Osinbajo seeks more Nigeria, U.S. collaboration to tackle terrorism


Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo says there is need for concerted efforts to effectively tackle the spread of terrorism, especially in the Sahel region.

Osinbajo’s spokesman, Laolu Akande, stated in Abuja on Friday that the vice-president made the assertion when he received the visiting Under Secretary for Political Affairs, U.S. State Department, Victoria Nuland and a U.S. delegation.

The vice-president stressed the need for more collaboration between Nigeria and the U.S.A in combating terrorism generally.

He noted that the spread of terrorist organisations such as ISWAP, and Boko Haram should be tackled firmly and permanently.

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Osinbajo said that Federal Government was committed to tackling the country’s security challenges and ensuring free, fair and peaceful elections.

He commended the U.S. government for providing support to Nigeria in its fight against Boko Haram and terrorism with the delivery of the first batch of Super Tucano jets.

He said the proposed purchase of 12 AH-1Z Cobra attack helicopters by Nigeria was also worthy of note.

“The cooperation between the two countries has been extremely fruitful and rewarding, especially for us.

“So far, we have seen peaceful elections at the primaries… and as we go along, we will get a firmer grip of the security issues; we must thank you for the cooperation of the American government, that we see so far,’’ he said.

The vice president restated the need to designate gas as a transition fuel in the global net-zero emissions target by 2060.

Osinbajo emphasised the importance of climate financing in helping African countries to tackle the effects of climate change and poverty.

“We cannot afford at this point, to defund gas projects in developing countries, especially countries such as ours where we have huge hydrocarbon and gas deposits and made a way for us to transit, and at the same time address poverty and other challenges.

“This is an area I think we can also work jointly and collaboratively in seeking solutions,’’ Osinbajo said.

In her remarks earlier, Nuland acknowledged Nigeria’s advocacy for the use of gas as a transition fuel.

“You are absolutely right about gas.

“I have worked a lot on the response to Russia’s war in Ukraine and the Europeans now understand, as they try to cut their dependence on Moscow that they need alternative democratic sources of gas.

“They are waking up to the fact that Nigeria and other countries can fill that gap needed,’’ she said.

Nuland also commended the vice-president for his role in the country’s economic development and the green transition.

She underscored the important bilateral relations between the U.S. and Nigeria, and said that it was crucial that Nigeria’s democracy continues to prosper and grow.

“I also want to underscore your role in the economic development of the country and the green transition.

“I hope you will give us a sense of the work that you are undertaking now as you strengthen Nigeria’s future obviously through a gas transition to solar and other green superpowers on this continent and beyond.

“We have been talking a lot about the upcoming elections and President Muhammadu Buhari’s very important and courageous decision to facilitate a peaceful transfer of power.

“We have to commend the fact that the government and the president have been sending the message that this needs to be a free and fair election; one that heals and binds the country and one that is safe and secure,” she said.

Nuland added that the U.S. was also very proud of its work with Nigeria in tackling the COVID-19 pandemic.

The U.S. delegation included its Ambassador to Nigeria, Mary Leonard, and the Deputy Assistant Secretary for West African Affairs, Mike Gonzales and Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defence, Archie Barrett.

Issues discussed during the visit included the significance of free, fair and peaceful elections; improvement on security in the Sahel region, and the adoption of gas as transition fuel in developing countries. (NAN)

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