President Bola Ahmed Tinubu has again re-emphasized the need to strengthen relationships with neighbouring countries while stating that Africa remains the centerpiece of Nigeria’s economic and diplomatic policy.
Tinubu, according to Premium Times, said this while receiving the President of the Benin Republic, Patrice Talon on Saturday after the New Global Financing Pact summit in Paris, France.
Mr Tinubu stated that bilateral relations with African countries, particularly at the sub-regional level, will be strengthened for mutual benefits in the areas of security, health, energy, education, and diplomacy.
The Nigerian president said African leaders must work together for systematic recovery and growth.
Mr Tinubu compared Nigeria’s connections with Benin to Siamese twins who are linked at the hip and supported by other friendly countries.
“We are ready to improve relations. Africa has been the centrepiece of Nigeria’s foreign policy,” he said.
“I believe in Africa. We have the necessity to grow the continent. The world’s economy is wobbling, and Africa has been left behind. On risk factors, Africa is always placed high, with higher interest rates on borrowing. We are always classified as high-risk. We must work together for systematic recovery and growth,” he said.
He added that, “We must recognise the fact that we need each other. We are in a loop, and no one should separate us,” he stated, assuring that his administration will always be open and accessible to all neighbouring countries.
“I just appointed someone who will work with you as Comptroller General of Customs, Adewale Bashir Adeniyi, and he will be available for our common interest,” the president stated.
In his part, Mr Talon said he was inspired with renewed hope for the sub-region and Africa by Mr Tinubu’s inauguration in Abuja, and vowed to support trade and security policy, particularly at the border between the two countries.
We are prepared to work with you, Your Excellency, in implementing policies that will protect our economies at land and sea entries. Whatever is forbidden in Nigeria will also be forbidden in Benin,” president Talon said.
Nigeria’s President Bola Ahmed Tinubu is among many world leaders attended the New Global Financing Pact summit in Paris, France.
Several multilateral development banks including the World Bank, Africa Development Bank, European Union, African Union and the United Nations were also present.