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PMB seeks Portuguese support to curb smuggling

President Muhammadu Buhari has sought the support of Portugal in efforts to stop the inflow of arms and smuggling of Nigeria’s crude oil through the Sahel region and the Gulf of Guinea.

President Buhari made the appeal in New York, at the sidelines of the 74th UN General Assembly, when he met with President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa of Portugal.

President Buhari said the Sahel had been awash with illegal small arms, worsening the security situation in the Northeast of Nigeria, adding however that his administration was doing its utmost to bring things under control.

President Buhari also urged Portugal to invest in Nigeria’s infrastructure to boost socio-economic activities of her people.

He told the Portuguese President that Nigeria was a large country, with a vast population and poor infrastructure, and therefore need people to come and invest in roads, rail, power, airports, and many others.

He thanked Portugal for the steadfast support it had given Nigeria on many fronts, adding that concern about global issues was genetic for Portugal.

President Buhari said in the second term of the administration, they would consolidate on what they started in the first term and thereafter retire in peace and comfort.

President de Sousa appraised the excellent relations between the two countries, noting that Portugal had companies in Nigeria.

He said Portugal shared with Nigeria the same opinion on international issues and worries, saying that his country had been following closely the situation in the Sahel, and offered to support Nigeria in fighting terrorism.

The Portuguese President thereafter invited President Buhari to declare open the Euro-African Forum to be hosted by Portugal next year.

Abdullah Bello

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