President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday called on the United State government to consider relocating the headquarters of its U.S African Command from Germany to the African continent.
The president made the call during a virtual meeting with the US Secretary of State, Anthony Blinken.
In order to ensure the effectiveness of the strategy towards combating insecurity, President Muhammadu Buhari has implored the U.S. to reconsider relocating U.S. Africa Command (AFRICOM) from Stuttgart, Germany, to Africa, nearer the Theatre of Operation.
Buhari made this appeal during a virtual meeting with the U.S. Secretary of State, Mr Anthony Blinken, on Tuesday in Abuja.
According to a statement by Femi Adesina, the president’s special adviser on media and publicity, Buhari said “Considering the growing security challenges in West and Central Africa, Gulf of Guinea, Lake Chad region and the Sahel, weighing heavily on Africa, it underscores the need for the U.S. to consider re-locating AFRICOM Headquarters from Stuttgart, Germany to Africa and near the Theatre of Operation”.
According to him, this is important considering AFRICOM’s mandate is to partner with countries to counter transnational threats.
Relocating to Africa would strengthen ongoing efforts to check the security situation, with likely effect on other nations, Buhari explained.
The Nigerian leader also urged the international community to support Nigeria and the sub-region in tackling growing security challenges to avoid spillovers.
He said: “The security challenges in Nigeria remain of great concern to us and impacted more negatively by exerting complex negative pressures in the Sahel, Central, and West Africa, as well as the Lake Chad Region.
“Compounded as the situation remains, Nigeria and its security forces remain resolutely committed to containing them and addressing their root causes.
“The support of important and strategic partners like the U.S. cannot be overstated as the consequences of insecurity will affect all nations hence the imperative for concerted cooperation and collaboration of all nations to overcome these challenges.”
According to the president, Nigeria will enhance collaborations in all forms, with friends and strategic partners, to work together for greater security for all, which remains the most significant condition for overcoming existential challenges.
On his part, the Secretary of State said that he would be delighted to build on the foundation that was laid between the two countries more than 60 years ago.
He disclosed that areas of discussion with Nigeria would include “how to build our economies back after the COVID-19 pandemic, security for vulnerable communities, and climate issues.”