Nigerians finally get to see their president with a face mask since the coronavirus pandemic started. Muhammadu Buhari has never been sighted with a mask through his official engagements back home.
But that changed when he arrived in the Malian capital Bamako where he was captured for the first time in a medical mask when he arrived at the airport.
Buhari – who was undertaking his first overseas trip in about five months, has held several cabinet meetings and met a raft of dignitaries for months but he has always been without a mask.
He one of few African leaders who have not been pictured wearing one. Others include Burundi’s Evariste Ndayishimiye and Tanzania’s John Magufuli.
On arrival in Bamako, the Nigerian leader was received by the Malian Prime Minister Boubou Cisse after which he met with embattled president Ibrahim Boubacar Keita – whose political struggles has elicited an mediation from the regional ECOWAS bloc.
Two other African leaders arrived before Buhari, Ivory Coast’s Alassane Ouattara was first to land in Bamako before Senegal’s Macky Sall.
After Buhari, Niger’s Mahamadou Issoufou – president of ECOWAS, and Ghana’a Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo are also expected to form the presidential mediation team expected to meet with major political stakeholders in the country.