VIDEO: Sanusi Weeps, Narrates How Sick Child Died In Mother’s Arms Over $5

 

The Emir of Kano, Muhammadu Sanusi II, shed tears on Thursday as he decries the alarming rate of inequalities in the country.

According to him, the inequalities in society have caused so much hardship with the poor paying the ultimate sacrifice.

The traditional ruler made the submission as he gave an emotional address at a United Nations meeting to reach Sustainable Development Goals in Lagos.

He sobbed as narrated an unfortunate situation where a mother could not save her sick child, despite being close to getting help.

The traditional ruler weeps as he decries the rate of poverty in the country.

 

 

Sanusi told the gathering at the event that on that fateful day, the woman had walked to the palace from a children’s hospital located just about 200 metres.

According to him, he heard a very loud scream and asked someone to check what happened while the person who came back with tears in his eyes.

The emir said the baby died in the mother’s arms while she was waiting for her turn to ask for money to buy the drug to save her child.

“And how much was this? It was less than five dollars,” an emotional Sanusi said.

He added, “This is what happens every day in this country. Children die because their parents cannot afford five dollars, that a mother will watch her child die because she does not have five dollars.”

Senate Vows To Tackle Unemployment, Poverty, Other Challenges

President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, speaks during plenary in the Senate Chamber in Abuja on September 27, 2019.

 

 

The Senate has resolved to tackle youth unemployment, poverty, and reform of the educational sector, among other challenges facing the country.

The lawmakers made the resolution on Thursday in the Red Chamber following the adoption of the Legislative Agenda for the Ninth Senate.

They vowed to channel their energy towards strengthening Basic and Technical Education by enhancing oversight on the Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC), to ensure the implementation of the provisions of the Act.

In his remarks, President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, pledged that the upper chamber of the National Assembly would work to reduce the number of out-of-school children across the country.

“Today, the education sector suffers a lot,” he was quoted as saying in a statement by his Special Assistant on Press, Ezrel Tabiowo.

The Senate President added, “The 11 million or 12 million children out of school – we owe them that responsibility to do something about them, and that is taking us back to the implementation of the Basic Education Act.

“How do we ensure that we reduce and eliminate the number of out-of-school children on our street? Whatever name we have to give that programme, we have to do something and government has to take responsibility.”

Senate President Lawan also noted that the government, at the federal and state levels, would have to create some funds to employ and train more teachers.

He gave assurance that the lawmakers, on their part, would work assiduously to implement its legislative agenda.

The Senate President said, “This legislative agenda is particularly ours. We represent the people, we know their feelings, and we imagine that the legislative perspectives we have here may be slightly different from the executive perspective.

“But at the same time, we are going to serve the same people, and that is where the need for us to come together and to reconcile our thinking on taking Nigeria to the next level will be.”

Buhari Calls For Action Against Xenophobia, Abject Poverty At UNGA (Full Speech)

President Muhammadu Buhari gives his speech at 74th Session of the UN General Assembly in New York, the United States on September 24, 2019.

 

 

President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday addressed world leaders at the 74th Session of the United Nations General Assembly.

In his address, the President called for strong action against xenophobia, racism, and abject poverty.

He also expressed concern about climate change which forced thousands to protest across the world, as well as terrorism and other forms of threat to life.

President Buhari gave his address after his counterparts in Brazil, the United States, Egypt, and Turkey, mounted the podium.

READ ALSO: President Buhari Addresses World Leaders At UN General Assembly

Read the President’s full speech at the meeting below:

 

Firstly, I wish to thank the General Assembly for the honour bestowed on the Government and people of Nigeria by electing our national, His Excellency, Tijjani Muhammad-Bande @BandeTijjani to the Presidency of the 74th Session of this august body.

This is indeed a great honour to our country! Nigerians are truly grateful and shall endeavour to live up to the expectations and responsibilities thrust upon us.

Ambassador Muhammad-Bande is an experienced and seasoned diplomat and I am confident that he will prove to the International Community his suitability for this most demanding assignment.

Let me also offer my sincere thanks to the outgoing President, Her Excellency Maria Fernanda Espinosa Garces, for her skill, resourcefulness and endless reservoir of patience in piloting the 73rd General Assembly.

In the same vein, may I commend the Secretary General, His Excellency @antonioguterres, for his tremendous energy, his genuine international outlook exhibited by his leadership of the United Nations.

