Buhari cancels Rwanda trip, reconsiders signing African trade agreement

Buhari in Berlin
President Muhammadu Buhari

President Muhammadu Buhari has cancelled his trip to Kigali, Rwanda scheduled for Monday.

Mr. Buhari was expected to attend an Extraordinary Summit of the African Union (AU) on Tuesday, March 21, to sign the framework agreement for establishing the African Continental Free Trade Area.

The agreement is expected to allow free trade among all countries that sign.

While the Federal Executive Council (FEC) recently approved Nigeria’s participation and signing of the agreement, the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) had strongly warned against the move. The country’s highest labour body said the decision may affect the nation’s manufacturing sector and lead to loss of jobs.

The MInistry of Foreign Affairs in a statement in Sunday signed by its spokesperson, Tope Elias-Fatile, said Mr. Buhari cancelled the trip in order “to allow more time for input from Nigerian stakeholders”.

Sources at the presidency said the the first advanced team of the president had already travelled to Kigali on Friday but had now been asked to return home.


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