President Muhammadu Buhari yesterday assured US President Barack Obama that Nigeria is making steady progress towards resolving the problem in the Niger Delta region which has led to economic sabotage on a grand scale.
President Buhari stated this during a bilateral meeting on the sidelines of the 71st edition of the UN General Assembly, holding in New York, USA.
President Buhari said: “We are making definite progress on how many factions of the militant groups exist, their leadership and operational basis, and we have equally sought the cooperation of the oil majors. In a short while, I believe the issues would be resolved.”
According to a statement by his special adviser on media, Femi Adesina, the president thanked America for the help it rendered to Nigeria in the area of security through the provision of armaments, training for Nigerian troops, and sharing of intelligence, which have led to the degradation of Boko Haram in the North East.
President Buhari further solicited support from the international community to contain the humanitarian crisis currently ravaging the region.
The president noted that the farming season would be good this year, with the prospect of good harvest, and that Nigeria is on the road to food self-sufficiency soon.
“We shall be able to feed ourselves, and utilise the billions of dollars spent on importing food on other productive areas,” he stated.
He reiterated that his administration came to power on the tripod promises of security, battle against corruption, and revamping the economy, stressing that there would be no let-up in fulfilling those electoral promises.
The president wished President Obama a happy retirement, as he winds down gradually on his tenure in office.
In his response, Obama described President Buhari as a man of “integrity and honesty,” saying: “We have confidence in your leadership. There are some difficulties you face, but this administration is willing to assist in the short time we have left. You have made real progress in defeating the brutal organisation called Boko Haram, and that was achieved because of your leadership.”
President Obama offered a hand of fellowship to Nigeria “in the final and comprehensive defeat of Boko Haram, resolution of the Niger Delta crisis, which would help ramp up oil production and increase revenue, resolving the humanitarian crisis in the North East, recovering stolen money, and revamping the economy.”