#IStandWithBuhari: Once again, Nigerians brawl online over Buhari’s presidency

It’s no longer news that Nigerian president, Muhammadu Buhari, is a divisive figure in the country. Starkly contrasting emotions are triggered every time he is in the news, or more often, when he fails to make an appearance.

At the outset of the coronavirus pandemic, the president was hauled over the coals for his refusal to address the nation, as was the case in almost every country of the world.

When he eventually did, many criticised his decision to go with a pre-recorded message rather than a live interaction with Nigerians (we won’t be talking about the furore over the way he mispronounced COVID-19 here).

And that’s not the end of the controversies. There was national outrage over alleged lopsidedness in the allocation of palliatives to cushion the effect of the lockdown on Nigerians, while others were more concerned over the size of the palliatives, which they considered to be negligible given the hardship in the land.

Besieged with cries over the adverse effect of the lockdown on the economy, President Buhari announced a phased reopening of the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, Lagos and Ogun States. And this too has been met with controversies as many believe the virus is yet to peak and the lack of social distancing could result in a more deadly second wave of infections.

With the economy on its knees over plummeting oil prices, livelihoods lost as a result of the lockdown to curb the spread of the virus and climbing death toll across the country, festering frustrations have come to the surface and Nigerians have turned on the government, once again.

Some say the chaos could have been prevented had Buhari acted swiftly by closing the country’s airspace. Others blamed the government for its failure to build strong infrastructure and a robust healthcare system that would have ameliorated the suffering being experienced today.

The opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) even accused the government of embezzling the funds voted in the Special Intervention Programme (SIP).

But supporters of the president today came out to defend his action and general handling of the nation’s affairs.

Trending the hashtag #IStandWithBuhari, they argue that the country would have been in a worse place but for the astute management of the president.

They called on the president to keep up the good job and not be deterred by the antics of naysayers.

Here are the opinions of some supporters of the president.

But a great many believe the president is to blame for the country’s current woes, and they expressed their opinions in unequivocal terms.

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