Being the president’s son comes with perks. Being immune from the slings and arrows of an uncertain future is boon enough for the average Nigerian. If the promise of a life of luxury and schooling in the best institutions money can get — or bribe — isn’t enough, surely, the promise of prompt world-class treatment should anything from a minor cold to a major accident happen, will be enough to make you sign the dotted lines.
Yusuf Buhari, the son of President Muhammadu Buhari might not have signed any dotted lines to be born to the man who rules Africa’s most populous nation, but he is surely not complaining about the special treatment accruable to him, courtesy of his father’s position.
Recall that Yusuf was involved in a freak accident a few years back. As he rode leisurely around Gwarinpa, Abuja, the unthinkable happened and the president’s son had to contend with a fractured rib and head injuries. In the blink of an eye, he was taken to the Cedacrest Hospital, Abuja before being flown abroad for further treatment and to enjoy a period of prolonged convalescence.
That is not the news. The news is that since the incident, Yusuf has largely gone low profile. Perhaps it dawned on him that being privileged is no barrier against unwanted public attention, and sometimes undeserved opprobrium. However, that didn’t stop the public from getting on his case after he enrolled for and completed his national youth service in less than half a year.
Even as the shouts of “special treatment!” rent the air, the graduate of the University of Surrey mostly wisely kept to himself. It got to a point where many wondered if the president hadn’t commanded him to avoid any more controversies. Certainly, observers noted that the Buhari siblings were all on their best behaviour during the days leading up to the general election.
With Buhari returned for another four years, the coast seems clear for his people to come out firing with no worries about electoral consequences. Not that Yusuf is particularly the naughty sort but any appearance he makes is remarkable just by virtue of the fact that he seldom makes any. No wonder eyebrows were raised when the First Son was seen in the company of his father and Atiku Bagudu, governor of Kebbi. The trio were in the Holy Land to attend the third edition of the Future Investment Initiative (FII) in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, last Tuesday.