After weeks of speculation over his health, Nigerian President Umaru Yar’Adua has broken his silence saying he’s ‘hopeful of a return soon’.
He’s says he’s recovering, the people aren’t as confident. So when do you decide when a leader’s time is up?
Heba’s post from last month is below:
When an ailing, old(ish) head of state goes abroad to seek treatment for a health condition, people start to question who is in charge.
That’s what’s happening right now in Nigeria as President Umaru Yar’Adua is being treated in a Saudi hospital for an acute heart condition. It’s prompted some in the country to call for his resignation in order to make way for a healthier, and perhaps more effective, leader.
Nigeria isn’t the only country to be making calls for a change of leadership on this basis. It’s also a problem all over the world.
Egyptian President, Hosni Mubarak has been dogged by rumours of ill health for years. In 2007, Cairo’s streets and cafes were abuzz with rumours that he had died. An obituary was even published in a major national paper, wiping millions of dollars off a jittery Egyptian stock exchange.
Should leaders have a clean bill of health in order to do their job? If they don’t, should they step aside? Should politicians even disclose they have a health problem?