The ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) has denied reports that President Muhammadu Buhari may have tested positive for Covid-19 and flown abroad for treatment, saying the president is hale and hearty and has been leading the charge against the deadly virus.
This came as the party advised Nigerians to desist from conspiracy theories regarding Saturday’s early morning explosion in Ondo state.
Accusing those it described as wailers, of wanting the president dead since 2015, the APC in a statement by its National Publicity Secretary, Mallam Lanre Issa-Onilu also added that while few Nigerians want a “talking president”, majority of those who gave him his current mandate want a “working president”.
According to the APC, “the wailers who have severally professed their death wish for President Buhari since 2015 have, again, found their voices amid the coronavirus outbreak. From conjuring and spreading fake news on the president’s coronavirus test result, to a spurious allegation of the hijacking of a teaching hospital ventilator to the villa and to the purported smuggling of the President to the United Kingdom, they are up to their ignominious pastime and tired antics”.
It added that; “a few Nigerians want a President whose preoccupation is talking; while the majority voted for a President who is deploying his energy to working. We all can see the effect of the grand efforts being led by President Muhammadu Buhari to contain the coronavirus (COVID-19) global pandemic in Nigeria.
“Like a legendary troop commander that the President is, he is steadily and vigorously leading the charge against the coronavirus pandemic. With our President mobilising human and material resources, we, as a country, are doing commendably so far as statistics are showing in comparison to even most advanced nations.
“Under the keen supervision of the President, there is a visible and proactive network of national response structures working in tandem with all states.
“The efficiency of the field workers and other state actors has ensured we are able to minimize the spread so far with many states taking proactive steps to forestall widespread of the very infectious virus.
“We are glad to see many Nigerians rallying behind the President with their own contributions. Notably, the news of the ministers’ voluntary donation of 50 per cent of their March salary is unprecedented. We commend the foresight of the Minister of State for Transportation, Sen. Gbemisola Saraki in coordinating this patriotic action.
“Beyond the monetary donation, the gesture by the ministers would bolster the confidence of ordinary Nigerians to call up the resilience for which we are known for. It would also encourage many more organisations and other well-to-do Nigerians to lend support to the Presidential committee.
“We will not be distracted or deterred because their unpatriotic actions serve as a reminder to the failed and rejected past. Right now, the task before us is for all Nigerians to focus and collectively beat the coronavirus. To achieve this, the president is tirelessly leading the charge through action”, the APC declared.
Meanwhile, following Saturday’s early morning explosion which occurred in Ilu-Abo, along the Akure-Owo expressway, the APC has sympathised with victims of the explosion and the government of Ondo State.
The ruling party noted that going by the images of the buildings and other property destroyed as a result of the explosion, it was clear that the blast was a powerful one.
“However, we must desist from unnecessary and unfounded conspiracies surrounding the unfortunate explosion.
“The Ondo state governor, Rotimi Akeredolu (SAN) has promptly visited the scene to assess the extent of damage and has been briefed by the security chiefs who reported that the accidental explosion occurred in a vehicle transporting explosives to a storage facility in a neighbouring state.
“While relevant authorities ascertain if there are casualties, we urge calm and assure all residents that the authorities are attending to the situation with a cordon in place and a bomb squad deployed to the area. There is no cause for further alarm.
“In the meantime, we are confident that the state government will put in place rehabilitation measures to cater for people displaced and affected by the explosion. Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims”.