President Goodluck Jonathan yesterday urged United States President Barack Obama to help to “fix Nigeria.”
“For you to fix the world, you must fix Africa. For you to fix Africa, you must fix Nigeria,” Dr. Jonathan told his American counterpart.
Both leaders met at the Lyndon B. Johnson suite in the Waldorf-Astoria. It was Obama’s first stop in his swing through town for the United Nations General Assembly.
Noting his trip to Africa at the beginning of the summer, Obama said he saw common interests in helping Nigeria improve its rural electrification, empowering young people through the Young African Leaders programme, improving internal security in a way consistent with human rights and “making sure” Nigeria’s elections in 2015 continue to improve the country’s democratic process.
And he said the attack at a Nairobi mall over the weekend “underscores” the level to which all countries are connected and their need to work together.
“We stand with them against this terrible outrage that’s occurred, we will provide them with whatever law enforcement help that is necessary,” Obama said. “The United States will continue to work with the entire continent of Africa and around the world to make sure that we are dismantling these networks of destruction.”
“I feel the pain of President Kenyatta … terror anywhere is terror on all of us,” Jonathan said.
Obama was joined by Secretary of State John Kerry, National Security Adviser Susan Rice, United Nations Ambassador Samantha Power and deputy chief of staff Rob Nabors.
In a statement on the meeting between the two Presidents, Dr. Jonathan’s spokesman Reuben Abati said:
“President Goodluck Jonathan Monday in New York called for a stronger global consensus and determination to end the scourge of terrorism as quickly as possible.
“Speaking at talks with President Barrack Obama of the United States ahead of the opening of the 68th session of the United Nations tomorrow, President Jonathan said that unless the international community unites and deploys its enormous resources to eradicate terrorism, it will continue to be embarrassed by terrorist outrages such as the heinous attack on defenceless shoppers in Nairobi at the weekend which both leaders strongly condemned.
“President Jonathan expressed his appreciation of the support and assistance Nigeria has been receiving from the United States for its fight against domestic terrorism. He added, however, that Nigeria will welcome even more bilateral collaboration in this regard.
“The President said his administration also looked forward to the further strengthening of Nigeria’s relations with the United States in the areas of trade and economic development.
“He reassured President Jonathan of his commitment to the continuous strengthening of Nigeria’s electoral processes and the country’s democratic institutions.
President Jonathan also applauded President Obama’s Power Africa and Youth Leadership Initiatives, saying that both initiatives would complement aspects of his administration’s agenda for national transformation.
“President Obama had while welcoming President Jonathan to their meeting at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in New York, described Nigeria as a critical partner of the United States in Africa.
“He assured President Jonathan that the United States will continue to cooperate with Nigeria in all possible areas, including the war against domestic and global terrorism.
“President Jonathan was accompanied to the talks by the Minister of State (Foreign Affairs) Prof. Viola Onwuliri, Nigeria’s Ambassador to the United States, Prof. Adebowale Adefuye, the Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs. Diezani Allison Madueke, and the Governor of Gombe State, Alhaji Ibrahim Dankwambo.”