Acting President Yemi Osinbajo, on Wednesday called for a deepening of the long standing relationship between Nigeria and the United States, but says such must be based on mutual trust.
Prof. Osinbajo who received the Commander of the US-Africa Command, General Thomas D. Waldhauser and the American Ambassador in Nigeria, W. Stuart Symington at the Presidential Villa, promised that the Federal Government openness and willingness in that regard for the tremendous benefit of both nations.
While appreciating the support of the U.S over the year, the acting President observed that the relationship has been a very important “for many years, even so now at a time like this for us.”
A statement by Laolu Akande, Senior Special Assistant on Media & Publicity in the Office of the Vice President, also quoted Osinbajo as expressing belief of the Muhammadu Buhari presidency that the U.S is committed to helping Nigeria with some of its challenges, especially in the troubled Northeast.
He explained also that issues around human rights concerns in the country should be viewed in the context of the fact that “the kind of warfare we are engaged with in many ways are unprecedented for our military,” the Ag. President said while noting the sheer brutality and mindlessness of terrorists who are “prepared to kill children in their sleep, abduct girls and prepared to die, even using teenage girls as suicide bombers.”
He stressed the Federal Government readiness to conclusively end the problem “as quickly as possible.”
Osinbajo noted attacks by remnants and splinter groups from the terrorists, and added that nonetheless they can no longer launch military attacks.
0emphasising on the support of the US so far, he stated that the Federal Government will welcome more US military cooperation and also assistance in dealing with the consequent humanitarian situation in the NorthEast.
“The US has been a reliable partner we can trust, especially from what the US has done in the past, we want to see how much more you can do for us and the region,” Prof. Osinbajo stated.
Responding, the head of the US Africa Command, General Waldhauser expressed the readiness of the US government to “accelerate” its contributions, adding that there is a sense that “we want to get on and solve the problem.”
The visit to Nigeria at this time, he continued, is about developing further “the friendship and trust that we have in common,” while also agreeing that the brutality shown by the terrorists is “what we have never seen before.”
Also speaking, Ambassador Symington said he had just concluded a visit to all the geo-political zones of the country, following which he has come to the conclusion that “Nigeria is one of the greatest countries in the world with the potential to change the world.”