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Osuntokun calls for inclusive government at Anyaoku institute maiden conference

Osuntokun calls for inclusive government at Anyaoku institute maiden conference

Akinjide Osuntokun, emeritus professor and Baapitan of Oyo, says Nigeria must ensure an inclusive government built on equality, equity, fairness and justice for its effective foreign policy.

The emeritus professor made the observation in a paper “Nigeria’s Foreign Policy: A Retrospect View at the Maiden Symposium of Emeka Anyaoku Institute for International Studies and Diplomacy, Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka on Tuesday.

“In these 62 odd years of Nigeria’s independence, Nigeria has made a success of its foreign policy and diplomacy but there is no doubt there will be room for improvement but it is clear that its foreign policy based on its unchanging national interest will remain unchanged.

“But charity usually begins at home and has an effective foreign policy. Nigeria must ensure that it has an all inclusive government that is built on equality, equity, fairness and justice,” he said.

According to him, Nigeria appears over the years to have followed a well laid out plan in its foreign policy.

“Whatever the fashionable slogan of the era was, whether “Africa is the centrepiece of Nigeria’s Foreign Policy” “concentric circles in which Africa is not the inner circle and the rest of the world is the outside circle or “Economic diplomacy”.

“But it should not be assumed that there was a road map in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs or the cabinet office at the presidency which guided policy formulation and execution,” Osuntokun said.

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Former President Olusegun Obasanjo, who chaired the event called for unity of the country to achieve meaningful development, as well as continuing a better foreign policy.

He extolled the Former Secretary General of Commonwealth, Chief Emeka Anyaoku, who is said to have contributed immensely in international diplomacy.

The former president commended Gov. Willie Obiano for his administration establishment of Anambra International cargo and passenger Airport at Umueri to boost the state economy.

Obasanjo urged Anambra citizens to support incoming state governor, Prof. Chukwuma Sọludo administration as someone who worked with his administration to boost the economy when Sọludo was Central Bank of Nigeria governor.

Emeka Anyaoku, the celebrant commended the guests including a former President Olusegun Obasanjo, Gov. Willie Obiano, Governor- elect, Prof. Chukwuma Sọludo, former Governor Peter Obi, Chief Simon Okeke, Obi of Onitsha, Igwe Alfred Achebe, Sen. Uche Ekwenife.

Anyaoku who also marked his 89 years old at the event, said that Nigeria’s standing and diplomacy in the world cannot but be greatly influenced by the country’s domestic situation.

“As most populous African country, Nigeria has a special responsibility for obliterating the abiding legacy of the slave trade by winning respect and genuine acceptance of the nation of human equality among the non-black races across the world,” he said.

Prof. Charles Esimone, Vice-Chancellor of UNIZIK said the Emeka Anyaoku Institute, launched in October 2017 targeted at fostering learning and promotion of international peace has been somewhat in limbo.

He however was hopeful that the maiden symposium would signal the varsity’s commitment to redouble efforts to make the institution functional.

“We shall mobilise support from public spirited corporate organizations and individuals for infrastructural development of the institute and the organization of academic discourses for the goals realization,” he added.