President Buhari cancels his trip to Niger

The Nigerian president, Muhammadu Buhari, has on Monday announced the cancellation of his earlier scheduled trip to Niger Republic.

The latest development comes after the President’s Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, had announced on Sunday that Buhari would join some world leaders for the 59th Proclamation of Republic of Niger ceremony in Tahoua, Niger.

Shehu had in the statement released on Sunday revealed that the Nigerian President will be at the event alongside some other African leaders including the Presidents of Mali, Burkina Faso, Chad, Mauritania and Niger.

Shehu in the statement added: “After the ceremony, the Nigerian leader will hold bilateral meetings with some of his counterparts before returning to Abuja same day.

“President Buhari will be accompanied on the trip by Governors Aminu Masari, Ibrahim Gaidam and Kashim Shettima of Katsina, Yobe and Borno States respectively.”

However, the Nigerian president failed to embark on the trip which was scheduled for Monday.

Garba Shehu, while explaining the recent development stated that the President cancelled the trip because he felt satisfied that he had had useful discussions with President Mahamadou Issoufou in the course of the weekend during a meeting of the Economic Community of West African States in Abuja.

Shehu stated: “The event to which the President was invited is the celebration of the 59th year of the country’s independence.

“Niger invited the leaders of neighbouring states: the Presidents of Mali, Burkina Faso, Chad, Mauritania and Nigeria.

“President Buhari felt satisfied that he had had useful discussions with his friend and brother, President Mahamadou Issoufou, in the course of the weekend meeting in Abuja, of the Economic Community of West African States.

“After a phone call last (Sunday) night, between the leaders, President Buhari decided to send a delegation made up of the three governors of Katsina, Yobe and Borno States along with the Minister of State, Foreign Affairs to represent him.”