Mohammed Alhaji Yakubu, a member of the National Executive Committee of Arewa Consultative Forum (ACF), a socio-cultural and pressure group for northern Nigeria, an interview with The Sun said that even if President Buhari who is currently on medical vacation in the UK, ends up on a wheelchair, the North will still vote for him come 2019 emphasizing that he should not resign his position just because he is ill.
In the ACF chieftain’s words, he said;
“I will not advise him to resign. You will recall that when former President Olusegun Obasanjo was asking the then ailing President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua to resign, I granted an interview to your newspaper, as the youth leader of Northern Union, telling Nigerians that even on wheelchair, we will support Yar’Adua to rule the country. Unfortunately he died. I am also making the same statement today that Buhari should not resign, even if he is on wheelchair, North and people of Nigeria will vote him in 2019. I am not just associating myself with Buhari, I am advocating for good governance under President Buhari. I don’t think that it is proper for anybody to humiliate Buhari out of office by mounting pressure on him to resign. It is not fair; it is not just, it is not proper. We have election time table, if you don’t like him, vote him out during the election, but I will not support anybody that will want to humiliate the President out of office. As long as he is alive, it is not right to demand of him to resign.”
Speaking further, he said that President Buhari’s health challenge would not in anyway stop him from performing his duty. He went on to give examples of past US Presidents who despite their health challenges lived up to expectations.
“Yes, I can give example from America where we copied our democracy from; if you remember, one of the early American Presidents, Franklin D. Roosevelt served his country for 12 years. As a young man, Roosevelt became crippled by polio. He could not stand, and he spent most of his life on a wheelchair. When many people thought that the illness would end his political career, Roosevelt became American President for the first time in 1933. Roosevelt pioneered a lot of developments for America, his government spent lots of money to create new job, built roads, bridges, new schools and did other important things to help the population. Americans saw that Roosevelt could do a lot for his country and they elected him for a second time in 1936 on wheelchair. So we should do away with the mentality that when the President’s health challenge is physical, he cannot perform his official duty, no, President Buhari can still function in office even on wheelchair as long as his illness has nothing to do with his brain and reasoning faculty”.