The special adviser to President Muhammadu Buhari on media and publicity, Mr. Femi Adesina, has said the decision of PUNCH newspaper to refer to the president as a “major general” is proof of press freedom.
Punch in an editorial entitled “Buhari’s lawlessness: Our stand”, on Wednesday, said it will also refer to the Buhari administration as a regime until it purges itself of ”contempt for the rule of law”.
Adesina in his respond said Buhari earned the rank, adding that all over the world retired military personnel are now “democrats”.
“A newspaper says it will henceforth address President Muhammadu Buhari by his military rank of Major General.
“Nothing untoward in it. It is a rank the President attained by dint of hard work before he retired from the Nigerian Army. And today, constitutionally, he is also Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces.
“All over the world, just as in our country, a large number of retired military officers are now democrats. It does not make those who did not pass through military service better than them.
“Rather than being pejorative, addressing President Buhari by his military rank is another testimony to free speech and freedom of the press, which this administration (or regime, if anyone prefers: it is a matter of semantics) has pledged to uphold and preserve.”