President Goodluck Jonathan has urged Britain to support Nigeria in her quest for a permanent seat in the United Nations.
Receiving the British Prime Minister David Cameron at the State House in Lagos during the week, Jonathan said the role Nigeria had played in ensuring democratic rule across the West African region and the continent as a whole stood it out for the position.
Cameron, who was on a brief visit to Nigeria on the invitation of Pan African University, Ajah Lagos had seized the opportunity to see the Nigerian President who also had been special guest at the occasion.
Cameron was a Guest Speaker at the Pan African University, Ajah, Lagos, Tuesday. Cameron used the opportunity to congratulate Jonathan on his election victory earlier in the year.
The two leaders however met at the State House, Marina,Lagos to hold bi-lateral talks after which they announced that the two countries has agreed on certain issues touching on both countries as old allies.
They both agreed to co-operate on a number of areas, particularly in fighting terrorism, which in recent times had posed the biggest threat to Nigeria’s stability.
Prime Minister Cameron promised that Britain would share its expertise in anti-terrorism with the Nigerian government.
Cameron acknowledging some facts from President Jonathan saw the importance of Nigeria as a stabilising factor both in the West African region and the African continent.
Speaking first after their meeting at the State House, Marina, Lagos, Cameron congratulated Jonathan for his victory at the April polls and said Nigeria was important to Britain especially with its massive economic potentials and recording a growth rate of 8 per cent per annum.
He identified issues confronting Nigeria such as security, terrorism, illegal migration, high child and maternal mortality and a dwindling economy.
Cameron said remedial steps would be taken to address the challenges, starting with increasing the volume of trade between the two countries to £8 billion in 2014 and doubling power supply within the same period.
He said: “I congratulate you once again on your election victory. And anyone in doubt why Africa matters to Britain should just look at Nigeria; a country with massive potentials growing by 8 percent a year and said to be the largest in Africa. The economy of Lagos alone is the size of 32 African countries added together. A country with security issues, terrorism, crime, illegal immigration and a country with many children out of school and thousands of women dying at child birth… Nigeria presents a development challenge that must be met if we are ever to meet the millennium development goals. President Jonathan and I today agreed and set agenda in each of these areas”.
“First on trade, we agreed to double trade between our two countries by 2014 to £8 billion. We agreed to double Nigeria’s power supply by 2015 to address one of the biggest obstacles to Nigeria’s growth. I welcome the president’s leadership role to liberalise trade in West Africa. On my part, I agreed we will support this ultimate goal of free trade.”