Buhari and Trump: a chance to reset Nigeria's relationship with the US
Explained in other words, President Trump should not be expected to negotiate away any US interest, implying that Nigeria has been boxed to the corner before negotiations even begin. Tillerson made a tour of some African countries with the ultimate objective of helping to build a new and better image for Donald Trump in Africa. His visit to Nigeria was the last in the series.
It was quite brief as Tillerson had to rush back home to be sacked as Secretary of State. Why was his sack immediately following his visit to Nigeria? True, Donald Trump had, before then, told all Americans, particularly his close collaborators, not to abuse or condemn Russia on any matter.
Tillerson was on record to have breached this directive. Was this the factor that explains his sack? Was there anything Tillerson did during his short stay in Nigeria that infuriated Donald Trump? Before the advent of the two leaders, the relationship was fairly warm in attitudinal disposition and deep in scope of areas of cooperation.
Beyond that, the relationship has been that of crises and conflicts.US-Nigeria relations
Why would Muhammadu Buhari be invited to Washington only to be told not to contest? Why should it be the responsibility of Donald Trump to encourage Buhari to contest? However, is US interference preventable if the issue of democracy comes up? Is it preventable when the questions of corruption and Chibok or Dapchi girls are raised?
- U.S.-Nigeria Relations and the 2016 American Elections
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Is it preventable in light of the allegation by former Minister of Defence, Lt-General Theophilus Danjuma, an allegation of ethnic cleansing by the Nigerian military, and his advice that Nigerians now owe it a responsibility to defend themselves? We must resist it. We must stop it. Everyone of us rise up. They collude with the bandits to kill people, kill Nigerians. The armed forces guide their movements; they cover them.
If you are depending on the Armed Forces to stop the killings, you will all die one by one. The important implication of the observation is that it has been raised by a Nigerian with credibility and integrity, an altruist and patriot, Theophilus Danjuma, and not by a foreigner.
This is an allegation that may not be separated from that of General Danjuma. Both allegations are issues any US president would want to be interested in. Fourth, there is the issue of alleged support of Donald trump for the proponents of a sovereign state of Biafra.
On which side is the United States in matters of national unity, national restructuring? Without doubt, Buhari is more experienced as a statesman and president, having been a military head of state and also an elected president.
Muhammadu Buhari and Donald Trump in Nigeria-US Relations: A Prolegomena to their April 30 Meeting
However, Buhari cannot be said to have the exposure of the president of a superpower with all the attendant political intrigues involved in it. President Buhari will need to factor into his discussions the physiognomic factors. In many developed democracies, physiognomy is taken seriously.
In Nigeria, it is not a big deal most unfortunately. Fifthly, one of the foreign policy objectives of Nigeria is the respect for international treaties and other agreements. This is consistent with the principle of sanctity of agreements or pacta sunt servanda.
Nigeria–United States relations
What the United States is basically interested in is consolidation of democratic values, regional peace and security, conducive business environment, and, of course, a Nigeria that will not become a challenge to US foreign policy interests in international relations. In other words, the goodness in, and development of, the bilateral ties must not be to the extent of enabling Nigeria to be strong enough to be able to effectively challenge the directives or positions of the United States in inter-state relations.
Yet, by the end of the s it had completely collapsed. Not only did we become a country compelled to move most of our people and freight by road, generations of our young people also ended up missing out on what it means to travel around their country by train. In fact, very few major infrastructure projects were completed in Nigeria in the years leading to my inauguration as president, a period during which the country enjoyed its highest crude oil prices in recent history.
The grand corruption of our recent past, that saw tens of billions of dollars frittered away on fraudulent oil deals and bogus military contracts, put paid to all opportunities for an infrastructure revolution.
Now we have seized the chance to do things better. We have cleaned up falsified civil service payrolls and commenced the prosecution of payroll impostors—saving taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars annually.
Nigeria–United States relations - Wikipedia
We set up a whistleblower policy aimed at deterring corrupt practices in government, and committed to the Open Government Partnership. A lot of work still lies ahead, of course.
We need to build on the gains we have made in fighting terrorism in the Northeast, and in attaining peace in the Niger Delta region. Climate change, amplified by our rapidly growing population, is another challenge we are facing head-on. The depletion of grazing land and water, arising from intensifying desertification, is triggering often fatal tensions between crop farming communities and nomadic cattle farmers.
To cite one example, Lake Chad, the marine mainstay of Northeastern Nigeria and the landlocked countries of Chad and Niger, has shrunk by more than 80 percent over the last five decades. We are working hard to resolve these challenges—through improved law enforcement, peace-building efforts, and necessary reforms in the management of our land and water resources.
Last December, Nigeria became the first African country to issue a Sovereign Domestic Green Bond, to raise financing for clean energy infrastructure.
Our commitment to restoring Nigeria to the path of growth and development is not in doubt. Muhammadu Buhari is the President of Nigeria.