- Asiwaju Bola Tinubu was noticeably absent as President Muhammadu Buhari visited Lagos to inaugurate projects
- Buhari did not attend the 11th Bola Tinubu Colloquium which held in Abuja; even though the APC national leader reportedly expected him to
- Tinubu’s spokesman, however, dismissed rumours of a rift between his boss and the president
- The spokesman stated that Tinubu, who is currently abroad, worked with the initial plan of April 29 and April 30 for the president’s visit
The national leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, was nowhere to be seen from 10:32am on Wednesday, April 24 when the presidential jet touched down in Lagos till 3:20pm when it conveyed President Muhammadu Buhari back to Abuja.
The president has visited the state to inaugurate some projects by the outgoing administration of Governor Akinwunmi Ambode, The Cable reports.
Legit.ng gathers that the president was received at the Lagos airport by the governor and his Oyo and Ondo counterparts, Abiola Ajimobi and Rotimi Akeredolu.
Governors Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti and Ibikunle Amosun of Ogun, saw the president off. The governor-elect of Lagos, Babajide Sanwo-Olu and his deputy, Obafemi Hamzat, were also on ground.
Buhari last inaugurated projects in Lagos on March 28, 2018 when the APC national leader marked his 66th birthday. The president subsequently proceeded to Eko Hotel and Suites, Lagos, where the 10th Bola Tinubu Colloquium held.
The president was, however, not present at the 11th edition of the programme which held for the first time in Abuja.
Buhari opted to attend the launch of the Micro Pension Plan instead; even though sources disclosed that one of reasons the organisers of the event hosted the 2019 edition in Abuja was to make it easy for the president to attend.
The president was represented by Vice President Yemi Obasanjo; however, there were indications that Tinubu expected Buhari to grace the occasion.
In a copy of Tinubu’s prepared speech, the former Lagos governor reportedly thanked the president for “choosing to participate in the event”.
The speech reportedly read: “I want to thank President Buhari for sharing this special day with me. The pressure of affairs facing the leader of a nation is such that you could have easily found reasons why you could not participate.
“Instead you chose to be here and to even give me the compound honor of accepting to be the chairman of this occasion.”
Tinubu ended up not reading that speech offhand.
The APC national leader’s spokesman, Tunde Rahman, however, dismissed reports of any rift between his principal and Buhari.
Rahman attributed Tinubu’s absence to the change in the plan of the visit; asserting that the relationship between the duo is cordial.
He said the APC leader, who is currently abroad, worked with the initial plan of April 29 and April 30 for the president’s visit.
He said: “Asiwaju Bola Tinubu is out of the country at the moment. He has been away for like a week now.
“He was working on the initial schedule under which President Muhammadu Buhari was to be in Lagos April 29th and 30th.
“With that in mind, he had planned his itinerary abroad. So he did not deliberately stay away from the event. He has no reason whatsoever to stay away.”
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Meanwhile, Legit.ng previously reported that President Muhammadu Buhari commended Governor Akinwunmi Ambode for a satisfactory job performance, saying that the governor deserved to be praised for his contributions to the development of Laos state.
Buhari gave the commendation in his speech on Wednesday, after inaugurating the new Oshodi Transport Interchange; the Mass Transit Medium and High capacity public buses; and the reconstructed Murtala Mohammed International Airport Road by the Lagos state government.
The president also expressed gratitude to the people of the state for their support to his administration and the roles they played in ensuring his re-election for another four-year term in office.
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