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Buhari to attend Guinea Bissau national day celebration

President Muhammadu Buhari will Thursday depart Abuja for Bissau to attend ceremonies celebrating the National Day of the Republic of Guinea Bissau, September 24.

A statement by Presidential Spokesman, Femi Adesina, said the President will join the Heads of State and Government of Senegal, Cote d’ Ivoire, Rwanda, Mauritania, Togo and Liberia to mark the 47th independence anniversary of Guinea Bissau.

The Guinea Bissau leader Umaro Embalo, had visited Nigeria in March, this year, soliciting Nigeria’s support after wining the presidential election with 53.55 percent of the total votes cast in the run off election

Her had earlier visited Nigeria on January 6th , 2020, on what was described as a “thank you visit” to President Buhari

The visit will be President Buhari’s third trip outside the country since the outbreak of the global Coronavirus pandemic, the first being the ECOWAS emergency meeting in Mali following the Military Coup in that country, and the ECOWAS leaders meeting early in September, held in Niamey, Niger Republic to participate in the Fifty-Seventh Ordinary Session of the ECOWAS Authority of Heads of State and Government.

In Bissau, President Buhari will also commission a road named in his honour by the host government.

The Nigerian leader and other invited Heads of State will attend an official lunch hosted by President Umaro Sissoco Embaló of Guinea Bissau.

Nigeria and Guinea Bissau established diplomatic relations in 1974.

Following a military coup in that country, Nigeria in 2012 deployed troops under the auspices of ECOWAS Mission in Guinea Bissau (ECOMIB) to maintain peace.

President Buhari had in response to a request for assistance by the Government of Guinea Bissau, during its last legislative elections, donated $500,000 dollars, 17 vehicles and 350 electoral kits to support the country’s electoral process.

In May this year, the President received President Embalo in Abuja, during which the Nigerian leader congratulated his counterpart on his confirmation as President, assuring him of Nigeria’s support to the new government in Guinea Bissau.

The Nigerian troops were only withdrawn on September 10, 2020 after the return of stability to the West African country.

The President will be accompanied by top government officials including the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama, the Minister of Defence, Major-General Bashir Salihi Magashi (Rtd), the National Security Adviser, Major-General Babagana Monguno (Rtd) and the Director-General, National Intelligence Agency, Ahmed Rufai Abubakar,

President Buhari will return to Abuja at the end of the ceremonies on Thursday.

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