The President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), on Friday in Daura, his hometown, said he fled home to join the Nigerian Army amidst growing pressure for him to get married.
Highlighting the years of battle during the Nigerian Civil War and some personal challenges, Buhari said he secured his first job early after school to manage a co-operative in Daura, but had to escape to join the army when his family pressured him into marriage.
According to a statement signed by the President’s Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, Buhari revealed this when he visited the Emir of Daura, Faruk Faruk, after unveiling two roads.
The statement is titled ‘God has been kind to me; I survived many battles – President Buhari.’
It read in part, “President Buhari said that he secured his first job early after school to manage a co-operative in Daura, but had to escape and join the army when there was pressure that he should get married.”
The President was quoted as saying, “I told Governor Aminu Masari the story of how I left Daura to join the army. That was how God planned it. We make choices in life, but eventually destiny is before God.
“I was at the war front during the civil war, and saw how many died. Some fell right beside me. God kept me.
Many bridges were blown just before we arrived at some places, and after we crossed. I arrived at some places to see bodies of my own colleagues that we were fighting together. I am alive today only by God’s grace.”
He also said being the chief executive of a diverse country such as Nigeria must have been by the grace of God.
“This opportunity to serve the nation comes from God. All over the world, Nigeria is known for its diversity, with different religions and cultures.
“We are also known because we have a huge population of millions of people. For the President of Nigeria, at this time, to come from Daura is the grace and mercy of God,” Buhari said.
Again, he assured the emirate that he would return and settle in Daura after handing over on May 29, 2023.
The President thanked the monarch for his various recognitions and titles given to his close aides and family members.
“I am grateful for all the support,” he stated.
Reminiscing a bomb attack on the President who was then the All Progressives Congress flagbearer in 2014, the Emir of Daura described Buhari’s survival as “a divine act,” which happened shortly before he won elections in 2015.
He said “As a state, Katsina benefitted a lot from your position, Mr President and the Daura community remains grateful for all. For a long time, we will be talking about the blessings of God in our domain.”
Faruk also lauded Governor Masari whom, he said, did his best for the people within the resources available to the administration.
“Governor Masari is not a thief. The governor has done his best with available resources. He has showcased his record of service by inviting the President to witness progress in the state.
“The President has seen a lot in two days, but he has not seen all. We know the good works of the governor and really commend him,” Faruk noted.
Buhari’s visit to the Emir concludes his two-day state visit where he commissioned projects including the Musawa General Hospital, Government Day Secondary School, Musawa, Gora-Makauraci-Malamawa road, Sandamu-Baure-Babban Mutum road and the Gurjiya -Sandamu-Karkarku roads in Daura.