Top aides of President Muhammadu Buhari were denied access into the Presidential Villa in Abuja after returning from the burial of late Chief of Staff to President Buhari, Abba Kyari, on Saturday.
The burial at Gudu Cemetery, Abuja was attended by a large crowd – most of whom had no nose mask or hand gloves on them for protection against Coronavirus.
This development violated the social distancing rule put in place by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control and exposed attendees including the Presidential aides to the risk of contracting the highly contagious and deadly disease, which claimed the life of Kyari.
Some of the Presidency aides refused access into Aso Villa after returning from the burial include State House Chief Protocol Officer, Ambassador Lawal Kazaure, Special Assistant to the President, Yusuf Sabiu, a nephew to the President, Musa Haro Daura, and Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity to the President, Garba Shehu.
Others are National Security Adviser, Babagana Monguno, Director-General of National Intelligence Agency, Mr Ahmad Rufai, and Personal Assistant on New Media to President Buhari, Bashir Ahmad, among several more persons.
The burial ceremony was aired on several television stations across Nigeria and the large gathering, against government’s order, was seen by all violating the rule.
“Security personnel at the Villa turned back the aides of President Muhammadu Buhari after attending the burial ceremony of Mallam Kyari and coming in contact with several persons against the rule of the NCDC.
“President Buhari is not happy that the aides decided to violate clear protocols and guidelines of the NCDC and he directed that they should keep off the Presidential Villa to undergo self-isolation,” a Presidency official SaharaReporters on Saturday.