By Bukola Olasanmi
Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo on Wednesday assured the Nordic countries that the Federal Government’s ongoing efforts at fighting corruption and insecurity would be sustained in the years ahead.
Osinbajo, who gave the assurance at a two-day event in Lagos, tagged “Nordic-Nigeria Connect – Innovating for Change”, said that the government was committed to making the country more investment-friendly.
Represented by the Director-General of the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), Osinbajo said that the Nigeria and the Nordic countries had had a long relations.
“This administration is really committed to fighting the problem of insecurity in this country.
“This administration also feels that for this country to make progress, fighting corruption is not only the way to go, but an obligation.
“We strongly believe that if we are able to to bring corruption and the problem of insecurity under control, we will be able to promote more relationship with the Nordic countries,” he said.
The Ambassador of Finland to Nigeria, Dr Jyrki Pulkkinen, said that there was a lot of potential in Nigeria that needed to be well harnessed.
The new Finnish Ambassador said it was imperative for Nigeria to invest in the development of her infrastructure and education, adding that Nigeria was the biggest economy in West Africa.
“Nigeria really needs to invest in the development of infrastructure and education.
“Education is the key for all countries to develop. People will demand innovation when a country invests heavily in education,” he said.
The Danish Ambassador to Nigeria, Amb. Jesper Kamp, said that innovation, connections, partnerships, knowledge and technology were key to development.
Represented by Denmark’s Ministry Counsellor in Nigeria, Mr Jacob Erikstrup, Kamp, said that from experience Nordic countries had over the years continued to inspire each other.
“You get inspired by good neighbours and good friends when you develop your own country. If you visit our countries you will find a lot of similarities in the way we build and structure our living.
“We all hope to extend the connections, so we can also be inspired for innovations and knowledge exchange by our Nigerian friends,” he said.
The Charge d’Affaires of Sweden Embassy in Nigeria, Amb. Steffan Tillander, said that the Nordic countries believed that through
collaboration and co-creation much more would be achieved.
Tillander said that a well-functioning infrastructure development would not be possible anywhere, adding the Nordic cooperation was a good example to be emulated.
“Our Nordic cooperation is a good example. We believe we are stronger when we join forces at home and abroad.
“Today and tomorrow, we want to combine to join hands with Nigeria for mutual beneficial partnerships,” he said.
The Nordic countries are Norway, Sweden, Finland and Denmark.