By Uche Amunike
Former Nigerian Military Head of State, General Abdulsalami Abubakar, has been reportedly ill and flown overseas to receive medical treatment, about three weeks ago, according to close sources.
Family sources admitted he was initially flown to Dubai in the United Arab Emirates for medical reasons but eventually admitted at a specialist hospital in the United Kingdom.
According to the source, General Abdulsalami Abubakar went for the medical trip overseas in the company of his wife, former First Lady, Justice Fati Abubakar.
So far, his in-law, the Niger State Governor, Abubakar Bello already paid him a visit, shortly after the All Progressives Congress presidential primary election.
According to further reports, however, General Abdulsalami Abubakar, who is the National Peace Committee (NPC) Chairman is already in stable condition, having been discharged from the London hospital, Sunday.
According to Garba Shehu, Presidential spokesman of General Muhammadu Buhari’s government, in a press release, Monday, General Abdulsalami Abubakar is now comfortably in a London apartment and in no serious condition as he is already out of the hospital.
Hear him: ‘I just ended a visit to His Excellency Abdulsalami Abubakar, former Head of State. He is out of the hospital in a London apartment and apparently in no serious condition.’
‘He was his jovial self, maintaining a keen interest in developments back at home in Nigeria. Please, no cause for alarm.’
Unfortunately, the former head of state missed the Governorship election held in Ekiti State because of his medical condition and was unable to attend the meeting held on June 15 where every gubernatorial candidate signed a peace pact.
He was however represented by the Bishop of Sokoto diocese, Matthew Kukah and other members of the committee.
General Abubakar, also turned 80 on June 13, 2022 but was unable to celebrate his birthday as earlier planned because of his ill-health.That, not withstanding, he was congratulated through press releases by President Muhammadu Buhari , State Governors and other leaders who through their messages appreciated him for his achievements patriotism and particularly for ushering in democratic governance in Nigeria on May 29 1999 after having gone through military dictatorship for two decades.
In their different statements to him on his birthday, he was generally extolled as a true statement who holds the unity of Nigeria dearly even even out of office.
President Muhammadu Buhari, in his message to him, said that Nigeria owes Abubaksr a debt of gratitude for the part he plays in putting the interests of the country first and working for a better Nigeria and a better Africa. He further extolled his humility and humanity in ensuring that the country witnessed a peaceful transition to democratic government in 1999 and orchestrated a peaceful handover process in 2015.
Former President Goodluck Jonathan described him as a peacemaker and nation builder owing to his activities at the national peace committee.
His words: ‘Your commitment to our national aspirations and considerable achievements as Head of State at a momentous period in the history of our nation has continued to be referenced as a watershed in the birthing of the Fourth Republic.’
‘Out of office, you have earned a reputation as a peace maker and nation builder for your key roles in promoting unity, mutual harmony and peaceful elections through the National Peace Committee.’
On his part, former Vice President and PDP Presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar described him as a great patriot and epitome of unity.
His words: ‘Keeping a promise is one of the greatest signs of a great leader. General Abdulsalami has met that criterion. I’m proud to associate with such a great and patriotic Nigerian. May Allah grant the General more good health and longer life to continue to serve humanity.’
Governor Okowa of Delta state on his part, appreciated the octogenarian for his continued pursuit of peace and credible electoral process in Nigeria.