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I Did Not Snub South East Economic Summit—Buhari

By Dipo Olowookere

President Muhammadu Buhari has reacted to media reports concerning his failure to honour the maiden edition of the South-East Economic and Security Summit in Enugu on Thursday.

It was reported that Mr Buhari snubbed the event after a pro-Biafra group, the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), warned the President to stay away from the region in his own interest.

But reacting to the issue in a statement signed by his media aide, Mr Garba Shehu, the President explained that a request to attend the Economic and Security Summit was given to him by the Minister of Science and Technology, Mr Ogbonnaya Onu.

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“The President happily accepted. The visit to Enugu was scheduled for Thursday 22nd as can be found on the weekly programme. After this was done, some other stakeholders from the South East came and advised him not to go in view of the closeness of the date to Christmas; given the sensitivity of the period to the people, a presidential visit may come with overexertion and possibly, be disruptive of Christmas.

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“In view of this, President Buhari requested that the event be pushed forward to January 2017. Given his nature, he did not insist. He said if the change of date is not possible, then the event could go on without him. That is what the organizers chose to do.

“The President did not, and he absolutely has no reason to snub anyone,” the statement explained.

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Dipo Olowookere is a journalist based in Nigeria that has passion for reporting business news stories. At his leisure time, he watches football and supports 3SC of Ibadan.

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