Atiku condemns critics, defends Buhari’s economic diplomacy


Bagudu, who reacted to the recent trips of the president to Japan, Russia and Saudi Arabia, frowned at critics of the trips, saying they were being unfair to the president and Nigerians who would eventually be the direct beneficiaries of such economic diplomacy.

He, particularly, described the president’s trip to Saudi Arabia, where he participated in the Future Investment Initiative in Riyadh, as a very successful outing for Nigeria.

He said: “It is an excellent outing for Mr President, President Muhammadu Buhari and we are honored to be part of his entourage to the conference which is tagged; Future Investment Initiative (FII) organized by the Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia, which is their Sovereign Wealth Fund equivalent to Nigeria’s Sovereign Fund, only that whereas ours is under three billion dollars theirs is in excess of 400 billion dollars.

“Mr President was invited by King Salman bin Abdulaziz, Custodian of the two whole Mosques, and that shows the respect with which Mr President is treated around the world and the honours he brings to Nigeria.

“Mr President in addition to participating in the summit, was also hosted by King Salman ibn Abdulaziz and he was visited by the Crown Prince, Muhammed ibn Salman, who showed unprecedented respect for Mr President, because rather than Mr President visiting him he decided to visit Mr President and agreed to invest in Nigeria.

“So, this is a very, very successful outing for Nigeria and it is consistent with our call for Mr President to be more active in economic diplomacy.

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