Presidential spokesman, Garba Shehu has reacted to the outrage that followed, after the burial ceremony of President Muhammadu Buhari’s Chief of Staff, Abba Kyari on Saturday which was attended by large number of people, with clear violation of the safety practice and guidelines to prevent the spread of the deadly coronavirus pandemic.
Speaking to newsmen after the event, Shehu stated that they were helpless in the situation, adding that most of those who turned up for the burial were not invited and they could not have brought in soldiers to flog and chase them away, because they were there to pay their last respect to the late Chief of Staff.
He also revealed that the ceremony was delayed in their attempt to maintain social distancing, but had to proceed as more people kept trooping to the cemetery.
“Was there any invitation for the public to come for the burial? Go back to my Twitter handle and read what I posted. From 10am, when we picked up the body at the airport, we sent a message out that the funeral will be private and that the public should please go and pray for Abba Kyari.
“We also said no condolence visits to the President and family. What can we do? Are we going to invite soldiers to flog people who came to pay their last respect to the man?
“We didn’t invite people. We were trying to move people back and observe social distancing and it was delaying the funeral. We just have to do it because people are not ready to leave. What are we going to do?” Presidential aide said.
MERIDIAN SPY reports that Kyari died on April 17 in a private medical facility in Lagos after battling some coronavirus complications. And was laid to rest in Gudu Cemetery, Abuja, in accordance with Islamic funeral rites on April 18.
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