Bola Tinubu delivered his first address at the 78th session of the United Nations General Assembly in the United States.
In the early hours of Wednesday, September 20, 2023, President Bola Tinubu delivered his first address at the United Nations General Assembly and raised important issues to encourage solidarity among member nations.
In his speech, Tinubu spoke about the recent wave of military coups in Africa; the need for the international communities to see African development as a priority for investments among other issues.
These are the key takeaways from the President’s speech at the 78th United Nations General Assembly in the United States.
The development of Africa
In line with the theme of the 78th edition of the United Nations General Assembly, “Rebuilding trust and reigniting global solidarity…”, Tinubu called on world leaders and global institutions to see the development of Africa as a priority.
He said Nigeria and Africa are open for businesses that will be mutually beneficial to the continent and investors.
In seeking investors’ cooperation with the continent, President Tinubu said, direct investment in critical industries and meaningful debt relief are important for partnership.
He also asked prospective partners to open their ports to a wider range and larger quantity of African exports.
Democracy and military coups in Africa
In light of the recent wave of military coups in Africa, President Tinubu rejected any political arrangement that perpetuates injustice.
He said the recent ouster of democratically elected leaders by soldiers in Niger and Gabon signified a demand for solutions to perennial problems in Africa.
As the Chairman of the Economic Community of the West African State (ECOWAS), Tinubu said he’s still negotiating with Niger military leaders to re-establish democratic governance in a manner that addresses the political and economic challenges confronting the country.
Terrorism and human trafficking in Africa
The President of Nigeria also raised concern about the protracted battle against violent extremists in Africa.
This according to him has brought about a dark channel of inhumane commerce on the continent with perpetrators trading men, women and children as their personal possessions.
To address human trafficking and terrorism in the continent, Tinubu called on the international community to strengthen its commitment to arrest the flow of arms and violent people into the West African regions.
Protection of mineral-rich areas in Africa
To maintain and sustain global trust and solidarity, President Tinubu advocated that the continent’s mineral-rich areas must be secured from pilfering and conflict.
He said many areas with mineral resources in Africa have become catacombs of misery and exploitation because foreign entities support local criminals with arms to illegally mine gold and other resources in Africa.
Citing the Democratic Republic of the Congo as an example, Tinubu said the country has suffered exploitation for decades despite the strong UN presence there. He added that the mayhem visited on resource-rich areas in Africa does not respect national boundaries.
He, therefore, called on the UN member nations to work with Africa to deter their firms and nationals from this 21st-century pillage of the continent’s riches.
Highlighting the severe impacts of climate change in Nigeria, Morocco and Libya, President Tinubu believes African countries have the political will to fight climate change, but they will have to do it only on their own terms.
Tinubu further highlighted some remedial actions his government is considering addressing the phenomenon in Nigeria.
As regards continental efforts, Tinubu said the world would record important victories in the fight against climate change if established economies were more forthcoming with public and private sector investment for Africa’s preferred initiatives.
This according to him would go far in demonstrating that global solidarity is real and working