Your Excellencies, Delegates,

The theme of the current General Assembly is: “Galvanising multilateral efforts for poverty eradication, quality education, climate action and inclusion.”

These are the prime areas calling for collective action which will benefit national and global interests.

Today, the world is at a critical juncture. This year marks the first anniversary of the International Day of Multilateralism and Diplomacy for Peace.

This year also marks the 100 years of the founding of the League of Nations, leading eventually to the establishment of the United Nations as part of the post-World War II international order.

Article 1(4) of the UN Charter called for “harmonising the actions of nations in the attainment of common ends”. These common ends include:

  1. International peace & security;
  2. Prosperity & social justice;
  3. Respect for human dignity; &
  4. Protection of the environment.

 

Multilateralism symbolised by the UN system, has brought immense benefits to the people of the world. It has saved lives, prevented wars, restored peace and stability as well as generated economic and social progress in many countries.

Mr President, Your Excellencies,

We must admit that as the world grows richer, there are regrettable signals in the World Economic and Political Order. Millions in Africa and around the world remain in abject poverty.

Furthermore, we are witnessing a backlash against multilateralism in the shape of rising tide of racism, xenophobia, resurgent nationalism, populism and tendencies towards protectionism and unilateralism. The pristine principles of the United Nations appear threatened.

On cessation of hostilities after World War II,the United States in one of the greatest selfless undertakings in history, decided to revive Europe through the Marshall Plan & uplift and restore Japan economically. This generous policy catalysed a great economic revival globally.

This action of the United States not only benefitted Europe and Japan but the United States as well through vastly improved trade and cross investments.

The United States and Europe have become friends and allies since the end of the war. The United States and Japan have also become friends and allies. This example can be replicated with respect to Africa.

A developed Africa will not be antagonistic to industrialised countries but will become friends and partners in prosperity, security and development.

A prosperous Africa will mean greater prosperity for the rest of the world. A poor Africa will be a drag on the rest of the world. Is this what the international community wants?

A coordinated multilateral effort should be set in motion to utilise and maximise the use of the enormous resources on the African continent for the benefit of all nations. Investing partners will be able to recoup their investments manifold over time.

Current attempts to help develop Africa by industrial countries are un-coordinated and plainly incremental. We have the skills, the manpower and the natural resources, but in many instances, we lack the capital – hence my plea for industrial countries to take a long-term view of Africa. We request you to come and partner with us to develop the continent for the benefit of all.

Africa charges you with the singular task of initiating the effort we are calling for. The United Nations has in place processes for promoting collective action to combat global threats. No threat is more potent than poverty and exclusion.

They are the foul source from which common criminality, insurgency, cross border crimes, human trafficking and its terrible consequences draw their inspiration.

Poverty in all its manifestations, remains one of the greatest challenges facing our world. Its eradication is an indispensable requirement for achieving sustainable development.

In this regard, Nigeria has developed a National Social Investment Programme @NSIP_NG – a pro-poor scheme that targets the poorest and most vulnerable households in the country.

Under this initiative easy, access to financial services are facilitated to our traders, artisans, market women and co-operative societies. This type of initiative can help lessen and eventually eliminate mass poverty in Africa.

At the core of our efforts to build an inclusive society, our programmes are focused on youth and women empowerment. These programmes aim at ensuring women and youth participation in governance, industry, climate action and agriculture.

 

On the international scene, Mr President, the United Nations has new opportunities to take the lead on issues that continue to cloud the prospects for international peace and prosperity, namely;

  1. The rights of the Palestinian people to have their own country free of occupation. The international community has spoken from Resolution 242 of 1967 to the present day on the rights of the Palestinian people to have and live in peace in their own land;
  2. The risks associated with nuclear proliferation;
  3. Unfair and unjust trading practices notwithstanding the World Trade Organisation Rules and Precepts;
  4. The looming danger of climate change

 

On climate change Nigeria stands resolutely with the international community in observing agreed carbon emission targets which I signed in 2015.

We have since issued two sovereign Green Bonds and have added an additional 1 million hectares of forested land taking our total forest coverage to 6.7% through collective national effort.

As we advocate & strive for inclusion within our societies, we must also ensure inclusion prevails in our collective action as members of International Community. That is why we support the expansion of the Security Council to reflect the diversity & dynamics of the 21st Century.

 

Mr President, Your Excellencies,

From Asia to the Middle East, Africa to South America, violence and the threat of conflict continue to blight the lives of too many people.

