Wednesday, June 26, 2013

President Obama Set To Visit Africa, Nigeria Excluded Once Again

President Obama will once again not visit Nigeria during his upcoming three-nation trip to Africa. The reason  for the exclusion according to the US government is because of Nigeria's ongoing insecurities.

This is Obama’s second visit to the continent and he is scheduled to visit Senegal, Tanzania and South Africa for a forum on trade & investment, democratic institution-building, young people and enhancing  economic growth.

American Deputy National Security Advisor, Ben Rhodes, made this clarifications at a briefing on Tuesday and made available press release to the to journalists in Abuja by the Information Office of the Public Affairs Section of the US Embassy. Read it below;

“With respect to Nigeria, we certainly believe that Nigeria is a fundamentally important country to the future of Africa. We’ve put a lot of investment in the relationship with Nigeria through their leadership of ECOWAS, through the significant US business investment in Nigeria and through our security cooperation. 

“Obviously, Nigeria is working through some very challenging security issues right now. And in that process, they’re going to be a partner of the United States. We certainly believe we’ll have an opportunity to further engage the Nigerian government through bilateral meetings going forward. But at this point, we just were not able to make it to Nigeria on this particular itinerary. 

I will say that we purposefully designed the itineraries to be able to reach West Africa, South Africa and East Africa and in West Africa, to visit Senegal, a French-speaking, Muslim-majority democracy that is an important partner of the United States and also provides a platform for the President to speak to the broader region. 

We are also looking at ways, at the President’s town hall in South Africa with young African leaders, to draw in through technology young people in Nigeria and in Kenya, among other places, so that the President is using this trip to speak to the broader African audience. We recognize we’d like to go to as many countries as possible.

Source: PUNCH

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