Nigerian President, Muhammadu Buhari and his Turkish counterpart Tayyip Erdogan failed to sign the much publicized bilateral agreements in arms control, education, defence and security, for undisclosed reasons.
Though President Buhari was warmly received by Erdogan, at the Presential Palace, in Ankara, little was said of the agreements as both leaders scantily addressed the issue.
Addressing a joint press conference after a closed door meeting between both leaders and top officials of the two countries, President Buhari disclosed that the much anticipated agreements would be finalised in weeks to come as no agreement were yet reached by both parties.
“We are very impressed with the progress of the meetings so far and we are going to wait for the details of the meeting between the two countries,” the president said.
While commending the Turkish leader for the warm reception accorded him and his delegation, the Nigerian leader assured President Erdogan and the international community of Nigeria’s readiness to support the fight against terrorism.
He said what the Nigerian government has been able to achieve in the North Eastern part of the country, with the fight against the terrorist group Boko Haram “is an eloquent” demonstration of the will of his government to decimate Boko Haram.
He urged Turkish businessmen to seize the enormous potentials in Nigeria to invest in the country adding that “Nigeria is prepared to accept the Turkish business people to come to Nigeria to explore more of Nigeria’s potentials”.
President Erdogan who also expressed his country’s preparedness to tackle terrorism minced no words in condenming the actions of Fetulah Gullen, a group designated a terrorist organisation by the Turkish government.
He urged world leaders not to be decived by the educational geatures of the group adding that the Turkish government will continue to fight Fetulah “to safeguard our citizens”.
Erdogan stressed his country’s potentials in the area of energy and noted that both countries could develop joint projects in building new refineries to boost energy supply for Nigeria.
He also called for an increase in flight operations from Turkey into Nigeria stressing that request if approved could further increase the volume of trade between Nigeria and Turkey from its present value of $779 million to over $1.45 billion thresholds in the coming years.