Our own country is no exception. Nigeria is a nation of nearly 200 million people of diverse groups.

Our diversity is our source of strength which is why in the elections this year, our people backed the politics of tolerance, inclusion and community over the politics of protest and division.

Our election promises emphasised political stability, freedom and prosperity, tackling poverty, schooling our young and providing them with the tools to build better lives. We are placing special emphasis on the role of women in our female gender advancement programmes.

Our progress and delivery are deliberate, purposeful and measured. We clearly appreciate there are no quick fixes to complex challenges.

In particular, the challenge of education in Africa is enormous. On December 3rd 2018, the General Assembly adopted Resolution 73/25 that proclaimed 24 January of every year as International Day of Education.

The Resolution which was spearheaded by Nigeria and co-sponsored by 58 other member states marked a watershed in the recognition of the fundamental role of education in building modern societies.

To ensure access to education for all, our Government has introduced the Home Grown Feeding Programme @NHGSFP to address the challenge of out-of-school and forced-out-of-school children.

This social intervention programme, Mr President, is aimed at encouraging increased school enrolment through provision of free school meals. The benefits extend beyond the school environment.

In addition, we have introduced mainstreaming and implementation of Safe Schools Declaration laws and policies across all educational institutions in Nigeria.

Mr President, Your Excellencies,

The world was shocked and startled by the massacre in New Zealand by a lone gunman taking the lives of 50 worshippers.

This and similar crimes which have been fuelled by social media networks risk seeping into the fabric of an emerging digital culture.

Major tech companies must be alive to their responsibilities. They cannot be allowed to continue to facilitate the spread of religious, racist, xenophobic and false messages capable of inciting whole communities against each other, leading to loss of many lives.

This could tear some countries apart.

Organised criminal networks, often acting with impunity across international borders present new challenges where only collective action can deliver genuine results.

This is true in the battle against violent extremism, against trafficking in people and drugs and against corruption and money laundering.

The present Nigerian government is facing the challenges of corruption head-on. We are giving notice to international criminal groups by the vigorous prosecution of the P&ID scam attempting to cheat Nigeria of billions of dollars.

Mr President, Your Excellencies,

As a young man, as a soldier, I witnessed at first hand the terrible legacy of destruction and broken lives that conflict leaves in its wake.

As the 75th Anniversary of the end of the Second World War approaches, I wish to pay tribute to the sacrifices made by so many millions across the globe in defence of freedom, tolerance and the rule of law.

In Nigeria, we have made significant strides to put our own house in order. We will work tirelessly to uphold due process. The rule of law remains the permanent, unchanging foundation of the world order.

Freedom, tolerance and the rule of law are universal values and underline the best that this General Assembly represents. And that binds us all.

Mr. President,

I will conclude my remarks by reaffirming Nigeria’s commitment to promoting international peace and security and sustainable development.

We are also committed to strengthening partnerships and cooperation with international and regional organisations for the benefit of humanity.

I thank you.

Education, The Way To Overcome Poverty – Buhari

The President Needs To Rejig His Kitchen Cabinet – Oyebode
A file photo of President Muhammadu Buhari.

 

 

The President believes quality education is very important to the development of every nation, as it is the way people can be lifted out of poverty.

President Muhammadu Buhari stated this on Thursday while commissioning the Post Graduate Centre of Excellence built by the Central Bank of Nigeria at the Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, in Kaduna State.

“Let me reiterate here that this administration places much premium on education at all levels, as it is the bedrock of society’s progress, and the way to overcome poverty,” he was quoted as saying in a statement by his media adviser, Mr Femi Adesina.

The President was worried about the state of facilities in Nigerian universities, due to long years of perennial funding challenges.

He, however, promised that his administration would continue to place a premium on education at all levels.

According to President Buhari, the state of facilities in the universities and other institutions of higher learning has not kept pace with the requirements of the ever-growing population of students and other stakeholders, as well as with modern methods of learning.

He stressed that his administration was committed and determined to continue to fund vital institutions, even in the face of limited financial resources.

The President assured Nigerians that his administration would not rest until it delivers on its commitments on quality education, including investing more resources in the sector and providing a conducive learning environment in academia.

He also expressed confidence that efforts at improving access to quality education in tertiary institutions would enable young Nigerians to make meaningful contributions towards the nation’s development.

President Buhari said, “The wealth of nations today is being shaped by investment in education rather than emphasis on mineral resources.

