UN Solicits Nigeria’s Help to Restore Peace in Guineas Bissau
Kaduna — The United Nations (UN) has urged Nigeria to assist the UN Security Council towards the move to restore constitutional order in Guinea Bissau.
This was contained in a letter handed over to the Nigeria Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ambassador Olugbenga Ashiru, in Abuja at the weekend, by the Special Representative of Secretary-General of the UN in Guinea Bissau, Jose Ramos-Horta.
He said the request was in recognition of Nigeria’s role within the sub-region and Africa at large.
It will be recalled that Guinea-Bissau was in the process of conducting elections when the military overthrew the constitutional order on 12 April 2012.
However, with Guinea-Bissau’s inability to form a government well over a month after the coup, Nigeria, in collaboration with ECOWAS, assisted in negotiations that resulted in the transitional government led by President Manuel Nhamadjo.
Since then, Nigeria has provided various forms of assistance to Guinea Bissau to the value of $50 million.
Remos-Horta, who was also the former President of East Timor, charged President Goodluck Jonathan to do all within his reach in restoring peace and democracy in the country.
Represented by the Chief of Staff of the UN Integrated Peace-Building Mission in Guinea Bissau, Dr Babafemi Badejo, Remos-Horta, said Nigeria has been extremely helpful in trying to restore constitutional order in Guinea Bissau as requested by the UN Security Council.
On how realistic Guinea Bissau’s Presidential Election scheduled for November 24, 2013, would be, he said though there are always challenges in every endeavour, the UN would leave no stone unturned in ensuring a successful poll.
Meanwhile, the Director Defence Information Brig Gen Chris Olukolade said has in text message that Nigeria has almost 200 personnel in Guinea Bissau and their task is mainly in the security sector reform and protection of govt facilities in that country.