President Bola Tinubu has received the support of US Vice President Kamala Harris and UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres. In separate phone calls with Tinubu on Thursday, these foreign leaders praised Nigeria’s efforts to restore democratic order in the Republic of Niger.
In a statement issued by the Nigerian President’s spokesman, Dele Alake, on Friday, two leaders praised the Nigerian President, who is also the Chairman of the ECOWAS Authority of Heads of State and Government, for championing the peace efforts.
After a successful new revolution in Niger on Wednesday night, some military officials deposed President Mohammed Bazoum.
President Tinubu promptly dismissed the threat to democracy in that country and sent a large delegation to meet with all parties to restore constitutional order in Niger.
“In her telephone conversation with President Tinubu, at the request of US authorities, Harris praised the Federal Government’s reform initiatives, urging the country to continue in that direction,” Alake added.
“While pledging to support democracy in Africa, including the West African sub-region, Harris also stated that the US would help Nigeria fight terrorism.”
“The US Vice President spoke about the need for Africa, including Nigeria, to embrace energy transitions.”
President Tinubu thanked Harris for the phone conversation and her words of encouragement on the economy’s progress thus far, but said that “the developments in the Niger Republic dampen spirits.”
He emphasized that ECOWAS, under his leadership, would do all possible to restore democracy in Niger, while counting on US backing.
In Nigeria, the President urged the US to lead the way in terms of private-sector investment.
“We had to get rid of the fuel subsidy, which is laden with fraud, with a few people appropriating the wealth of the country to themselves,” Tinubu stated.
“We would need the US to help push for investments that will help Nigeria cope with the effects of subsidy removal. We require foreign direct investment.
“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 remain focused on alternative energy, but he pleaded for developed nations to understand the situation in developing countries, including Africa,” the statement continued.
“The two leaders also discussed strengthening bilateral relations and their shared work on global and regional issues.”
“Other topics covered in the roughly 40-minute discussions included defending democracy in West Africa and The Sahel, as well as digital inclusion.”
While speaking with UN Secretary-General António Guterres, Tinubu stated that he was doing all necessary to resolve the Niger crisis.
While expressing hope that the situation in Niger may be improved, he stated that ECOWAS will require UN assistance in restoring democracy and developing institutions in that nation.
Meanwhile, Guterres had already committed the UN’s support for Tinubu’s peace efforts in Niger.