Monday, October 2, 2023

Details Of Phone Conversation Between VP Kamala Harris And President Tinubu Emerge

The details of the meeting between the United States Vice President, Kamala Harris, and President Bola Tinubu have emerged.

In a statement released by the presidential spokesman, Dele Alake, President Tinubu spoke with Harris about the strong ties between the Nigerian and American people.

Both leaders also talked about the two nations’ shared work on global and regional issues from defending democracy in West Africa and the Sahel to promoting digital inclusion and economic growth.

The statement also revealed that the United States government also supported the fuel subsidy removal, saying it was a step in reforming the economy.

The US vice president also assured Tinubu of her country’s support in increasing private sector investment, digital inclusion, women’s empowerment, and expanding access to clean energy.

Harris also underscored the US government’s long-standing support for Nigeria’s democracy and good governance, including the government’s responsibility to ensure that security services act to serve the people they are mandated to protect.

She condemned the coup in Niger, adding that the US continued engagement with the unstable West African country is dependent on its commitment to democratic standards.

The US Vice President spoke on the need for Africa, including Nigeria to embrace energy transitions.

In his response, President Tinubu thanked Harris for the telephone call and her words of encouragement on the efforts taken so far on the economy, but added that “the developments in the Niger Republic dampen spirits.”

He said ECOWAS under his watch would do all that is necessary to restore democracy in Niger while counting on the support of the US.

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In Nigeria, President Tinubu craved more private-sector investment, urging the US to lead the way in this regard.

He said: “We had to get rid of the fuel subsidy that is laden with fraud with a few people appropriating the wealth of the country to themselves.

“We would need the US to help push for investments that will help alleviate the effects of subsidy removal in Nigeria. We need foreign direct investment to come in.

“We have abundant gas resources in the country and not being able to fund gas pipelines to Europe and compete in that gas market is a handicap.”

On climate change, the President said Nigeria would stay focused on alternate energy but he pleaded for the developed nations to understand the situation in developing countries including Africa.

The two leaders also spoke about strengthening relations between their two countries and their shared work on global and regional issues.

Other matters that featured in the discussions that lasted about 40 minutes are defending democracy in West Africa and The Sahel and digital inclusion.

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