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Buhari seeks extradition of fugitives from UK

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By Bukola Olasanmi

Muhammadu Buhari hassought the cooperation of the United Kingdom (UK) to extradite Nigerian fugitives.

He made the request  during a bilateral meeting with British Prime Minister Boris Johnson in London.

Both leaders met on the sidelines of the UK-Africa Investment Summit 2020.

According to a statement by Presidential spokesman Femi Adesina, Buhari said the ongoing anti-corruption war in Nigeria, though slow but painstaking, needed the cooperation of the UK National Crime Agency.

Former Minister of Petroleum Resources Mrs. Diezani Alison-Madueke and other Nigerians found a safe haven  in the UK and other European countries after fleeing into exile after the 2015 when the the Buhari administration came on board.

In 2017, a Federal High Court in Lagos, presided over by Justice Abdulazeez Anka, had ordered the final forfeiture of N7.6 billion alleged loot recovered by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) from Mrs. Alison-Madueke.

Buhari also updated Johnson on the positive developments made by his administration in different areas of national endeavour.

He told the British PM of the strides in agriculture, leading almost to self-sufficiency in rice and other grains, which is saving the country billions in foreign exchange, which are now deployed to other areas of development.

On the war against insurgency, the President said things were a lot better as the people’s minds have been disabused on the real philosophy of Boko Haram.

He said the though there were challenges in the area of resettling displaced people, it was being tackled frontally.

“We have a long history with the British military, and we are collaborating,” Buhari added.

On Climate Change, the President said it was a challenge to Nigeria and neighbouring African countries, especially with the shrinkage of the Lake Chad.

He also said the country was making progress on education, particularly that of the girl child.

In his remarks, Johnson thanked Buhari for being “a regional leader who gives strong encouragement to the West”.

He congratulated him on the jobs being created through agriculture, and urged him to do more.

The UK leader equally lauded the Nigerian President for what he called the “social and economic benefits” that had accrued to the country since 2015.

Johnson pledged that the necessary hand of fellowship would be extended to Nigeria on its war against corruption, through the National Crime Agency.

He pledged to cooperate with Nigeria and other African countries in the inter-basin water transfer, which could solve the Lake Chad problem, and enhance security in the sub-region.

On the Commonwealth Free Trade Area, the Prime Minister applauded the idea and pledged a careful consideration.

He charged the Nigerian leader to keep the national autonomy of his country intact, noting that in the future, Nigeria would not just be a continental power but an international power.

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