The Nigerian Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed has revealed the reason behind President Muhammadu Buhari’s decision to travel to the UK to attend to his health instead of staying in Nigeria to be attended to by local doctors.
Speaking during a live radio programme titled, ‘Morning Crossfire’ on Nigeria Info Abuja 95.1FM on Thursday, the information minister revealed that the President shunned the Nigerian healthcare sector for the UK’s is because he deserves the best medical attention available.
The response comes after an angry Nigerian called in to criticise the All Progressives Congress-led government for going back on its promise to bar public officials from travelling abroad for medical treatment at the expense of taxpayers.
Lai Mohammed said: “My answer is very simple. Mr President is our father, he is the leader of the nation and I think he deserves the best in terms of medical treatment.”
Further responding to another question on why the President Muhammadu Buhari-led government was flouting court orders regarding the release of some detained politically exposed persons, the minister added: “If it is a court order and the order is not appealed, then you have flouted the order.
“But if the order is appealed, then it is not a final order. Also, you have to balance national security with the rule of law. In the case of Ifeanyi Ubah, I think it is neither here nor there.”
Another caller however commended the efforts of the Federal Government but lamented the high cost of food items in the market especially rice to which Lai Mohammed responded: “The truth of the matter is that in 2015, this government imported 580,000MT of rice. We cut it down to 58,000MT in 2016 and we have saved about $200m in the process.
“Yes, we understand the cost of rice is still high and we are going to intervene through price fixing by subsidising the cost of transportation."