“Investment in education is a critical factor in driving innovation, technological advancements and employment opportunities in advanced economies.”

The President disclosed that the Federal Government has invested close to N1.3 trillion towards the development of the education sector in the past four years, excluding funds spent on overhead and personnel costs.

Commending the CBN for providing the centre, sited at the Samaru campus of the institution, the he said, “By this exercise, we are building on the vision of the founder of this great institution, Late and great Sir Ahmadu Bello, the Sardauna of Sokoto, who, as Premier of Northern Nigeria, established this institution almost six decades ago.”

“It is on record that this University has made giant contributions towards the development of our nation and we remain grateful to the Founder of this vision,” President Buhari added.

I Plan To Lift 80 million Nigerians Out Of Poverty If I’m Elected President – Ezekwesili

 

The presidential candidate of the Allied Congress Party of Nigeria (ACPN), Obiageli Ezekwesili, says if she’s elected into office, her administration plans to lift at least 80 million Nigerians out of poverty.

“Our plan is to lift at least 80 million Nigerians out of poverty,” she said during the NEDG/BON presidential debate on Saturday.

The ACPN candidate intends to do that by first improving the productivity of the majority of Nigerians which she says will enable them to pull themselves out of poverty.

She said, “The way that we plan to do this is that when you look at the Nigerians who are poor, it is very clear that they are poor because they earn below 700 Naira a day and live on it.

“What, therefore, needs to happen is that this majority of Nigerians, over 50% of them would need to improve their productivity.

“When people have higher productivity, they earn more. When they earn more, they lift themselves out of poverty”.

Read Also: We Must Disrupt Our Pattern Of Politics Or Continue To Fail – Ezekwesili

Ezekwesili further stated that she would remove the barriers that stand in the way of operators in the services sector, as about 60 % of the economy constitutes services.

“The structure of our economy is such that services constitute 60 % of it.

“The services are not high-end services, they are low productivity services and so our focus would be on removing the barriers that stand in the way of operators in the services sector.

“That would include improvement in policies that target the people in those sectors, removing regulatory barriers that stand in the way of formalization and prioritizing the investments that give public utility,” she said.

Other candidates present at the debate were Mr Fela Durotoye of the Alliance for New Democracy (ANN) and Kingsley Moghalu of the Young Progressives Party (YPP).

The candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), President Muhammadu Buhari, and that of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar, were, however, absent.

How I Will Lift Nigerians Out Of Poverty – Ezekwesili

 

A presidential candidate Obiageli Ezekwesili says she plans to lift a large proportion of Nigerians currently in extreme poverty out of that category by focusing on the development of critical infrastructure in the country.

Dr Ezekwesili who is running for president in the 2019 elections on the platform of the Allied Congress Party of Nigeria (ACPN) disclosed this to Channels Television in an exclusive interview.

“So, major for us will be (developing) those critical infrastructures; those skills and training that we need, relevant access to education,” she said during the latest edition of Roadmap 2019 which airs later on Monday.


READ ALSO
I Will Provide Affordable, Uninterrupted Electricity If Elected President – Ezekwesili
Why FG Is Uplifting Poor Nigerians Through SIPs – Osinbajo


How I Will Lift Nigerians Out Of Poverty – Ezekwesili
ACPN presidential candidate Obiageli Ezekwesili speaks during an interview on Roadmap 2019.

The ACPN candidate explained further that her administration would provide the enabling environment that would make it easier for a petty trader to look beyond informality and imagine that she could have structure around what she does.

She stressed the need for the government to construct good roads that would enable the people have access to the market, especially in the rural areas if it must lift the people out of poverty.

The former minister said, “You want to develop a people, or you want to take a people out of poverty; give them roads. The roads connect them to the market.”

“I’m not talking about just urban roads, I’m talking about making sure that our rural communities are integrated into the markets because that is going to be the basis of improving income.”

“When people’s income improves either because you move them from being unemployed to have jobs, or you move them from one low-level of income to a high-level of income, you take them out of poverty,’ she added.

Please join us by 9:00pm today on Roadmap 2019 only on Channels Television for the full interview with Dr Ezekwesili.

Nearly Half The World Lives On Less Than $5.50 A Day – World Bank

 

 

Despite progress in reducing extreme poverty, nearly half the world’s population lives on less than $5.50 a day, with a rising share of the poor in wealthier economies, the World Bank said on Wednesday.

