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Published On: Fri, Sep 27th, 2019

Buhari solicits Portugal’s support on security, stolen crude

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By Lawrence Olaoye

President Muhammadu Buhari has solicited support from the authorities in Portugal to in the areas of insecurity in the Gulf of Guinea and oil theft in Nigeria.
According to a statement made available to newsmen by bus spokesman, Femi Adesina, the President made the plea yesterday in New York, at the sidelines of the 74th UN General Assembly when be met with President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa of Portugal.
Buhari also explained why Nigeria was investing heavily on infrastructural development.
“We are a large country, with vast population and poor infrastructure. But we need people to come and invest, that’s why we are focusing on roads, rail, power, airports, and many others. Without infrastructure, investment would be slow,” the President said.
He thanked Portugal for the “steadfast support” it has given Nigeria on many fronts, adding that “concern about global issues is genetic for Portugal.”
Buhari said the Sahel was awash with illegal small arms, exacerbating the security situation in the North-east of Nigeria, but added that government was doing a lot to bring things under control.
On security in the Gulf of Guinea, he solicited for the support of Portugal, saying most of the stolen crude oil from Nigeria and other countries pass through the region.
Buhari said in the second term of his administration, “we will consolidate on what we started in the first term, so that I can thereafter retire in peace and comfort.”
President de Sousa commended what he called “the excellent relations” between his country and Nigeria, noting: “We have Portuguese companies in Nigeria; we share the same opinion on international issues; we share your worries; follow closely what is happening in the Sahel, and we support you in fighting terrorism.”
Portugal hosts Euro-African Forum next year, and President de Sousa invited President Buhari to declare the event open in Lisbon, “even if it’s for half a day.”
He said it would be a great honour to have the Nigerian leader in Portugal, “and we have been waiting for you to visit for three years. Many African leaders have come, but we want Nigeria.”

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