The Vice-President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, has endorsed the establishment an endowment fund for the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) group.
He described the initiative as timely to put members on the path of sustainable growth and development.
The vice-president spoke in Abuja on Wednesday when he received an ACP delegation, comprising its Chairman, Amb. Amadou Diop, the Secretary General, Dr Patrick Gomes, among others.
“Setting up of an endowment fund like the one proposed will, in a way, guarantee an independent ACP.
“Because if our development partners continue to give us the kind of support that they are giving now, they will definitely want to determine our course of development in the future,’’ he said.
The vice-president pledged Nigeria’s unalloyed support for ACP, especially in its agenda on climate change and others, and urged member-nations to remain united in pursuit of the organisation’s objectives.
“Nigeria remains firmly in support of the ACP because we have benefited so much from the organisation.
“But I also want to emphasise the need for us to stay together.
“The ACP has the potential to achieve a lot, especially in the focal areas of climate change, security and economic emancipation,’’ he said.
Osinbajo, however, emphasised the need for the group to review existing international regulations as it strove to address challenges of terrorism and armed conflicts within ACP member-nations.
He commended the leadership of ACP for the work done so far and promised to convey the group’s message to President Muhammadu Buhari.
In separate remarks, Gomes and Diop commended the role played by Nigeria in advancing the cause of ACP on the African continent and the world.
They solicited Nigeria’s support in the actualisation of ACP objectives, especially in the establishment of the fund.
“The key of Africa and the region is Nigeria hence the respect accorded the country by the ACP,’’ Gomes said.
The vice-president also received Mohamed Al Oraby, a special envoy of Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi on a courtesy visit to the Presidential Villa.
The envoy who delivered a special letter from the Egyptian president, sought Nigeria’s support for Egypt’s candidate, Ms Moushira Khattab, in the November 2017 election for the Director-General of UNESCO.