President Muhammadu Buhari has arrived in Ethiopia for the 33rd Ordinary Session of Heads of State and Government of the African Union (AU).
The President’s aircraft touched down in Addis Ababa, the Ethiopian capital city on Friday evening hours after he left Abuja.
He was received by the Prime Minister of Ethiopia, Abiy Ahmed, and Nigeria’s Ambassador to the North African country, Ambassador Bankole Adeoye, among others.
Earlier, the Presidency in a statement said President Buhari would be with other leaders from the 55-country organisation for the AU Summit with the theme, “Silencing the Guns: Creating Conducive Conditions for Africa’s Development.”
During the summit, the Nigerian leader would take part in the 29th Forum of Heads of State and Government of Participating States of the African Peer Review Mechanism (APRM) and the 27th Session of New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD) Heads of State and Government Orientation Committee (AUDA-NEPAD).
The meetings, according to the statement, will precede the 33rd Ordinary Session of the Assembly.
“In Nigeria’s capacity as a member of the AU Peace and Security Council, President Buhari will participate in the High-Level meeting of the Peace and Security Council on the situation in the Sahel and Libya, and High-Level Ad-Hoc Committee on South Sudan,” his spokesman Garba Shehu said.
On the margins of the summit, the President would deliver a keynote speech at a High-Level Side Event on “Stop the War on Children: Dividend of Silencing the Guns.”
He would also hold bilateral meetings with several leaders and begin a state visit to Ethiopia on February 11, at the invitation of Mr Ahmed.
President Buhari travelled to Ethiopia in company with Governors Ben Ayade and Hope Uzodinma of Cross River and Imo States.
The chairmen of the Committees on Foreign Affairs in the Senate and House of Representatives, Senator Adamu Bulkachuwa and Yusuf Baba, were also part of the leaders accompanying the President.
Ministers on his entourage are Geoffrey Onyeama (Foreign Affairs), Hadi Sirika (Aviation), Niyi Adebayo (Industry, Trade, and Investment), Retired Major-General Bashir Salihi Magashi (Defence), and Lai Mohammed (Information and Culture).
Other government officials are the National Security Adviser (NSA), Retired Major-General Babagana Monguno; the Director-General of the National Intelligence Agency (NIA), Ambassador Ahmed Abubakar; and the National Coordinator/Chief Executive Officer of NEPAD (Nigeria), Gloria Akobundu.