In a twice-yearly report, the bank took a broader look at poverty to see where countries were lagging, even though the share of those living in extreme poverty defined as earning less than $1.90 a day has continued to come down in recent years.

Under the expanded criteria for poverty, the report found the number of poor worldwide was still “unacceptably high,” while the fruits of economic growth were “shared unevenly across regions and countries.”

Even though the global growth of recent years had been sluggish, the total count of people in poverty declined by more than 68 million people between 2013 and 2015 — “a number roughly equivalent to the population of Thailand or the United Kingdom.”

Despite the improvement, the report said current trends indicated the WorldBank’s goal of reducing extreme poverty to less than three percent of the world’s population by 2030 may be unattainable.

“Particularly distressing findings are that extreme poverty is becoming entrenched in a handful of countries and that the pace of poverty reduction will soon decelerate significantly,” the report said.

At the $5.50-a-day threshold, global poverty fell to 46 percent from 67 percent between 1990 and 2015. The bank reported last month that extreme poverty had fallen to 10 percent in 2015.

With China’s rise, East Asia and the Pacific saw a 60 point drop in the poverty rate to 35 percent, but the region is unlikely to continue to achieve that pace going forward as growth has moderated.

And poverty is becoming entrenched in Sub-Saharan Africa, where 84.5 percent of the population still live on less than $5.50 a day, the report said.

And while two decades ago, 60 percent of the global population lived in low-income countries, by 2015, that had fallen to nine percent.

The World Bank also cautioned that in many of those countries, the poor were not sharing equally in economic growth.

AFP

Poverty Is Nigeria’s Biggest Challenge – Kwankwaso

Poverty Is Nigeria's Biggest Challenge – Kwankwaso

 

Former Governor of Kano State, Rabiu Kwankwaso, says poverty remains the biggest challenge Nigeria faces because of the Federal Government’s inability to check leakages.

He said this on Tuesday during a visit to Abia State Governor, Ifeanyi Ikpeazu, at the Government House in Umuahia, the state capital.

Kwankwaso who is a presidential aspirant of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the 2019 general elections, added that the opportunity given to the All Progressives Congress (APC) to lead the nation has not been handled properly.

“We were thinking that Peoples Democratic Party is bad but now, we realise it is better than the All Progressive Congress,” he said.

“This is because the opportunity given to them to govern is not being handled well, we worked assiduously in 2014-2015 for APC but now, we are seeing the difference.

“The leaders lack the capacity to do certain things, that is why the country is facing insecurity and unemployment.

“Poverty is the biggest challenge in the country so we must ensure the leadership checks the leakages,” he said.

Read Also: 2019 Elections: Ex-Kano Governor Kwankwaso Declares For Presidency

Kwankwaso also stated that the issue of restructuring must be tackled in order to ensure justice and equity.

Nigeria’s Poverty Level Is Increasing, Says Peter Obi

 

Former Governor of Anambra State, Peter Obi, has decried the increasing rate of poverty in the country.

 

He said this during his appearance on Channels Television’s breakfast programme, Sunrise Daily.

“Poverty is increasing, children out of school have moved from 10 million to about 12 million,”  Mr Obi said on Wednesday.

He accused the All Progressives Congress (APC) led Federal Government of continuously borrowing money rather than fixing the economy to enable the rich and poor fit in comfortably.

The former governor claimed, “You are borrowing money and the issues that it is supposed to affect are not coming down. In 2017 unemployment moved from 14.8 per cent a high rate which means more people have lost their jobs; the economy is shrinking.”

 

He stated that Nigeria’s debt level has increased, stressing that the entire capital vote for the year was borrowed, including the previous debt which the country has been living on.

According to the former governor, state governments are in distress as a result of the debt level of the nation.

He said this was meant to be a major concern for the Federal Government.

Mr Obi also decried the increasing rate of illiteracy in the country, purporting that the case is severe in the North East.

He said, “In a state in the North, the number of children that sat for the West African Examination Council (WAEC) is 128; a state that is about five million people”.

Northern Governors Meet In Kaduna Over Security, Poverty, Others

The northern governors from nineteen states are meeting in Kaduna to discuss issues affecting the region.

These issues include security challenges, poverty, economy, educational development amongst others.

The governors on Thursday arrived at the Government House in Kaduna, the venue for the meeting.

