The Presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, Atiku Abubakar, on Friday held a crucial meeting with officials of the United States State Department, over a frenzy generated by security reports of an imminent terrorist attack on Nigeria’s capital Abuja.
Those familiar with what was discussed at the meeting said it focused primarily on enhancing security and other mutually beneficial cooperation between Nigeria and the U.S.
Apart from security, other issues discussed include the upcoming 2023 general elections as well as democracy.
Atiku who was accompanied by key officials of his campaign team met with the Assistant Secretary, States Department, Bureau of African Affairs, Molly Phee.
In a press statement signed by Atiku’s Media Adviser, Mr. Paul Ibe, on Saturday, the Atiku team said, “the focus of discussions was on the critical need to seek collaborative solutions to our local issues on democracy and governance, our deteriorating security and the economy.
“Most importantly, the meeting secured commitments to support for free and fair elections in Nigeria, an announcement of a sanction policy before the elections to deter anti-democratic forces and commitments for continued partnership with Nigeria in areas of security and development.”
Other officials of the States Department at the meeting included: Karl Fickenscher, Acting Assistant Administrator, USAID; Scott Busby, Acting Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary
Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labour; Michael Heath, Deputy Assistant Secretary
Bureau of African Affairs; Brian Neubert; Director Office of West African Affairs; Skye Justice, Deputy Director, Office of West African Affairs; Toby Bradley, Deputy Assistant Secretary, Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs; Christopher Landberg, Principal Deputy Coordinator, Bureau of Counterterrorism and Stanley Brown, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary, Bureau of Police-Military Affairs.