President Buhari pledges a deeper with Russia ties as Amaechi seals railway deal
President Muhammadu Buhari, yesterday pledged that the existing ties between Nigeria and Russia would be strengthened for mutuality in a humane, inclusive and better development.
Speaking at the second plenary of the Russia-Africa Summit in Sochi where over 40 leaders are participating, urging that the “initial ambience enjoyed with the former Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) after Nigeria’s independence in 1960 should be revitalised so that the citizens of both countries can benefit from the socio-cultural, educational, technological and trade exchange.”
The summit is being co-chaired by President Vladimir Putin of Russia and African Union Chairman/President of the Arab Republic of Egypt, Abdel Fattah El-Sisi.
Buhari stated: “Nigeria’s relations with Russia just like the rest of Africa began during the Soviet era when diplomatic ties were first established in 1960. That relationship covered areas such as education, healthcare, solid minerals development and military assistance especially during Nigeria’s civil war.
“More recently, our partnership has extended to the oil and gas sector as well as military and technical assistance in support of our fight against the Boko Haram insurgency. At this point, I would once again like to thank President Putin for his support, especially in the area of security.
“It is my hope that through this forum, Russia and Africa will revitalise their time-tested relationship by exploring new opportunities for the collective benefit of our people.”
He recalled that the collapse of the USSR in 1991 affected relations between Russia and African nations, admitting that the former Soviet Union had been a key partner of Africa.