President Bola Ahmed Tinubu says war with Niger Republic is not ideal for his economic reforms in Nigeria but defending democracy is important.
Recall that the political crisis in Niger began on July 26 when a faction of the country’s military toppled the democratically-elected President Mohamed Bazoum.
Tinubu disclosed this on Saturday during a meeting with Molly Phee, the United States(US) presidential envoy and Assistant Secretary of State for African affairs.
Speaking to the US envoy, Tinubu said although he is holding ECOWAS from military intervention in Niger Republic, “We are deep in our attempts to peacefully settle the issue in Niger by leveraging on our diplomatic tools. I continue to hold ECOWAS back, despite its readiness for all options, in order to exhaust all other remedial mechanisms.”
“War is not ideal for my economic reforms, nor for the region, but the defence of democracy is sacrosanct. The ECOWAS consensus is that we will not allow anyone to insincerely buy time.
“Yes, the private sector will lead the way within an enabling environment we create for them, but the U.S. Government must be innovative in its thinking and systematically create incentives for U.S. industrial investment in Nigeria. Under my leadership, Nigeria stands ready to address its specific regulatory, tax and environmental concerns. I am determined to create prosperity for all Nigerian families,” Tinubu was quoted as saying by Ajuri Ngelale, Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity
The envoy further extended an invitation from President Joe Biden to Tinubu for a meeting on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly in New York in September to “advance discussions.”
“We know there is more we can do to incentivize large-scale American investment in Nigeria and we are committed to working closely with you to achieve that, as part of efforts to strengthen the Nigerian economy and the regional economy.
“We appreciate your willingness to create an enabling environment for that. President Joe Biden is asking to meet with you on the sidelines of UNGA and you are the only African leader he has requested to meet. It is a mark of his high regard for your leadership,” the US envoy said.