Just about a week after allegations surfaced that President Muhammadu Buhari’s daughter, Hanan Buhari, was the reason a Nigerian businessman named Mr Anthony Okolie was detained by the State Security Service (SSS), she seems to have been embroiled in yet another round of political scandal.
Hanan Buhari was caught by paparazzi over the weekend alighting from one of the jets in the presidential fleet. From there, she proceeded to greet some dignitaries who welcomed her at the airport. It was later revealed that Hanan was going to attend an event organized for photographers. Being a photographer herself, Hanan felt compelled to grace it with some presidential photography. But what unsettled some Nigerians particularly was taking along one of the presidential jets meant only for the president and for official functions on a private trip.
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This particular event, therefore, seems to have revived discussions surrounding the abuse of official privilege in recent Nigerian history.
In January 1996, one of Gen Sani Abacha’s sons took one of the jets in the presidential fleet and went frolicking with his friends in the sky. Fate did not smile so well on the young Abacha as the airplane crashed and all the passengers and crew died. Abacha tried to cover up the tragic and embarrassing event to no avail.
For Hanan Buhari, however, no one knows for sure what particular confidence or control which she possesses in Aso Rock for to have successfully convinced her dad and his inner circle into going against what they swore to protect against while campaigning. In fact, to put Buhari’s humility and talakawa philosophy into practice, his political campaign days were riddled with him partaking in photo-ops shot in a commercial flight. Could it be that the Buhari family has suddenly realized that the ascetic lifestyle which he once swore by was a waste?
More alarming is the fact that Hanan, one of the president’s children who was hitherto hidden and shielded from the glitz and glamour of being a member of the First Family in an ostentatious society like Nigeria, is now no more holding back. With the glamorous lifestyle which even Hanan’s mother, the First Lady Aisha Buhari, commands anywhere she goes, it is arguable that signs show she might outdo her better-known two elder siblings now that she has come of age.
Whether this stunt recently being pulled by Hanan Buhari is a testament to the flexing of muscles which her mother, Aisha Buhari, recently began to signal the likes of Mamman Daura, this may just have been that killer strategy where Aisha is using her daughter to emphasize how influential she is in Aso Rock.
Already, the usual noise which accompanied such abuse of official powers, before All Progressives Congress (APC) came to power in 2015, is no more existent. After all, when the wife of former President Goodluck Jonathan made the mistake of flying abroad without her husband in a presidential jet, all hell broke loose – but not anymore.
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While the presidency itself has kept strangely mute over the two strange matters involving Hanan Buhari; the Buhari Media Organization (BMO), has come out to defend the recent actions and engagements of the president’s daughter.
Nigerians are keenly watching; looking out for more signs of executive abuse of power. But the rather unfortunate result of such action is that other citizens may commit to such habit of abusing privileges associated with official powers once they assume exalted seats.
Featured Image Source: Notes From Atlanta
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