By Peter Duru
MAKURDI â€” Governor Gabriel Suswam of Benue State has called for a closer working relationship between Nigeria and South African in order to liberate the continent of Africa from the shackles of neo-colonialism.
Suswam who spoke while playing host to South African High Commissioner to Nigeria who was in the state on a two-day working visit called for the strengthening of the ties between the two countries.
He noted that the continent of Africa was looking up to Nigeria and South Africa to lead the socio-economic revolution that would strengthen the growth and development of the continent.
The Governor urged the South African government to team up with Nigeria to lead the course of uniting African states.
According to him, â€œSouth Africa, with its sophisticated economy, has an edge over Nigeria which can equally boast of its huge population coupled with its massive human and material resources. Hence, both countries can tap into these endowments for the purpose of placing the continent on the pedestal of socio-economic growthâ€.
Suswam identified agricultural and educational sectors as possible areas Benue State would want to collaborate with the Republic of South African to better the lot of the state.
He said: â€œI strongly believe that it will pay us better to partner with your home government to develop our agric sector rather than looking beyond the shores of our continent for collaboration.â€
Earlier in his remark, the South African High Commissioner, Mr. kingsley Mamobolo, said Nigeria and South Africa shared a lot in common especially as it concerns the liberation of the continent.
The High Commissioner said: â€œAs a people, our relationships transcend history and it is for the good of our peoples that this relationship is sustained.
â€œAnd we cannot fail to appreciate the fact that our liberation as a country was largely due to the roles Nigeria and few other countries played to ensure that we became an independent state and we will ever remain grateful for that,â€ he said.