Aidoghie Paulinus Abuja
The United Kingdom has intensified efforts to boost its security and defence partnership with Nigeria.
The move is aimed at assisting Nigeria combat insurgency and humanitarian crisis in the North East.
The effort followed the UK-Nigeria Security and Defence Partnership signed during the August 2018 visit of the then British Prime Minister, Theresa May.
A statement by Senior Press and Public Affairs Officer, British High Commission, Abuja, Chris Olaoluwa Ogunmodede, said a delegation of senior officials from the UK would be holding meetings government and military officials from Nigeria to strengthen development, security and defence cooperations.
The UK delegation to Nigeria include senior officials from the United Kingdom Department for International Development (DFID), Ministry of Defence (MOD) and Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO).
Other members of the delegation includes the Director General of Country Programmes at the Department for International Development, George Turkington; the Director Africa at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Harriet Mathews; the Assistant Chief of Defence Staff, Ministry of Defence, Major General Charles Stickland.
The visit also coincided with the official visit of Paul Arkwright, ex- British envoy who is in the country to discuss trade and investment relationship between the United Kingdom and federal and state governments in Nigeria.
The visit of Arkwright, the Chief Executive Officer of the UK-Africa Investment Summit, according to the British High Commission, reinforced the commitment of the British Government to a mutual partnership that offers access to investment opportunities for African firms and entrepreneurs.
The UK-Africa Investment Summit is scheduled to take place in January 2020, and the United Kingdom has expressed hope to work with Nigeria using the summit as a platform to secure greater investment from companies in the United Kingdom to support Nigeria’s economic development and create jobs.
Arkwright on arrival in Abuja, said: “I am thrilled to be back in Nigeria, after three wonderful years here as British High Commissioner.
“My visit reinforces British commitment to a mutual partnership that offers access to investment opportunities for African firms and entrepreneurs, a key theme of the forthcoming UK-Africa Investment Summit.”
Commenting on the visits, the British High Commissioner to Nigeria, Catriona Laing said: “I am delighted to host two high-powered teams from London in the same week. These visits demonstrate the British Government’s commitment to strengthening further our deep and historic partnership with Nigeria.”