The President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), was on Tuesday conferred with the Niger Republic’s highest national honour, Grand Croix Des Ordre National Du Niger.
Grand Croix Des Ordre National Du Niger when converted to English simply means ‘Grand Cross of the National Order of Niger.’
Buhari was conferred with the honour by the country’s outgoing President, Mahamadou Issoufou.
The Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, disclosed this in a statement titled “President Buhari receives highest Niger Republic award, congratulates outgoing President Mahamadou Issoufou on Mo Ibrahim prize.”
Adesina quoted the President as congratulating Issoufou for successful completion of his second tenure, and winning the prestigious 2020 Mo Ibrahim prize for Achievement in African Leadership, describing him as a worthy African leader.
He said Buhari felicitated with the outgoing leader for upholding the tenets of democracy, improving the economy of his country and consolidating the good relations that existed between both countries.
The President was quoted as saying that “Mr. President, let me start by congratulating you on the successful completion of your second term as President of our sister country, the Republic of Niger.
“I also congratulate the good people of Niger for the successful conduct of a free, fair and credible election.
“The achievements during your tenure as President have been widely acclaimed including through your recent award of the Mo Ibrahim Prize.
“You have earned the respect and affection of your people at home and your brethren across the border in Nigeria.”
Buhari said his first visit after swearing-in in 2015 was to Niger Republic, noting that the choice of a neighbouring country underscored the value and quality of relations between both countries.
“Nigeria-Niger relations are based on a long common border and shared cultural and historical roots. Relations between the two countries have, over the years, been very cordial and fraternal. There is a spirit of good neighbourliness between us.
“Nigeria’s borders with Niger have always been largely peaceful. There have been no serious border conflicts between the two countries.
“Each country has based its diplomatic relations upon non-interference in the internal affairs of the other. It is therefore gratifying to state that Niger has remained one of the most trusted and reliable neighbours of Nigeria,’’ the President added.
Buhari said the cultural similarity between both countries, which include common languages such as Hausa, Kanuri and Fulfude and a common border of one thousand five hundred (1500) kilometres, further strengthened good relations, adding that Nigeria and Niger “refused to be divided and alienated by the artificial borders imposed by the former colonial powers.’’
He said the emergence of President Issoufou in 2011 marked a watershed in the relationship between the two countries as the frontier of cooperation expanded and mutual trust further strengthened, while congratulating the President-elect, Mohamed Bazoum, for winning the elections.
The President urged the President-elect of Niger to build on the achievements of his predecessor in office.
“Many landmark projects were initiated and successfully executed, among which was the successful border re-demarcation exercise without any incident. The socio-economic partnership resulted in the ground-breaking ceremony of a railway project from the North West of Nigeria to Maradi in Niger, which is in furtherance of regional and continental integration, joint venture and inter-state trade.
“The military cooperation that has availed the Nigerian Intelligence community information on the activities of terrorists is additional evidence of this solidarity. It was against this backdrop that Niger agreed to become part of the multinational effort to tackle insurgents’ activities across the borders of Nigeria, Niger, Cameroon and Chad Republics.
“As you know, this culminated in the establishment of the Multi-National Joint Task Force under the auspices of the Lake Chad Basin Commission, with Sector 4 based in Diffa, Republic of Niger,’’ he said.
Buhari also said some of Nigeria’s prestigious military institutions like Armed Forces Command and Staff College, Jaji and National War College, Abuja, and the Police Academy in Gwoza and Kano have provided training for the security officers of the neigbouring country.
In his remarks, President Issoufou thanked President Buhari and all Nigerians for the support he received as leader of his country for ten years, particularly during his time as Chairman of ECOWAS, describing Nigeria as a “second home’’.
The Nigerien President said the highest national award of his country was bestowed on President Buhari because of his “fraternity, vigour, patriotism and determination to move Africa forward, starting from the West Coast.’’
The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama, said the Nigerien President distinguished himself in leadership at both national and regional levels, leaving a legacy of avoiding the trap of altering the constitution to prolong his stay in office.
Onyeama said the Mo Ibrahim award was most deserved.
Full list of notable Nigerian footballers who have won FA Cup
Septuagenarian escaped lynching for stealing human hair in barber shop
Nigerian gay rights activist, Edafe Okporo, proposes to lover
PHOTOS: Ndidi dedicates FA Cup victory with Leicester City to daughter, Jaina
Actress Ada Ameh celebrates 47th birthday with gorgeous photos
My son should face death penalty for Iniubong’s murder – Uduak’s father
Iheanacho, Ndidi win FA Cup with Leicester City
Housewives are humans, not robots – Actress Mary Njoku warns men
Baba Ijesha: Mum installed CCTV camera after suspecting sexual abuse
#PantamiResign: Nigerians ask communications minister to resign over alleged support for Taliban, Al-Qaeda
My daughter wasn’t suicidal – Father Of AKA’s fiancée at funeral service
PHOTOS: Lady, who begged for ₦5,000, allegedly refuses to refund N.5m mistakenly sent her by Dubai-based Nigerian
VIDEO: Woman assaults boss for sexual harassment
Baba Ijesha rape saga: Actor Yomi Fabiyi fires back at Iyabo Ojo
Nigerians attack Newspaper Editor for exonerating Pantanmi years after orchestrating former minister’s resignation
I administer laxative as emergency contraceptive after sex, addicted teenager reveals
VIDEO: Watermelon seller scrapes dirty foot with fruit knife
VIDEO: Please don’t cry, we lost a champion – Adeboye speaks on son’s funeral
VIDEO: Suspected kidnapper takes police to location where weapons are hidden
VIDEO: Pastor Adefarasin advises Church members to have Plan B, escape route out of Nigeria in case…
Buhari sing, dances to ‘Don’t Worry’ by legendary Bob Marley in video shared by his aide
VIDEO: Commuters, motorists abandon vehicles during Mile 12 traffic robbery
VIDEO: How Ogun police officers harrassed, extorted me of N153,000 – LASU student
VIDEO: Policemen, Okada riders clash in Ogba
Entertainment22 hours ago
Davido’s baby mama, Sophia Momodu, gushes over daughter’s sixth birthday
Metro22 hours ago
#JusticeForHinyUmoren: Lady shares Facebook chat with suspected killer
Entertainment21 hours ago
What people don’t know about my decision to sing Gospel Music – Chidinma Ekile
Entertainment19 hours ago
Why I hate Instagram, Actress Halle Berry reveals
Crime23 hours ago
Lebanese nabbed for impregnating, using underage girls for pornography in Jos
Sports18 hours ago
FA Cup: Full list of past winners and managers (1872 – 2020)
Sports12 hours ago
Iheanacho, Ndidi win FA Cup with Leicester City
Entertainment16 hours ago
Reactions as Blessing Okoro advises men to avoid dating hungry girls