United States’ President, Joe Biden, has commended President Bola Tinubu for his “strong leadership”, especially in the crisis triggered by the coup in Niger Republic.
Nigerien military led by Amadou Abdramane, toppled the democratically-elected President Mohamed Bazoum.
The military leadership also announced the dissolution of the nation’s constitution, suspension of all institutions, and closure of the country’s borders.
Tinubu in his role as the chairman of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) – a sub-regional group to which the Niger Republic belongs – had swiftly condemned the coup and imposed sanctions on the new regime.
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ECOWAS had also dispatched a series of delegations, including the one led by Abdulsalami Abubakar, former military head of state, to negotiate with the country’s military junta.
In a statement released by the White House during the second day of the G20 summit in India, the US president commended Tinubu for preserving the rule of law in Niger and also acknowledged his national economic policies in Nigeria.
The US president added that America is committed to “reinforcing its longstanding relationship” with Nigeria.
Biden also acknowledged the steps taken by Tinubu’s administration “to reform Nigeria’s economy”.
He thanked the Nigerian president for his “strong leadership” as the chair of ECOWAS, towards defending democracy and preserving the rule of law in Niger and the broader region.
“Nigeria’s invitation to the G20 Summit is a recognition of Nigeria’s important global role as Africa’s largest democracy and economy Republic amid military takeover,” Biden said.
On August 26, in a meeting with Molly Phee, US assistant secretary of state for African affairs, Tinubu said the crisis in Niger is detrimental to the economic reforms in Nigeria.
The president maintained that although he is holding ECOWAS from military intervention in Niger Republic, defending democracy in the region is sacrosanct, adding that the “consensus is that we will not allow anyone to insincerely buy time”.
“We are deep in our attempts to peacefully settle the issue in Niger by leveraging on our diplomatic tools. I continue to hold ECOWAS back, despite its readiness for all options, in order to exhaust all other remedial mechanisms.
“War is not ideal for my economic reforms, nor for the region, but the defence of democracy is sacrosanct,” Tinubu said.