By Johnbosco Agbakwuru
PRESIDENT Muhammadu Buhari yesterday while playing host to the Chairman of African Union Commission said that some of the migrants in Libya that were subjected to slavery claimed to be of Nigerian extraction when they are not.
Chairman of the AU Commission Moussa Faki Mahamat met President Buhari at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
Speaking while welcoming his guest, Buhari said good neighbourliness and relationship were important for security and economic development.
He said, “That was why I visited all our neighbours. Such relationship is crucial for security, and economic development, so that our youths can get jobs.”
On the situation in Libya, President Buhari reiterated that not every black man is a Nigerian, adding that it is important to authenticate the origin of the people in distress before they are evacuated.
According to him, “We are trying to bring as many as possible from Libya. But not every Black man is a Nigerian.
Others claim to be Nigerian, when they are not, and because they have destroyed their travel papers, we can’t claim them, except there is proper documentation.”
On recharging of the Lake Chad, which he has been in the vanguard of, across the world, the President submitted: “The earlier we get it done, the better, so that our youths don’t continue to dare the Sahara Desert and the Mediterranean Sea.”
The AU Commission boss congratulated President Buhari for what he is doing for Nigeria, and for Africa.
He said, “Without President Buhari, and without Nigeria, many things would not have been possible. I appreciate the role you played in my election, and all that you do in ECOWAS, Lake Chad Basin Commission, and the entire continent.
Also speaking while meeting with the President of ECOWAS Commission Marcel A. de Souza, at the State House, President Buhari emphasized the need for accountability and good neighbourliness in both the sub-region, and on the African continent.
President Buhari said it was gladdening that the organization was demanding accountability from its headquarters staff, which made it recently invite the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) from Nigeria, to look into its books.
He said, “Thanks for being firm, and for insisting on transparency and accountability at the ECOWAS headquarters,” adding that Nigeria would continue to fulfill its obligations to the sub-regional body.
Nigeria hosts the 52nd Ordinary Session of the ECOWAS Authority of Heads of State and Government today in Abuja.
President Buhari said he expected a formal report on the situation in Guinea Bissau at the meeting, noting: “We need our troops back home, and I hope the President of that country will accept a constitutional way to resolve the situation there.”
The ECOWAS Commission boss thanked Nigeria for agreeing to host the 52nd Ordinary Session at short notice, adding that the impact of Nigeria was quite strong in the organization.
He said, “We are under financial pressure due to terrorist attacks in the sub-region, but Nigeria being out of recession will have an impact on the entire region.”
He noted that Nigeria was the highest contributor of troops to Guinea Bissau, but admitted that “the troops can’t be there endlessly.”