The Presidency says President Muhammadu Buhari’s trip to Liberia on Tuesday signifies the importance attached to the security and wellbeing of the country and the rest of West Africa.
Garba Shehu, the President’s media aide, offered the clarification in a statement on Monday in Abuja, as an excuse on why Mr Buhari was visiting Liberia.
On July 26, Liberia marks a Special Independence anniversary, commemorating 175 years of self-rule, with the country being the oldest independent post-colonial African State.
According to him, President Buhari is the Special Guest of Honour at the celebration and will deliver an address.
He said: “The trip to Liberia comes at a time when political instability and the return of coups-d’état have upended two to three decades of democratic order in the sub-region.
“Liberia, Sierra-Leone along with Nigeria are going into elections in 2023 and President Buhari is expected to emphasise to them the importance of free, fair and credible elections.
“The President is expected to stress the importance of the respect for rule of law rule throughout the sub-region. Without rule of Law and constitutional rule, there cannot be security, peace and development.
“Peace and security of Liberia (and Sierra-Leone) is important to Nigeria given the enormous investments in men, material and resources expended by this country to secure the two states.
“Without the leadership of Nigeria in the context of ECOWAS to secure these two, there would not have been a Liberia on the map in its present configuration today.”
The presidential aide said Nigeria and Liberia would bilaterally bring to the table, issues of cross-border terrorism, bolstering defence and trade ties.
“The warmth of the relationship and personal chemistry between President Buhari and George Weah of Liberia is no less significant and will play a key role in the events of tomorrow,” he added.