Present at the meeting are the governors of Borno, Kaduna, Kogi, Sokoto, Bauchi, Katsina and Deputy Governors of Benue, Kwara, and Kaduna.

Submission and deliberation of the interim report on restructuring, lingering farmers and herdsmen clash in several parts of the country.

Also, the recent abduction of the schoolgirls from Dapchi, in Yobe State.

Putin Vows To Halve Poverty In Russia Ahead Of Election

Russian President Vladimir Putin addresses the Federal Assembly at Moscow’s Manezh exhibition centre on March 01, 2018.
Yuri KADOBNOV / AFP

 

Russian President Vladimir Putin said he aims to cut his country’s “unacceptable” poverty rate in half over the next six years, in a state of the nation address on Thursday. 

“(We should) at least halve the poverty rate in the next six years,” Putin said, adding that 20 million Russians currently live below the poverty line compared to 42 million in 2000.

The Russian leader used to the address to outline policy for a widely anticipated new six-year term in the Kremlin following March 18 presidential elections.

Putin, who has led the country for the last 18 years, focused on domestic issues in the speech, saying that the coming years will be “decisive” for Russia.

“The well-being of Russia and the well-being of our citizens must be the foundation of everything, and it is in this area that we must make a breakthrough,” Putin said.

He called for a technological push to improve Russia’s living standards and economy.

“Lagging behind in technology is the main threat and our main enemy,” Putin said.

“To move forward and dynamically develop, we need to expand liberties in all spheres,” he added.

AFP

Buhari Says Africa Urgently Needs A Single Market To Fight Poverty

Buhari Says Africa Urgently Needs A Single Market To Fight Poverty
File photo: President Buhari speaks at AU summit in Ethiopia

 

President Muhammadu Buhari has called for the speedy establishment of a single-unified market in Africa to increase trade, create more jobs, and reduce poverty on the continent.

The President made the call on Monday while addressing African leaders at the 30th Ordinary Session of the Assembly of Heads of State and Government in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

He was briefing the leaders on Nigeria’s position in favour of the report on the establishment of a Continental Free Trade Area (CFTA) and related issues presented by President Mahamadou Issoufou of Niger Republic.

“It is Nigeria’s position that as African leaders and principal architects of our union, we must now speed up action to conclude the negotiations and establish the CFTA,” President Buhari said in a statement issued by his Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Mr Garba Shehu.

Noting that the continent has missed the timeline set by the African Union (AU) in January 2012 to establish the CFTA in 2017, he was optimistic that African leaders still had the opportunity to set it up by March 2018.

“In a rapidly changing global economy, with much uncertainty, we believe that the establishment of a CFTA would provide Africa with tremendous opportunity to achieve significant growth driven by intra-African trade,” the President said in justifying Nigeria’s vote for the CFTA.

According to him, while the stakes in setting up CFTA are no doubt very high, the benefits are wide-ranging and significant.

“The primary objective is economic namely, for trade in goods and services on the continent”, President Buhari said.

“A single, unified market would lead to a comprehensive and mutually beneficial trade agreement amongst African Union Member States. If we integrate Africa’s market for trade in goods and services, we will not only double intra-African trade, but also negotiate with other regions or continents on trade matters,” he added.

The President further argued that if Africa increases its trade, the people would grow faster, create more jobs, and reduce poverty.

He reiterated that Africa would be more integrated, united and prosperous with the CFTA.

“CFTA will carry significant welfare gains associated with increased production, consumption and revenue. It will generate more economic growth, enhance efficiency and support enterprise and innovation,” said President Buhari.

He then urged his colleagues at the summit to also look beyond the economic benefits of the CFTA, stressing that it would “be another step in uniting Africa and consolidating the architecture of the African Union.”

In his words, the Nigerian leader stated: “The establishment of the CFTA is also the first step for the African Union in the implementation of “Agenda 2063” for the socio-economic transformation of the continent, as well as being a building block in the achievement of the goals of the 1991 Abuja Treaty on the African Economic Community.”

He further commended President Issoufou on his role as the “AU Champion for the CFTA”.

President Buhari described his Nigerien counterpart as a leader whose work “has significantly advanced our goal to conclude and launch the CFTA.”

He also commended the technical support provided by the AU Commission, with Nigeria serving as the Chair of the Negotiating Forum and Chairperson of the AU Ministers of Trade.

Considering the huge benefits of the CFTA, the President said Nigeria welcomed the idea and called on AU Member States to lend their strategic support without delay.