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The Presidency on Sunday described those who speculated that President Muhammadu Buhari may be hospitalised during his private visit to London, thereby extending the visit as ‘apostles of evil imaginings.’

It said such people should swallow their words and retract their ‘tendentious stories.’

The President’s Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Mr. Femi Adesina, expressed the Presidency’s position in a statement in Abuja on Sunday as the President Buhari returned to the country from his London trip.

Adesina attacked some online publications and others for speculating that the President would not return as scheduled saying they should “apologize to millions of Nigerians both at home and in the Diaspora that they have fed with hogwash.”

He said: “President Muhammadu Buhari Sunday returned to Abuja, after a 10-day private visit to the UK.

“Some reckless online media, irresponsible political opposition, and other bilious groups and individuals, had gone on overdrive since the President left the country on April 25, insinuating that he was going for hospitalization, and would not return after 10 days as stated.

“In their vain imaginations, they even stated that fictive doctors have advised President Buhari to stay longer for more intensive care.

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“Now that the President has returned, can these apostles of evil imaginings swallow their words? Can they retract their tendentious stories as well as press statements, and apologize to millions of Nigerians both at home and in the Diaspora that they have fed with hogwash?

“Few days after the celebration of World Press Freedom Day, we daresay that this valuable freedom does not tantamount to liberty to mislead and hoodwink the populace through concocted and jejune publications.”

Adesina however, restated the Buhari administration’s commitment to respecting and upholding press freedom.

“The Buhari administration will always respect and uphold press freedom, but the onus lies on those prone to passing off fiction as facts, to remember that freedom demands concomitant responsibility.

“Those who further share and disseminate falsehood are also encouraged to embrace responsible conduct,” he said.