• Seeks more investments in Nigeria
• May pledges support for rescue of abducted schoolgirls
Juliana Taiwo-Obalonye, Abuja
President Muhammadu Buhari yesterday said he was more bothered about the security and economy of the country than the 2019 general elections.
He was speaking yesterday in London during a bilateral meeting with British Prime Minister Theresa May. “We campaigned on three major issues, to secure the country, revive the economy and fight corruption. We have elections next year, politicians are already pre-occupied with the polls, but I am bothered more about security and the economy,” Buhari told May.
Security, the economy and fight against corruption constitute Buhari’s three-prong focus.
The Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina who is on the president’s entourage in London, in a statement, said “the three-pronged focus of the current administration resonated through the conversation, as President Muhammadu Buhari held a bilateral meeting with British Prime Minister, Theresa May on Monday at 10, Downing Street, London.”
Buhari further recalled that Nigeria and Britain have a long history of cooperation on several fronts. He said: “People ought to know how they arrived where they are, if they would move forward. It was a mistake for us to have stopped the teaching of history as a subject in schools, but we are returning it to the curriculum now.”
The President commended British companies like Unilever, Cadbury, and many others, “who have stood with Nigeria through thick and thin. Even when we fought a Civil War, they never left.
“But like Oliver Twist, we ask for more investments. We are encouraging more British companies to come to Nigeria. We appreciate the support you have given in training and equipping our military, particularly in the war against insurgency, but we want to also continue to work with you on trade and investment,” Buhari declared.
Adesina said May was particular about abduction of young schoolgirls by Boko Haram, noting that Britain would continue to give Nigeria the needed assistance. The Prime Minister said the Buhari administration has “been making good progress on the economy,” and urged it to maintain the focus, despite approaching elections, and increase in political activities.
On education and climate change, May said: “Good grounding in education is good. It is important to equip young people for today’s world. It is also a good bastion and defence against modern slavery.
The issue of the environment and climate change is very important, because of its impact on many countries in the Commonwealth. Stability at home is important, to curb illegal migration.”
According to Adesina, May commended Buhari for the much he has been doing on improving trade and business for Nigeria, and noted that it was also time to boost intra-Commonwealth trade.
Buhari also briefed May on the developments in the field of agriculture, stressing that it has put the nation firmly on the road to food self-sufficiency.