LAGOS (Reuters) – Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari said on Monday he was traveling to Britain to see his doctor in a surprise announcement that could renew concern about whether he is well enough to run for a second term at an election next year.
Buhari spent five months in Britain last year for treatment for an unspecified illness, an absence that prompted many to question his fitness to run a country that is Africa’s top oil producer and one of its biggest economies.
Buhari, 75, was military ruler between 1983 and 1985 and returned to power after winning an election in 2015. In April, he said he would seek a second and final term.
“I will be traveling to the United Kingdom tomorrow, to see my doctor, at his request. Will be away for four days; back in Abuja on Saturday, May 12,” he said on Twitter.
His spokesman said Buhari met his doctor last week in London on his way back from Washington.
“The doctor requested the president to return for a meeting which he agreed to do,” said the spokesman, Garba Shehu, in a statement.
Buhari took two months medical leave starting last January and a break from May to August.
Reporting by Alexis Akwagyiram; Editing by Matthew Mpoke Bigg