Nigerian VP Shettima Meets with US Deputy Secretary Campbell to Discuss Security and Partnerships

Nigerian VP Shettima meets US Deputy Secretary Campbell, discuss security, economic ties, and repatriation of illicit funds. Bilateral partnership strengthened, with focus on combating terrorism, boosting trade, and empowering youth and women.

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Nasiru Eneji Abdulrasheed
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Nigerian VP Shettima Meets with US Deputy Secretary Campbell to Discuss Security and Partnerships

Nigerian VP Shettima Meets with US Deputy Secretary Campbell to Discuss Security and Partnerships

Nigerian Vice President Kashim Shettima returned to Abuja on Tuesday after representing President Bola Tinubu at the International Development Association (IDA21) Summit in Nairobi, Kenya. Upon his arrival at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Shettima held a closed-door meeting with U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Kurt Campbell and his team.

The discussions between Shettima and Campbell focused on a range of topics, including security cooperation, bilateral relations, shared visions, technological collaboration, and economic partnerships. Both Nigeria and the United States pledged to work on deepening their bilateral relationships and enhancing connectivity between the two nations.

During his visit to Nigeria, Deputy Secretary Campbell co-chaired the sixth U.S.-Nigeria Binational Commission (BNC) with Nigerian Foreign Minister Yusuf Tuggar. The BNC meeting aimed to strengthen the multifaceted partnership between the United States and Nigeria, with key outcomes including a renewed commitment to expand trade and investment ties, particularly in empowering young Nigerians and women in the tech sector. The two countries also reaffirmed their dedication to bolstering democratic institutions, upholding the rule of law, and respecting human rights.

Why this matters: The meeting between Vice President Shettima and Deputy Secretary Campbell highlights the significance of the bilateral relationship between Nigeria and the United States. As both countries confront security challenges and seek to foster economic growth, strengthening partnerships and cooperation is vital for addressing shared concerns and promoting stability in the region.

During the discussions, the United States reiterated its support for Nigeria in combating terrorism and other security threats. The U.S. pledged to assist in building more capable, professional, and accountable security forces while ensuring respect for human rights. The Nigerian government also appealed to the United States to repatriate more illicit funds transferred from Nigerian officials through the U.S. banking system, noting that the $308 million returned so far is insufficient compared to Nigeria's losses from illegal fund transfers over the years. Nigeria has committed to utilizing the repatriated funds for infrastructure development projects in roads, schools, education, and other vital sectors.

Deputy Secretary Campbell's visit to Nigeria marked his first trip to the continent in his current role, signifying a notable return to the region where he began his career. In addition to the BNC meeting, Campbell met with U.S. exchange program alumni in Nigeria, expressing admiration for their contributions to the country's future.

Key Takeaways

  • VP Shettima met with US Deputy Secretary Campbell to discuss security, economy, and tech.
  • US-Nigeria Binational Commission meeting aimed to strengthen trade, investment, and democracy ties.
  • US pledged support for Nigeria in combating terrorism and repatriating illicit funds.
  • Nigeria seeks more repatriated funds from the US for infrastructure development.
  • Campbell's visit signifies a return to Africa, meeting with US exchange program alumni.