The President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), on Friday, marked his 79th birthday in Istanbul, Turkey.
Photos shared by presidential aide, Buhari Sallau, showed the moment the President cut his birthday cake moulded in the national colours, green-white-green.
The cake was presented as a surprise to him by Nigerian delegates who chanted “Happy Birthday, Mr President,” on sighting him.
The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyema, who spoke on behalf of the delegation and the Ambassador of Nigeria to Turkey, Ismail Yusuf Abba, congratulated the President on the good work he is doing for the country and wished him a happy birthday, many healthy years ahead and the energy to give his best to the nation.
Onyeama noted in particular that the President continues to have a good run with his health, getting better and more active with time.
Shortly after cutting the cake, Buhari went straight to chair a planning meeting with officials in his delegation and thereafter drove to the Dolmabahce Palace for a meeting with his Turkish counterpart, Tayyip Recep Erdogan.
Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, disclosed this in a statement titled ‘Here Is How President Buhari Marked His 79th Birthday In Turkey.’
According to Shehu, “In response to the tribute on the occasion on behalf of the ministers and the rest of the delegation rendered by the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama, President Buhari said he will put in his best for Nigeria until the last day when in 2023 he hands over to a successor and returns to his farm to tender crops and livestock.
Shehu quoted the President as saying, “I thought that being away from Abuja I will escape these things. The Guards Brigade had written to tell me what they wanted to do on this day. Now here you are doing this far away from home.
“I look forward to the year 2023 when I finish, to go home to take charge of my farm. Between now and that time, I will do the best that is possible to advance the interest of the nation and its people, and carry out my duties as prescribed by the Constitution.”
Buhari is in Istanbul to participate in the Turkey-Africa Partnership Summit. He’s expected back in Nigeria on Sunday.