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Not all black men are Nigerians - Buhari tells AU chairperson

Not all black men are Nigerians - Buhari tells AU chairperson

- President Buhari has warned the African Union against repatriating all foreigners to Nigeria without properly verifying their identity

- The president complained about indiscriminate repatriation of foreigners to Nigeria

- He lamented how lack of proper identification has affected the repatriation of some Africans in Libya

President Muhammadu Buhari, on Friday, December 15, met with the chairperson of the African Union Commission, Moussa Faki Mahamat, at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

Femi Adesina, the Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, said in a statement on Friday, that the president has cautioned the AU chairperson against evacuating foreigners to Nigeria.

The president reportedly said most foreigners claimed to be Nigerians so as to get repatriated to the country and warned the AU to seek proper identification before evacuating them to Nigeria.

He said: “We are trying to bring as many as possible from Libya. But not every black man is a Nigerian.

“Others claim to be Nigerians, when they are not, and because they have destroyed their travel papers, we can’t claim them, except there is proper documentation.”

The President, however, noted that good relationship with neighbouring countries were important for security and economic development.

“That was why I visited all our neighbours. Such relationship is crucial for security, and economic development so our youths could get jobs,’’ he said.

On recharging of the Lake Chad, he said “the earlier we get it done, the better, so that our youths don’t continue to dare the Sahara Desert and the Mediterranean Sea.’’

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the AU Commission boss congratulated the president for what he was doing for Nigeria, and for Africa.

He said: “without President Buhari, and without Nigeria, many things would not have been possible.

“I appreciate the role you played in my election and all that you do in ECOWAS, Lake Chad Basin Commission, and the entire continent.

“We follow your battle against corruption, and it is not by chance that you have been chosen by other African leaders to champion the battle in 2018.

“Your commitment is notable, and I seek your support for reforms that we intend to introduce in AU. Your guidance is vital.’’

He stressed the need for Africa to always speak with one voice, stressing that “the voice of Nigeria is preponderant.’’

Meanwhile, previously reported that the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) says a total of 1,317 Nigerians have voluntarily returned from Libya in the last 10 days having been stranded in the volatile country enroute Europe.

The Director-General of NEMA, Alhaji Mustapha Maihajja, made the disclosure while receiving a fresh batch of 116 Nigerians who arrived the country early this morning, Friday, December 15.

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