Former Vice President Atiku Abubakar has sent a congratulatory message to the newly inaugurated leaders of United States, Joe Biden and Kamala Harris.
In the message released on Thursday, Atiku asked the new US leadership to support Nigeria’s fight against terror and remove all travel restrictions imposed on Nigerian citizens by the Donald Trump administration.
Since 2009, Nigeria has battled an insurgency across its northeast region and bandit attacks have increased in recent years.
The Trump administration, in a four-year crackdown on immigration into the US, also passed policies that restricted Nigerians and other countries from pursuing long-term visits to the world’s largest economy.
In a tweet, Atiku said Nigeria has enjoyed good relations with the US since 1961, and US support will help nurture the nation’s democracy.
“As @POTUS, @JoeBiden begins his tenure as the 46th President of the United States of America, I am confident that this new era will mark America’s regeneration and her reaffirmation as the beacon of democracy to the world,” Atiku said.
“As I congratulate President Biden and @VP, @KamalaHarris, I urge them and their administration to strengthen US-Nigeria ties, and help our beloved nation’s war on terror by providing every type of support required to win our war against the insurgency we face.
“I also look forward to the removal of every travel restriction on Nigerian citizens, in keeping with the good relations that has existed between our two nations beginning with the July 27, 1961 state visit of our first Prime Minister, Alhaji Tafawa Balewa, to President John F Kennedy, and continuing over the decades since then.
“As the playwright, George Bernard Shaw once said, America and Nigeria are two nations divided by a common language. And millions of Nigerians and I wish to see that relationship sustained to the mutual benefit of both our democratic nations.
“Congratulations once again and may God bless both our nations and bring about a beneficial tenure for your administration.”