Buhari’s African Finance Summit in Paris was NOT postponed, see details

Nigeria’s president Muhammadu Buhari is in Paris, and some people seem to think the event the president is there for has been cancelled.

Several Twitter influencers took to the platform to mock the president.

Reno Omokri, an aide to former president Goodluck Jonathan tweeted an article about a postponed France-Africa summit with the caption “Yet @MBuhari has landed in Paris. And this man is meant to be the leader of 200 million Nigerians. Oh dear!

Actually, the President arrived in Paris, France for the African Finance Summit, an event which hasn’t been cancelled or postponed.

The president had departed Abuja on a four-day official visit on Sunday.

The President’s Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Malam Garba Shehu, had in a statement on Saturday, said the summit will focus on reviewing the African economy following shocks from the coronavirus pandemic and getting relief, especially from increased debt burden on countries.

He added that the summit, to be hosted by President Emmanuel Macron of France, would draw major stakeholders in the global financial institutions and some Heads of Government, who will, collectively, discuss external funding and debt treatment for Africa, and private sector reforms.

He said, during the visit, Buhari would meet with the French President to discuss growing security threats in Sahel and Lake Chad region, political relations, and economic ties.

However, the event that was postponed is the Africa-France summit, which was to be held in early July in Montpellier, southern France.

The summit was pushed back to early October because travel constraints linked to the Covid-19 epidemic will be “insufficiently lifted this summer”, the town hall announced on Friday.

“The travel constraints set at the international level will be insufficiently lifted this summer to allow the arrival of hundreds of guests from the African continent. Without their massive presence, the event would lose much of its meaning,” wrote Montpellier town hall in a statement.

The event, planned from 8 to 10 July, will now take place from 7 to 9 October 2021, the French presidency confirmed to AFP.

Why are Nigerians concerned about Buhari’s travels?

In 2018, the president spent 5 months in a London hospital treating an ear infection, during his stay rumors began circulating that the president had died and had been replaced with a clone. He would later dispell those rumors at a press conference saying “this is me”.

Since then, president Buhari has spent several more holidays visiting his doctors in London including an episode in March when the president travelled on the same day local doctors were going on strike due to low wages and poor working conditions in Nigerian hospitals.


A writer! Columnist and an academic researcher
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