By Dirisu Yakubu, with agency report

Abuja—THE Presidency has said the award given to President Muhammadu Buhari by the family of Martin Luther King, late American human rights activist, is a “commemorative plaque”.

President Muhammadu Buhari receives a plague from Ambassador Erika Bennett and other members of African-American Human Activist Late Martin Luther Jnr during the conferment of The First Black History Month National Black Excellence and Exceptional African Leadership Award 2018 at the Council Chambers in Abuja.


Abike Dabiri-Erewa, Senior Special Assistant, SSA, to the President on Foreign Affairs and Diaspora, said the award was not given on behalf of The King Center.

On Tuesday, pictures of the president being presented the award surfaced on social media.

The award was given to him by Naomi Barbara King, a matriarch of the King family.

The Peoples Democratic Party, PDP scoffed at the award, describing it as a national disgrace and embarrassment.

Reacting, Dabiri-Erewa, yesterday said the award was given by Naomi in a  personal capacity and not on behalf of The King Centre.

Speaking through a statement by Abdulrahman Balogun, her spokesman, Dabiri-Erewa said Naomi gave the plaque to Buhari in recognition of his fight against corruption, saying “The members, led by the matriarch of MLK, Naomi Barbara King, were in Nigeria as part of the activities initiated to celebrate a low- key Black History Month in Nigeria as part of deepening partnership between Africa and its Diaspora.

“As part of the activities, they visited President Muhammadu Buhari and gave him a commemorative plaque for his fight against corruption.”

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