Sunday 23 April 2023

PHOTOS: President Muhammadu Buhari’s Last Sallah Homage

As they often say, every beginning has an end. Just like yesterday when President Muhammadu Buhari celebrated his first Sallah as President, he has now celebrated his last Sallah as President.

Usually, President Buhari celebrates Eid-el-Fitr in Abuja and Eid-El-Kabir in Daura. However, by the time we celebrate Eid-El-Kabir this year, he will no longer be President.

During the Sallah homage, President Buhari was at his jocular best. One thing people may not know about the President is his humorous side. Often, people only see the strict military man, but few Nigerians get to see his funny side. Most times, when he receives visitors, he leaves them reeling with laughter, as seen in most of the pictures.

However, sometimes when he jokes about certain issues, it is often misconstrued, like when he jokingly told the former Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, that he could see he was losing weight, which meant he was working hard.

During the Sallah homage, President Buhari revealed that he was excited to retire to his hometown in Daura. After years of working hard for the country, he just wanted some rest and relaxation. He even joked that if anyone made noise in Daura, he would leave for the Niger Republic!

“I can’t wait to go home to Daura. If they make any noise to disturb me in Daura, I will leave for the Niger Republic. I deliberately arranged to be as far away as possible. I got what I wanted and will quietly retire to my hometown,” “In spite of technology, it will not be easy to get to Daura,” he said.

Buhari also took the time to reflect on his time as President and apologized to anyone he might have hurt along the way. He was grateful for the opportunity to serve the country and thanked Nigerians for voting him into power twice, without any monetary incentives.

“God gave me an incredible opportunity to serve the country. We are all humans, if I have hurt some people along the line of my service to the country, I ask that they pardon me.

“All those that I have hurt, I ask that they pardon me.”

“I think it is a good coincidence for me to say goodbye to you, and thank you for tolerating me for almost eight years,” the President said.

President Buhari also reminisced about his political journey and how he had been incarcerated for three years after a coup that ousted him from power in August 1984. He contested elections three times but wasn’t successful until he dared the politicians and technology came to his rescue.

“I dared the politicians and ended up at the Supreme Court three times. They laughed at me, and I responded, ‘God dey.’ God sent technology to my rescue, with Permanent Voters’ Card (PVC). The fraudulent people became unemployed,” the President noted.

President Buhari said the flaunting of ethnic and religious cards in elections was “rubbish” as the presiding justices at the Supreme Court that squashed his cases were Muslims, from the North, Zaria in Kaduna State, Niger, and Jigawa.

“It is good to reflect on what used to happen here, in FCT, especially on security. Security is not only about the North East, it also spread to the FCT and all over the country.

“Those who wanted to make our lives uncomfortable reached the FCT, and they have been marginalized,’’ he added.

He emphasized the importance of democracy as a system of government and its ability to foster a sense of belonging among citizens. He even joked that he had been counting the years, and that democracy was good because it allowed someone from one end of the country to rule for eight years.

“I have been counting the years. Democracy is good, otherwise how can someone come from one end of the country to rule for eight years. My home town, Daura, is about eight kilometres to Niger Republic.

“When the Minister of Interior wanted to shut down petrol stations ten kilometres from the border, there was a fuel station close to my house, and I pleaded if he could allow it to keep operating,” he added.

The Minister of FCT also thanked the President for hosting residents for the 9th Eid-el-Fitr and for allowing more people into the Villa for the last homage before his handing over on May 29th. He commended President Buhari’s role in the conceptualization and realization of the FCT, reminding him of his contribution as part of the military Recce Team for the capital in the 70s.

All in all, President Buhari’s last Sallah homage was a memorable one. It was great to see his funny side and to hear him reflect on his time as President. It’s definitely the end of an era, but we wish him all the best in his retirement.

More photos:

Story: Leadership

Photos: Cable



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