President Muhammadu Buhari’s wife, Aisha, yesterday returned to the country after a long holiday in the United Kingdom (UK) where she stayed back to attend to her health, following medical advice.
Her Director of Information, Suleiman Haruna, in a statement, said Mrs. Buhari, who arrived at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport at 4:30 a.m. via a British Airways flight, was received by the wife of Kogi State governor, Mrs. Rashida Bello, Senior Special Assistant to the President (Administration), Dr. Hajo Sani, and the wife of former governor of Nasarawa State, Mrs. Mairo Al-Makura, among others.
The First Lady who was full of gratitude to God for the safe journey after leaving Nigeria since August said she was happy to be home after a well-deserved rest and now fully rejuvenated to continue her work of improving health and wellbeing of women, children, and other vulnerable Nigerians.
“It has been a tradition for us. For like 20 to 27 years now, if our children are on holiday, we used to spend the holiday with them.
“I never abandoned my children and last year, I went to Spain and spent two months with Zahra when she gave birth. So, the same this year’s holiday in the U.K. I fell sick, so, I stayed back to see a doctor and the doctor advised me to stay back to attend to my health.
“From the U.K, I traveled to Saudi Arabia for hajj and returned to England on doctor’s advice and they also advised that I should slow down my activities.’’
She expressed gratitude to her husband for approving assistance to her office in the mission of improving the lives and wellbeing of women and children in Nigeria while she was away.
Mrs. Buhari cautioned against spreading fake news in the country, saying that it did no good to anyone, and urged stakeholders to make efforts to check the menace.
“The genesis of this fake news started when my husband fell sick and perpetrators of this act were showing fake ambulance, hospital and dead body suggesting that my husband is dead.
“That time, I received so many calls from other first ladies and presidents of other countries to confirm; so I called the attention of the Nigeria Communication Commission (NCC), the Nigerian Broadcasting Corporation (NBC) and the National Orientation Agency (NOA) to the fake news.
“Fake news will lead this country to something else if actions are not taken against it with immediate effect,’’ she said.
Meanwhile, the Enugu State chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC) said yesterday that the return of Mrs. Aisha Buhari to the country had put a stop to the circulation of fake news to the effect that she had been divorced by her husband.
Prior to her return, the social media were flooded with news of a plan by Buhari to marry his Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Hajiyya Saddiya Farouk, but the presidency denied any such plan.
Addressing journalists yesterday, the Enugu State Publicity Secretary of APC, Mrs. Kate Ofor, said a legitimate means should be used to stop fake news and make people realise that the social media have no gatekeeper.
“Is it rational for people to jump into conclusions when Mr. President has not circulated any wedding invitation? Why should they drag the name of innocent Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Sadiya Farouk in the mud? Can you imagine that even when President Buhari safely returned from medical vacation, which many adjudged a rare miracle, some fake news purveyors still went to town with lies? We must learn to discern the genuine from fake news, especially the mainstream media,” she said.
Ofor urged Aisha to use her membership of the United Kingdom Vocational Training and Charitable Trust and the International Health and Beauty Council to continue her Future Assured programme of improving the prosperity of women and youths.