Following this week’s phone conversation between Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari and U.S President Donald Trump, the white house has shared a version of their conversation on its website. It states;
“President Donald J. Trump spoke this week with President Muhammadu Buhari of Nigeria to discuss the strong cooperation between the United States and Nigeria, including on shared security, economic, and governance priorities.
“President Trump underscored the importance the United States places on its relationship with Nigeria, and he expressed interest in working with President Buhari to expand the strong partnership. The leaders agreed to continue close coordination and cooperation in the fight against terrorism in Nigeria and worldwide.
“President Trump expressed support for the sale of aircraft from the United States to support Nigeria’s fight against Boko Haram. President Trump thanked President Buhari for the leadership he has exercised in the region and emphasized the importance of a strong, secure, and prosperous Nigeria that continues to lead in the region and in international forums.”
Prior to the official release on the website, White House Press Secretary, Sean Spicer, had during a press briefing held on Tuesday, also confirmed that President Donald Trump spoke to President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday.
Speaking to reporters, Mr. Spicer stated; “In addition to his in-person meetings with the prime ministers of Japan and Canada, the President also recently had phone calls with the presidents of Tunisia, Peru, Nigeria, Colombia and South Africa.” Spicer however, did not disclose further details of the call.
The call between the Presidents was the first time both leaders would communicate directly since Mr. Trump assumed office as his country’s 45th president on January 20.
Immediately after the conversation, Presidency sources reported that both Presidents had a cordial conversation. According to them,Buhari congratulated the American leader on his election as President of the United States, while Donald Trump used the occasion to invite the Nigerian President to Washington at a mutually convenient date.
The two leaders discussed ways to improve cooperation in the fight against terrorism through the provision of necessary equipment.
Since the news of the conversation, there has been fuelled speculations that the conversation did not happen, as some quarters have accused the Nigerian presidency of lying.
During his first weeks in office, U.S President, Donald Trump has been increasingly chatting with other world leaders and has this week turned his attention to Africa.
Shortly after speaking with President Buhari, President Trump South African President Jacob Zuma. A statement from Zuma’s office states that both presidents reaffirmed their commitment to strengthening the already strong bilateral relations between the two countries, given that there are six hundred US companies in South Africa and strong trade relations between the two countries.
The statement said Trump and Zuma also “discussed the need to work together on multilateral issues as well especially the quest for peace and stability on the African continent.”