Nigeria’s President Buhari negative as CoS Abba Kyari tests positive for coronavirus

Kyari and Buhari (File photo)

Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari has tested negative for coronavirus, as news broke out that his closest aide and Chief of Staff, Abba Kyari, tested positive for coronavirus.

Abba Kyari, already in his 70s, is known to the Nigerian public to be a very influential figure in President Buhari’s government.

Consequently, it is being speculated that his illness could have take a toll on the running of the country.

Kyari, according to information, has a history of medical complications, including diabetes, but he is a popular gatekeeper to the president.

Earlier, President Buhari at the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting, ordered that every cabinet ministers and others seeking consultations with him must go through Kyari, including Nigeria’s top politicians and businessmen.

Kyari had been described as the “lynchpin” of the Buhari government by Matthew Page, an associate fellow with the Africa Programme at Chatham House.

“This has the potential to further slow down decision making within top tiers of Nigerian government,” he said.

Kyari traveled to Germany in early March with a delegation of other Nigerian officials for meetings with Siemens AG. It is unclear if he self-isolated upon his return to Nigeria.

A presidency spokesman did not comment on whether Buhari, has been tested. The president, who is aged 77, has undisclosed medical ailments and spent five months in London for treatments in 2017.

As of Monday, Nigeria had 40 confirmed cases, two of whom had recovered, and one death – a 67-year-old former oil official. It was unclear if Kyari’s diagnosis was included in that total.