President Muhammadu Buhari will leave Nigeria today for New York
for a series of meetings and interactions with notable world leaders within and on the sidelines of the main events of the 70th Session of the United Nations General Assembly.
The president would be accompanied by the Governors of Sokoto, Kaduna and Niger States, the National Security Adviser, Babagana Mongonu and the Permanent Secretaries in the Federal Ministries of Foreign Affairs, Defence, Finance, Health, Industry, Trade and Investment.
Commenting on the development, a journalist Uche Ezechukwu told elombah.com, “Is it possible that Buhari is incapable of change? When will he start seeing Nigeria beyond a narrow regional vista? He goes off to New York to attend the UN General Assembly, on Thursday, accompanied by three Northern governors, from Sokoto, Kaduna and Niger states. I know some of his most fanatical supporters who are getting very frustrated with the current state of affairs.”
Another commentator Law Mefor also told elombah.com that Buherai needs to broaden his view and added; “Some say the President is free to govern with those he is comfortable with. There should be nothing wrong in moving the capital of Nigeria to Daura, going by the warped logic which stands the nation’s laws on their head. But seriously, in a federal, pluralistic environment such as Nigeria, a President must necessarily spread out his wings. He would have lost nothing taking even one Governor from southern Nigeria. That is what federalism is all about – inclusiveness. If those Governors are going because of development, there are States in the South as poor as many States in the North and they are traveling at federal expense.”
On the agenda of President Buhari’s talks, deliberations and interactions with the United Nations Secretary-General, Mr. Ban Ki Moon, President Barack Obama of the United States, President Francois Hollande of France, Prime Minister David Cameron of Britain, Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany, President Vladmir Putin of Russia, President Xi Jinping of China, Prime Minister Narenda Modi of India and others will be domestic developmental issues, bilateral relations, the war against terrorism, countering violent extremism, the enhancement of global security, peace-keeping operations, climate change and the adoption of a post 2015 global development agenda.
President Buhari who will be accompanied by the Governors of Sokoto, Kaduna and Niger States, the National Security Adviser and the Permanent Secretaries in the Federal Ministries of Foreign Affairs, Defence, Finance, Health, Industry, Trade and Investment, will deliver Nigeria’s Statement to the 70th Session of the United Nations General Assembly on Monday, September 28.
President Buhari is also scheduled to address the World Leaders Summit on Violent Extremism to which he was personally invited by Mr. Ban Ki Moon during the Secretary-General’s recent visit to Nigeria.
Also on the President busy schedule in New York are a meeting of the African Union’s Peace and Security Council, a High-Level Roundtable on South-South Cooperation organised by President Xi Jinping of China and the United Nations, and participation in the launching of an updated global health strategy for women and children.
On President Buhari’s schedule too are meetings with former President Bill Clinton of the United States, Mr. Bill Gates of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation which is assisting Nigeria in several areas including polio eradication, and former Prime Minister Gordon Brown of Britain, the United Nations Special Envoy on Global Education who is one of the main drivers of the Safe Schools Initiative.
The President will concluded his visit to New York on Tuesday, September 29 and leave the city for Abuja on the same day.