By Willie Bassey
Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Senator George Akume, CON, has sought to deepen bilateral relations with British Government, particularly, in the area of security, agriculture and infrastructural development.
SGF made the disclosure when he received in audience the British High Commissioner to Nigeria, Richard Montgomery, when the later paid him a courtesy visit in his office.
He recalled the age-long colonial relationship between UK and Nigeria, and said that it has become necessary that both countries work together for the mutual benefits of both countries.
In his words: “We want to make a difference in the lives of our people. We are not after money, we are after infrastructure, we are after food security, and we are after energy. We believe with your support we should go further than this. We also have 9 nine mandate areas. Honestly, by the time you support us, its mutual, you will be surprise that the relationship will soar to greater heights”.
Having congratulated the British High Commissioner to Nigeria on his new posting, he called on the British Government to assist the Federal Government to curb Boko Haram insurgency, banditry and farmers-herders clashes as they did during Nigeria’s civil war.
Senator Akume also said that with the historical ties the British Government and the Federal Government, he emphasised the need to deepen bilateral relationship to support Nigeria also in the area of education, provision of education, health, amongst others.
Speaking earlier, the British High Commissioner to Nigeria, Richard Montgomery congratulated the Secretary to the Government of the Federation on his appointment by President Bola Ahmed Tinubu. He also commended the present administration for taking bold reforms in repositioning the economy, which has placed the country on a pedestal of sustainable economic growth.
He said that the essence of their visit was to get acquainted with the key priority areas of the Federal Government so as to enable the UK government tailor its supports in line with its needs.
He noted that the UK Government, through the Foreign Commonwealth Development Office and Partnership to Engage Reform and Learn (FCDO-PERL), will continue to collaborate with Nigeria with the ongoing programmes- the CDCU (Central Delivery Coordination Unit), Ministerial Retreat as well as the Community of Practice to Secretaries to the State Governments in the country.
He pledged to consolidate on the gains of the existing bilateral relations and make further inroads into other areas in order to promote and stabilise Nigeria’s democracy.
Views exclusive rights: Willie Bassey, Director, Information, June 22, 2023.