The Presidency has said Nigerians including media outfits are free to address President Muhammadu Buhari by his military rank of Major General as the administration promotes freedom of speech in the country.
Mr Femi Adesina, the president’s spokesman, stated this while reacting to a decision of one of the daily newspapers that it would henceforth address the president by his rank of Major-General.
The presidential aide said: “Nothing untoward in it. It is a rank the president attained by dint of hard work before he retired from the Nigerian Army. And today, constitutionally, he is also Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces.
“All over the world, just as in our country, a large number of retired military officers are now democrats. It does not make those who did not pass through military service better than them.
“Rather than being pejorative, addressing President Buhari by his military rank is another testimony to free speech and freedom of the press, which this administration (or regime, if anyone prefers: it is a matter of semantics) has pledged to uphold and preserve.” (NAN)