It was not a surprise to many, given the proclivity of the nation’s governors. Even the country’s President and Commander-in-Chief, General Muhammadu Buhari; his deputy, Professor Yemi Osinbajo were conspicuously, physically absent at the burial of the nation’s Chief of Army Staff, General Ibrahim Attahiru, Chief of Army Staff, and 10 others who died in a plane crash while on national assignment.
However, President Buhari was represented by Defence Minister, Bashir Magashi.
On Sunday, according to a statement from his office, President Muhammadu Buhari described Lt. General Ibrahim Attahiru, the late Chief Army Staff as an outstanding soldier and an institution builder, who fought valiantly for Nigeria until he breathed his last.
In a telephone conversation Sunday evening with Mrs. Fati Ibrahim Attahiru, the wife of the late COAS and the spouses of the other deceased officers through her, President Buhari hailed the sacrifices of the military men who lost their lives and the Armed Forces in general, saying that Nigerians will continue to appreciate and support the fearlessness with which our courageous soldiers are confronting the threats facing the nation.
He gave the grieving spouses assurances that the nation will never forget the supreme sacrifice of their spouses, urging them to take solace in the surge of extraordinary feelings of emotions across regions, religions and tribes all over the country in appreciation of their sacrifices.
The President who had earlier given directives to the Defense headquarters and the Ministry of Defence to do everything a government can do to provide comfort and ease the hardships of the families of the deceased, prayed to Almighty God to repose their souls and grant their families the fortitude to bear the losses.
Mrs Attahiru, on behalf of the rest of the families thanked the President for the love and care he has shown to them.
But for five Governors, Abdullahi Ganduje (Kano), Atiku Bagudu (Kebbi), Bello Matawalle (Zamfara), Aminu Tambuwal (Sokoto), and Inuwa Yahaya (Gombe), they were frolicking in Kano at the wedding of one the sons of Abubakar Malami, Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abiru Rahman Malami.
Nigerians were jarred at the behaviour of these top government officials. Kano stands out because one of the interred generals, Kuliya, was from the state.
If these men lost their lives in the service of the nation, why were these prominent public servants fiddling while tears flowed freely? many ask.
On social media, the umbrage was uncontrollable.
Many wonder if there is something the governors, minister, and presidency know that mourning Nigerians.