Omololu Ogunmade in Abuja
Equatorial Guinea President, Theodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo, on Tuesday visited President Muhammadu Buhari in the State House in Abuja where he advocated dialogue as the solution to the myriad of crises plaguing various countries in West African sub-region.
Addressing journalists at the end of the meeting, Mbasogo said he had opted to visit Buhari to know about the state of his health in view of the health crisis he went through for the better of last year.
Mbasogo who said his visit to Buhari was also in line with a maxim that when a fellow person is down, it is the responsibility of persons around him to seek his wellbeing, said he was glad to see the president looking hail and healthy,
The president of the tiny West African country also said he congratulated Buhari in the meeting over his giant strides in the fight against Boko Haram, which he said had caused a great havoc which had spread to some other West African countries including Chad and Cameroun.
According to him, through Buhari’s committed fight against Boko Haram, the insurgent group is almost eliminated but for pockets of attacks still being carried out by the insurgents.
“One of the salient issues in the meeting was that l congratulated our dear brother for the great fight against Boko Haram. We realised that Boko Haram had caused a great havoc that had been carried all over the sub-region including Chad and Cameroon. He is doing a great job. He’s almost eradicating the menace of Boko Haram apart from pockets of attacks here and there,” he said.
Mbasogo who spoke in Spanish, aided by an interpreter, said the meeting also discussed security concerns in the neighbouring West African countries, added that he and Buhari observed the need to work together with a view to securing a common ground for development and cooperation to achieve desired goals.
The president who also narrated how his country had been a victim of varying security crises orchestrated by some terrorists from Chad and Sudan in collaboration with a group of deviants from France, disclosed that his decision to promptly reach out to Cameroon helped to put the situation under control.
Narrating how the country became a victim of the first coup d’etat in 2004, Mbasogo said through the cooperation of neighbouring countries, the coup plotters were apprehended and imprisoned for several years until the government opted to pardon and free them.
Answering questions from journalists on the plan of West African leaders on the crisis which broke out in Southern Cameroon and resulted in the influx of refugees into Nigeria, Mbasogo said there is no country without its own peculiar crisis.
According to him, it only behoves on parties concerned to put heads together and embrace dialogue as the platform for solution to the crisis.
“Cameroon is a big nation whose crisis requires the concern of all forces. There is no nation without its own crisis. What is required is to seek solution through dialogue and use it to find a common axis. Those seeking refuge in other lands need to sit down together and find solution through dialogue. It is only through that, they can find solution to the crisis,” he said.
On the challenge of piracy in the Gulf of Guinea, Mbasogo who said the pirates were destroying and sabotaging Nigeria’s development effort in the area, also advocated dialogue as solution to the crisis.
“On piracy in the Gulf of Guinea, the pirates are destroying and sabotaging the property of Nigeria. The government of Nigeria cannot develop the area. What is warming therefore is to expect the government of Nigeria to bring the parties to dialogue for a solution to the crisis.
“In Equatorial Guinea, we feel concerned. We all need to put our hands on deck to ensure that there is security in all regions. We have to develop our nations and we can only do so under peace and harmony,” he added.