Nigeria intensifies campaign ahead of AU election

Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama

Nigeria has intensified campaign in support of Ms Fatima Mohammed, its candidate for African Union (AU) Commissioner for Peace and Security in an election has been scheduled to hold at the end of January.

A statement by Foreign Affairs Ministry on Thursday in Abuja said that President Muhammadu Buhari had appointed some special envoys to lead delegates to drum support for the Nigeria/ECOWAS candidate.

One of the delegations is led by the Minister of foreign Affairs, Mr. Geoffrey Onyeama, which is currently visiting selected African countries.

He is accompanied by the Permanent Secretary of the ministry, Amb. Sola Enikanolaiye.

It said the delegation, which was in Ethiopia on Monday, was received by the Ethiopian Foreign Minister, Dr Workneh Gebeyehu.

Gebeyehu, the statement said promised to convey President Buhari’s request to the Prime Minister and was optimistic of a favourable response.

They also visited Burundi where they were received by the President Pierre Nkurunziza.

Nkurunziza, according to the statement, indicated that Burundi also has a candidate for the same position, but expressed his readiness to support Nigeria’s candidate if the election goes into the second round.

The president also expressed his admiration for Nigeria and President Buhari’s constructive role in peace, security and development of the African continent.

Prof. Ibrahim Gambari, one-time Nigerian Permanent Representative at the UN had led a delegation to some other countries.

Amb. Baba Gana Kingibe, one-time Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), and Mr Kayode Fayemi, Minister of Mines and Steel Development have just concluded similar visits to some selected African countries.

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