President Muhammadu Buhari at last has debunked raging rumours that he had died and a certain Jubril from Sudan used as his cloned double.
The rumours of his being cloned after his purported death following a prolonged ill-health and treatment in a London hospital last year, had gained momentum recently in Nigeria.
He however used the opportunity at a townhall meeting in Krakow, Poland with Nigerians resident in that country, to declare that he was very much the real Buhari even though many wanted him dead.
“A lot of people had hoped that l died during my ill health. I will soon celebrate my 76th. l am strong”, he told his audience in response to a question from a Nigerian who wanted to know if he was the real Buhari or the much talked about Jubril of Sudan.
Describing the speculation of his death as “ignorant and irreligious”, the President added that some people had intact “called the Vice-President and asked whether he should consider them because they thought l was dead.
“He visited me when l was convalescing. It is real me, l assure you. I will soon celebrate my 76th birthday and l am still going strong. I only get harassed by my grand children, they are getting too many”.
Delving into other matters, Buhari reiterated that his administration had degraded Boko Haram that used to control about 17 local government areas but now use hit-and-run method to attack innocent citizens
“This is because they understand the terrain better. It is not easy financing the war against terror”, he stated.
Declaring that the state of infrastructure when in the country when he assumed office was nothing to write home about, the President said that “now, we have been fighting that”; and that “I am trying to save a lot of money, l only go out when it is necessary. My priority is to secure Nigeria”.
He also said Nigeria had virtually stopped the importation of food, especially rice.
Responding to question on the falling standard of education, Buhari said “I am always upset when l see little children taking bowls about begging for food.
“They are being denied education. Educated people are removed from ethnicity and religious politics, which is a major problem we are having in our country”.
On women representation in his government, the President told the meeting: ‘‘I have plans for all Nigerians. I am not a male chauvinist. If I’m a chauvinist will I give the Finance Ministry to women?’’
The town hall meeting provided him an opportunity to interact with Nigerians living in Poland, which was the President’s first official engagement, ahead of the Conference of the Parties (COP24) of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), holding from December 2-4, 2018.