruption by merely recovering looted funds and keeping the identity of the thieves from the public. He should do more than name them; he should ensure that they are jailed.”

Reacting to a claim by the Senate President, Bukola Saraki, that some robbers burgled his home in Ilorin,  the Kwara State capital, about two weeks ago and stole N12m cash, Okurounmu said keeping that amount at home was suspicious.

He said keeping such an amount at home when the banks were working was a pointer to some illegitimate dealings.