Months after President Muhammadu Buhari was diagnosed with an ear infection and flown to London for treatment, there has been a debate on how much was spent on his treatment.
The presidency reacts to allegations claiming that president Buhari spent about £6 million (almost N3 billion) to treat an ear infection in London.
The Kennesaw State University professor was instigated to write about the ear infection treatment after a publication by Vanguard Newspapers on June 9, 2016, which stated that a senior lecturer at the department of Political Science, University of Ilorin, Dr. Lukman Saka criticized the recent trip of president Muhammadu Buhari to the United Kingdom for medical treatment on one of his ear problems.
Professor Kperogi thus wrote:
“Precisely! I agree with Dr. Pantami. As student union leaders in BUK in the early 1990s, we used this verse to mobilize students to take ownership of their lives and fight injustice. You shouldn’t sit listlessly and watch a president who got elected on the promise of change live in the lavish luxuries of the past while the people he governs starve and die.
“A president who promised you change went to London, spent 6 million pounds (that’s up to 3 billion Naira) just to treat an ear infection when all Nigerian teaching hospitals combined were allocated less than 3 billion Naira in the budget, and when he budgeted up to 4 billion Naira for Aso Rock Clinic that he doesn’t even use AND after he banned all government officials from traveling abroad for medical treatment. We should fight to change this.
“Allah will not change this for us until we change the self-annihilating stupidity in us that allows us to think that it’s OK for leaders to lie and cheat and exploit the masses so long as the leaders share the same region and religion as us.
“Allah will not change our condition until we purge ourselves of the predilection to ignore home truths, evade uncomfortable facts, dwell in sentimental escapism, and attack purveyors of home truths and uncomfortable facts. This is a great verse, and I thank Dr. Pantami for bringing it to our attention again.
Garba Shehu, in his response to Kperogi’s post, wrote on Facebook.
“The disclosure on Prof. Farooq Kperogi’s wall that President Muhammadu Buhari’s ear treatment in the United Kingdom cost a whopping six million pounds must have shocked many of the respected scholar’s followers.
“The story reads like an incredible tale by moonlight that belongs to a different era, which fortunately is now history. That’s when a fortunate lady saved USD 15 million for medical treatment! But was it possible that the account of this balanced journalism teacher was hacked?
“I will give him the benefit of the doubt. Given the austere president we have, Muhammadu Buhari would not have approved this amount if he was shown a six million Pounds bill. I won’t be surprised if the President may have asked if the fat bill was for the purchase of a brand new pair of ears!
“I’m prepared to share documents with Farooq, one of the brightest ever produced from the Bayero University Kano (BUK) that the whole treatment, including a follow-up visit by a specialist to Nigeria didn’t cost 50,000 pounds.
“For the records, the administration advanced a higher sum, but the President’s doctor returned the balance to the treasury. Indeed, it’s a New Day, and President Buhari’s change mantra is real. Let no one confuse my fellow countrymen and women.”