Washington (United States) (AFP) | 15 April 2018 21:21
“President Trump looks forward to discussing ways to enhance our strategic partnership and advance our shared priorities: promoting economic growth and reforms, fighting terrorism and other threats to peace and security, and building on Nigeria’s role as a democratic leader in the region,” the White House said in a statement.
“The relationship of the United States with Nigeria is deep and strong, and Nigeria’s economic growth, security, and leadership in Africa will advance our mutual prosperity.”
Nigeria, West Africa’s largest economy, is among the countries combatting Islamist extremism with help from the United States.
The nation is battling an array of security threats across its territory, from Boko Haram jihadists in the northeast to oil militants in the south.
The announcement of the visit comes one day after the fourth anniversary of the Chibok schoolgirls abduction, which saw Boko Haram kidnap 276 girls.
The Nigerian president’s White House visit also follows a scandal that erupted in January when Trump allegedly branded African nations “shithole countries.”
The reported remark triggered global outrage and forced the US president to pen a letter reaffirming his commitment to the continent.
Nigeria was among the countries included on Trump’s ex-secretary of state Rex Tillerson’s Africa tour last month — though the former Texas oilman truncated the trip just before the US president brutally sacked him.
Before returning to Washington, Tillerson had notably promised Nigeria’s support ranging from equipment to intelligence to helping secure the swift release of kidnapped schoolgirls.
© 2018 AFP