Reacting to the President’s Sallah message, a former Special Assistant on Social Media to former President Goodluck Jonathan, Mr. Reno Omokri, on his Facebook page, condemned Buhari for addressing Muslims in Hausa.
Omokri stated, “In a country, whose official language is English, President Muhammadu Buhari broadcasts his Sallah message in Hausa! Would Trump (whose origin is German) address America in German? So what about all those Nigerians who can’t speak Hausa?
“Ideally, the President should have spoken in English first; then, if he feels like it, he may also speak in Hausa. The way he spoke only in Hausa makes it seem as if he is only concerned with those who gave him 97 per cent of the votes while those who gave him five per cent can take a hike!
“How would the rest of the country have felt if President Olusegun Obasanjo had released a Christmas broadcast to Nigerians in Yoruba or if President Goodluck Jonathan had done so in Ogbia?
“How can a national leader address Nigerians in a sectional language? Nigeria has never had a leader as divisive as Buhari! There is no difference between President Buhari and Nnamdi Kanu.
“President Buhari is the President of all Nigeria; he is not the President of only those who can speak Hausa! This is an outrage! (The late) President Umaru Yar’Adua also spoke to the BBC News by telephone. He is Fulani, like President Buhari; yet, he spoke in English because he was President of all of us!”
Nigeria, now a Banana Republic, says Ohanaeze
The umbrella group for the Igbo, the Ohanaeze Ndigbo, declared that Nigeria had descended to the level of a ‘Banana Republic’, if the President could address Nigerians in Hausa.
The Deputy Publicity Secretary of Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Mr. Chuks Ibegbu, who spoke to one of our correspondents in Enugu on Sunday, doubted the authenticity of the message.
Ibegbu noted that there was a big problem if the message was found to be authentic, saying the message should be investigated.
“First of all, we have to ascertain the veracity of the voice because in these days of technology, a lot of things can be cloned, including human voice,” the Ohanaeze spokesman.
“But if it is true that Mr. President addressed Nigerians in a local language, it means something is wrong somewhere.
“I want to believe that the voice is not real, but if it is Mr. President that actually spoke, then, it means that we have descended to the level of a Banana Republic.
“The Federal Government should tell Nigerians whether it is actually Mr. President’s voice, or not.”
Ibegbu noted that the address couldn’t have been meant for Nigerians if it was delivered in Hausa.
He said, “Which message; message to who; in what language? Is Hausa our lingua franca? If Mr. President wants to address us, he should talk to us in English, which is our lingua franca.”