President Goodluck Jonathan will arrive New York on Sunday, September 21, to contend with what looks like one of his busiest UN schedules with five bilateral meetings and a strident campaign for Nigeria’s admission to the Security Council as a non-permanent member.
Earlier in the week, Nigeria’s Ambassador to the United States, Professor Ade Adefuye, had hinted that the president would be hosting a select audience of distinguished Nigerians at an interactive session for USA-based Nigerian professionals and other investors at the Grand Ball Room of the prestigious Plaza Hotel located at 770 Fifth Avenue, New York.
Briefing the press, Mr. Bosa, a senior minister in-charge of the Fourth Committee for UNGA68, who represented Nigeria’s Permanent Representative to the UN, Professor Joy Ogwu, said the five bilateral meetings would be with the European Union, Slovania, Sri Lanka, Lebanon and Trinidad and Tobago, whose heads of government and Jonathan would be meeting across different schedules from agriculture, to infrastructure, power and solid minerals.
The president, who is also billed to meet US’ President Barack Obama on a yet-to-be-specified date and time between Monday and Tuesday, will address the General Assembly of the United Nations at 12 noon Monday, September 23.
In his entourage will be the First Lady, Patience Jonathan, who has also lined up a number of activities for herself, the acting Minister of Foreign Affairs, Professor Viola Onwuliri, and other ministers; but Bosa did not indicate the number of governors who may be on the entourage.
Bosa said Nigeria was hopeful that the campaign for a non-permanent seat at the Security Council was going to yield fruit with the African Union (AU) and Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) giving their nod.
But he made an exception, Gambia, which he said is trying to split Nigeria’s votes, while the Central African Republic on whose ticket Chad Republic is campaigning is no issue.
According to Bosa, this notwithstanding, the opposition of those who are not giving the country their votes on account of its withdrawal of Nigeria’s troops from Mali, saying Nigeria’s domestic and foreign policies as well as its democracy, eminently qualify her for the fight to gain a non-permanent seat at the Security Council.