Nigeria’s Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo has urged African nations to collaborate more, especially as it regards developing their economies for the benefit of their people.
He said this should be prioritized, ahead of other forms of international cooperation.
Professor Osinbajo expressed this view at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, while receiving the Vice President of Liberia, Mr. Joseph Nyumah Boakai, who paid him a courtesy visit.
“We must engender stronger relationships between our countries. That is what Africans need now, we have to help ourselves first before others come, we should look for ways we can benefit each other,” the Nigerian Vice President advised.
Professor Osinbajo suggested the creation of a bilateral economic council that can promote business interests from both countries, as he observed that there are Nigerian businessmen that can invest in Liberia.
“Nigeria and Liberia need to work together to develop our economies,” he said.
He underscored the important task for African governments to create the enabling environments for agricultural and industrial development.
Liberia’s Vice President, Mr Joseph Boakai said African countries can learn a lot from Nigeria’s electoral system, as exemplified by the smooth conduct of its 2015 general elections.
He said African countries must also follow the Nigerian path, in order to shun violence, to guarantee peace and development.
“Nigeria remains a very important big brother to Liberia. You have made a lot of sacrifices to our country, including through ECOMOG and the United Nations Mission in Liberia. The transition in Nigeria was free and fair and there is peace in the country. We believe this is the way that African countries should begin to conduct their election business. Our people are tired of conflicts. We want development,” he said.
Mr Boakai further said Nigeria will have a role to play in the conduct of his country’s election slated for next year, as he emphasized the message of peace.
“Nigeria will be very much involved; we know that for the whole of Africa now, we keep looking forward to good governance, through free and fair elections. We want peaceful and stable Africa,” Mr Boakai said.
The Liberian Vice President confirmed his intention to run for the election.
“Sure I am a candidate and I can say so because for the first time in the history of our country, an incumbent President has now turned over the flag bearership to a Vice President who is contending. So I am a candidate,” he stressed.
Nigeria helping West Africa
Mr Joseph Boakai, acknowledged that Nigeria does care for Liberia, and that Nigerian businesses are helping the West Africa country in sectors like aviation, banking, insurance and investments.
He also said there are teachers and doctors from Nigeria, who are currently helping to set up schools and health infrastructure in Liberia.
“We are grateful to our brothers and sisters here. We want this relationship to go on, this is the way Africans should go,” the Liberian Vice President concluded.