As a show of commitment to swapping the abducted schoolgirls from Chibok with Boko Haram fighters in custody, President Muhammadu Buhari has told the United Nations Secretary General, Ban Ki-moon, that Nigeria would welcome intermediaries from the global body.
Speaking during a bilateral meeting with the UN scribe on the sidelines of the 71st UN General Assembly in New York, President Buhari according to a statement by his special adviser media, Femi Adesina, said the Nigerian government was willing to bend over backwards, to get the Chibok girls released from captivity.
“The challenge is in getting credible and bona fide leadership of Boko Haram to discuss with,” the President said, adding that, “The split in the insurgent group is not helping matters. Government had reached out, ready to negotiate, but it became difficult to identify credible leaders. We will welcome intermediaries such as UN outfits, to step in.”
The President reiterated that the teachings of Boko Haram were far from being Islamic, as neither Islam, nor any other religion, advocates hurting the weak and innocent.
“The fact that they kill men, women, children, and other people wantonly, and shout Allahu Akbar (God is great) shows that they do not know that Allah at all. If they did, they would not shed innocent blood,” President Buhari said.
He thanked Ki-moon for the moral and material support given to Nigeria, which has enabled the country surmount many of the challenges facing her.
In his response, the UN Secretary General congratulated President Buhari on the anti-corruption war, declaring: “You are highly respected by world leaders, including myself. Your persona has given your country a positive image.”
He said the UN recognised the achievements of the Buhari administration against Boko Haram, urging that human rights be upheld always, to prevent a repeat of the scenario being witnessed in Syria.
Mr Ki-moon also thanked the Nigerian leader for his commitment to issues on climate change, adding that the government should “own the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs),” for the good of its citizens.
Why We Are Fighting Corruption Headlong – PMB
President Muhammadu Buhari has explained that his administration is fighting the scourge of corruption headlong because it contributes to the denial of the resources required for development.
Speaking in New York at the High-level Meeting of the United Nations General Assembly to commemorate the 30th anniversary of the Declaration on the Right to Development, the president, according to a statement by his special adviser media, Femi Adesina, called on development partners to also up the fight against corruption by returning ill-gotten financial assets and halting future illicit financial flows to their countries.
According to the Nigerian leader, such collective action “will guarantee a stronger international defence of the right to development.”
He further pointed out that illicit financial assets stashed abroad deprive developing countries including Nigeria, and invariably deny people the enjoyment of their national wealth and resources needed for development.
President Buhari cautioned that non-repatriation of illicit financial assets could impinge on the determination of States to achieve an all-inclusive 2030 sustainable development.
He therefore called on the United Nations “to remain vocal and active in
addressing the negative impact of non-repatriation of illicit financial assets on their countries of origin,” adding that “as soon as stolen assets are legally established, they should swiftly be repatriated.”
The President, while welcoming the commemoration of three decades of the Declaration on the Right to Development, which he observed, coincides with the first anniversary of the adoption of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, said “it reminds us all of the essence of development and provides us with the opportunity to reaffirm commitments to converting this right into the policies and operational activities of relevant actors at the national, regional and international levels.”
President Buhari said that as a developing country, Nigeria considers the Right to Development an inalienable right of fundamental importance, stressing that at the national level, his administration has been making strenuous efforts to ensure that the right to development is at the centre of all development initiatives. While reaffirming Nigeria’s commitment to the UN Charter and other international conventions that uphold the Right to Development, he also drew the attention of the international community to the urgent need to address the lop-sided terms of trade between developed and developing countries which have impacted negatively on the capacity of many developing countries to embark on development programmes for the benefit of their peoples.
“Nigeria is convinced that the Right to Development is a shared responsibility considering the growing inequality and poverty resulting from climate change impact, natural disasters, violent extremism, social unrest and deprivation,” the president said.
“The Right to Development must be promoted and protected like all other rights. Its universality and interdependence are indisputable,” he declared.