Buhari was reported on Friday, August 16, 2019, to have kicked “against foreign medical treatment” during a speech to commission the Nigerian Air Force Reference Hospital in his hometown of Daura. I initially dismissed the story as a humorous spoof given Buhari’s notoriety as a UK medical tourist.
But it’s apparently real. Now get this: “According to the Punch of April 20, 2019, Buhari spent a total one year and 39 days abroad between May 2015 and April 2019, mostly on foreign medical tourism in the UK while healthcare at home falls apart on his watch”.
Buhari has spent more time in foreign hospitals–at the expense of Nigeria–than any past president or head of state, dead or alive. He beat the late Yar’adua’s record by a wide margin.
Clearly, apart from apparent dementia, Buhari also suffers from what I once called presidential dissociative disorder, which perpetually unmoors him from quotidian reality.
That’s why amid mass hunger and acute food shortages, he said Nigeria had achieved “food security” and shouldn’t import any more food. That also explains why amid the worst insecurity crisis in Nigeria’s entire history, he insists that not even his enemies can fail to acknowledge his giant “achievements” in security.
Farooq Kperogi, Ph.D. is assistant professor of Journalism and Citizen Media at Kennesaw State University, Georgia, USA. This article was first published in Nigerian Tribune. He owns a blog, Notes From Atlanta and tweets from @farooqkperogi.
The opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the author.