COVID-19: Technical fault disrupts Buhari’s speech at UN virtual event

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President @MBuhari participating in the United Nations High-Level Virtual Event on Financing for Development in the era of COVID-19 and Beyond on Thursday, May 28, 2020. Photo: Presidency
President @MBuhari participating in the United Nations High-Level Virtual Event on Financing for Development in the era of COVID-19 and Beyond on Thursday, May 28, 2020. Photo: Presidency
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By John Ameh, Abuja

The President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), abruptly lost connection on Thursday while addressing a United Nations event.

The virtual meeting tagged “High-Level Event on Financing for Development in the Era of COVID-19 and Beyond”, was at the instance of the United Nations Secretary-General, António Guterres.

Canadian Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, and his Jamaican counterpart, Andrew Holness, co-hosted the high-level discussions, with over 50 world leaders participating.

Buhari’s connection from Abuja had hitches right from the start, as he went on and off for seconds before the video connection went off completely,

President @MBuhari participating in the United Nations High-Level Virtual Event on Financing for Development in the era of COVID-19 and Beyond on Thursday, May 28, 2020. Photo: Presidency
President @MBuhari participating in the United Nations High-Level Virtual Event on Financing for Development in the era of COVID-19 and Beyond on Thursday, May 28, 2020. Photo: Presidency

The organisers quickly called on the Prime Minister of Thailand, Prayut Chan-o-cha, to make his own presentation.

Chan-o-cha too seemed to have connection issues, but he substituted his presentation with a pre-recorded video speech.

A number of connections from other leaders also had brief hitches.

Before his connection went off, Buhari had highlighted the impact of COVID -19 on African countries, particularly their loss of revenues, making it difficult for them to fund their 2020 budget.

President @MBuhari participating in the United Nations High-Level Virtual Event on Financing for Development in the era of COVID-19 and Beyond on Thursday, May 28, 2020. Photo: Presidency
President @MBuhari participating in the United Nations High-Level Virtual Event on Financing for Development in the era of COVID-19 and Beyond on Thursday, May 28, 2020. Photo: Presidency

For Nigeria, he said it was hard-hit by the crash in oil revenue, the mainstay of its monolithic economy.

However, Buhari informed his co-participants that his regime had introduced measures, including retooling the economy through “home-grown strategies” to ensure that Nigeria survived the pandemic now and beyond.

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