Buhari commends UN for showing genuine interest in Nigeria’s challenges
President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday commended the United Nations for showing genuine interest in addressing the problems facing Nigeria.
The president made the commendation at a joint press briefing with the UN Secretary General, Mr Ban Ki-Moon, after a closed-door meeting in the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
“On behalf of the Federal Government, I will like to most sincerely thank the Secretary General for his depth appreciation to Nigeria’s problems.
“It shows genuine interest in the humanitarian approach to our problems which he very correctly and eloquently described in terms of security, economic and how international community and the United Nations in particular, which he represents, intends to help us to solve these problems.
“We have discussed with him the difficult time Nigeria finds itself; the destruction of infrastructure, especially in the North East, the rehabilitation of the infrastructure and over 1.5 million internally displaced persons that have to be morally, physically and materially rehabilitated and the efforts we think the UN Secretary General can convey to the United Nations so that Nigeria can be helped in the identified problems we have.’’
The president thanked the UN Scribe for acknowledging Nigeria’s efforts in terms of stabilizing the African continent, especially its neighbouring countries and the Central African region.
He also thanked the UN scribe for inviting him to attend the UN general assembly meeting, slated for Sept. 27 and 28 in New York, U.S.A., to discuss global security and economic issues.
“I very sincerely, on behalf of the Federal Government of Nigeria, thank the Secretary General for his visit and for identifying with us our problems and for appreciating what efforts Nigeria was able to do in terms of stabilizing the region and the neighboring region in the Central African area where they have crisis.
“I thank the Secretary General and I wish him the best of luck in the balance of his tour to Nigeria.’’
In his remarks, Ban Ki-Moon said he discussed with President Buhari a full range of issues covering development, human rights, peace and security, including the cause of troubling levels of violence and terror perpetuated by Boko Haram in the North East.
He reassured that the UN would continue to support and assist Nigeria in its ongoing war against terrorism and insurgency.
“I expressed my solidarity again with the Nigerian people. So that the UN will work together to address and counter extremism and terrorism.”
While commending the people of Nigeria on the peaceful, free and fair elections, Ban Ki-Moon saluted the statesmanship of example of both president Buhari and for President Goodluck Jonathan.
He said that for the first time in Nigerian history, a sitting president peacefully ceded power to an opposition candidate in a democratic election.
“I hope that this example will be emulated by many countries around the world and this message of hope that could be spread to far and wide around the world.
“Mr President, I am here at your moment of complex challenges but also time of promise and hope.
“I want to commend the people of Nigeria on the peaceful, free and fair elections. I salute the statesmanship of example of both President Buhari and for President Goodluck Jonathan.
“For the first time in Nigerian history, a sitting president peacefully ceded power to an opposition candidate in a democratic election.
“The elections sent a strong global message of respect for democracy and the rule of law.’’
He further commended President Buhari for prioritising insecurity, anti-corruption and unemployment issues, saying that the UN would support his efforts to advance hope, peace, sustainable development and human rights in a comprehensive way.
“I’m convinced that when you change Nigeria, you will also change Africa,’’ the UN Scribe told President Buhari.
According to him, Nigeria has been a source of stability in West Africa and the wider continent, noting that the country has been a key contributor to UN peacekeeping operations, including successful missions in Liberia and Sierra Leone.
He said: “Nigeria is once again playing a crucial role in the UN Security Council over which Amb. Joy Ogwu is now presiding this month as President of the Security Council.’’