President Muhammadu Buhari has given insight into what he would discuss with his American counterpart during his four-day visit to the U.S. next week.
In a statement through his spokesperson, Femi Adesina, on Wednesday, Mr. Buhari said his talks with Mr. Obama would centre on security, war against terrorism, as well as trade and economic relations.
Mr. Buhari will depart Abuja Sunday for Washington DC and would during his visit “hold high-level talks with President Barack Obama and other senior officials of the United States government”.
According to Mr. Adesina, “topmost on the agenda of President Buhari’s talks with President Obama and United States Government officials will be measures to strengthen and intensify bilateral and international cooperation against terrorism in Nigeria and West-Africa”.
President Buhari will arrive on Sunday and would meet with President Obama at the White House on Monday, July 20.
The Nigerian president “will later hold further discussions with the Chairman of the United States Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Martin Dempsey and the Deputy Secretary of Defence, Robert Work on military and defence cooperation”.
Mr. Adesina’s statement added, “The President will also meet with Vice President Joe Biden and confer with the US Attorney-General, Loretta Lynch, the US Secretary of Treasury, Jack Lew, the US Secretary of Commerce, Penny Pritzker and the US Trade representative, Michael Froman on United States support for his administration’s war against corruption as well as fresh measures to boost Nigeria-United States trade relations.
“The President, who will be received by the United States Secretary of State at the State Department in Washington DC, will later hold meetings with the United States Senate and Congressional Committees on Foreign Relations, as well as the Black Caucus of the United States House of Representatives.
“Before leaving Washington DC, President Buhari will address the United States Chamber of Commerce and Corporate Council for Africa.
“The President, who will be accompanied by the Governors of Imo, Nasarawa, Edo, Borno and Oyo States as well as the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria and Permanent Secretaries of the Federal Ministries of Defence, Foreign Affairs, Industry, Trade and Investment, will also host an interactive session with Nigerians in the American Diaspora.
“The US trip will also afford President Buhari the opportunity of a reunion with members of the American War College Class of 1980 in which he was a distinguished participant.
“He is due back in Abuja on Thursday, July 23.”
President Obama had on June 25 announced his plan to host President Buhari at the White House on July 20.
A statement from the White House on June 25 had said the visit would underscore the United States’ “longstanding friendship with Nigeria, our commitment to strengthening and expanding our partnership with Nigeria’s new government, and our support for the Nigerian people following their historic democratic elections and peaceful transfer of power”.
It also said President Obama looked forward to discussing with President Buhari the two countries’ many shared priorities, including U.S.-Nigeria cooperation to advance a holistic, regional approach to combating Boko Haram, as well as Nigeria’s efforts to advance important economic and political reforms that will help unlock its full potential as a regional and global leader”.
“In addition to hosting President Buhari at the White House, the United States will welcome President Buhari’s senior advisors for consultations with U.S. counterparts and other events aimed at building on the strong U.S.-Nigeria relationship,” the statement had added.