New Telegraph

Tinubu to Guterres: World’ll Ignore Nigeria at Its Own Peril

President Bola Tinubu has warned the world not to underrate Nigeria even as he also told wealthy and powerful nations across the globe to stop using human rights advocacy to prevent developing economies from dealing with malignant actors who illicitly siphon and smuggle out Africans’ vast mineral resources.

The President alleged that those illicit funds garnered by the malignant actors were most used to procure arms and ammunition to cause instability and miseries. According to a release by his spokesman, Ajuri Ngelale, the President said this while meeting with United Nations Secretary-General, António Guterres, at his UN Headquarters Office in New York City.

“We are facing the great challenge of scavengers ravaging our lands and oppressing our people on illegal mines—taking our gold and mineral wealth back to developed economies by stealth and violence against Nigerians. Where one’s human right ends, the rights of another begin.

Most especially for self-protection. If we fight, they say ‘human rights,’ but we will now be aggressive and we will question motives. We will stop what is happening in our land. We require your effective collaboration,” the President firmly stated.

The Nigerian leader noted that the UN must transform from being one of the world’s foremost talk-shops to discuss global issues into becoming the world’s foremost action coordination centre, saying that a situation in which 70% of the resources being devoted to the world’s poorest countries were being spent and sent back out on overheads and administrative costs, would defeat the purpose and objectives of the organisation where help is needed most.

“The poverty ravaging our continent and the question of security and counter-terrorism requires us to work in close and effective synergy. The world will ignore Nigeria at its own peril. If we engage in talk shops as real challenges wreak real havoc in real time, we will fail. The time to strike is now. The time to achieve real results is now. I fought for democracy.

I was detained for democracy. I am now President and I am determined to prove that democracy can provide the development that our nation and our continent so urgently demands. “Trace those of us here to our foundations and you will find that we have ties and links with poverty.

We must not be ashamed of that history, but poverty is unacceptable. I am one of the lucky survivors of gripping poverty. Nigeria is truly a giant of 240 million people and counting with a massive youth population. We are done saying too much.

We seek much action. We have arisen out of poverty as individuals, but until our people have arisen out of that, we will not rest, even if it requires decisions at home that make me temporarily unpopular,” the President affirmed. In response, Guterres emphasised that the UN system was in the process of real reform that would largely address some of the institutional frailties and lack of decision-making power for the developing world, on whose behalf more than 75% of UN resources are accrued.

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