By Senator Iroegbu
Abuja — The government of France has authorised €500,000 fund to aid humanitarian efforts in the insurgency-ravaged North-eastern Nigeria.
The Press Officer, French Embassy in Abuja, Ms. Damilola Ayodeji, disclosed that the funding contract was given to two French organisations engaged in humanitarian activities in the conflict zones.
Ayodeji said the French government, through the French Embassy in Nigeria, was expressing its commitment to contributing to humanitarian efforts that would lead to the continual rehabilitation and restoration of the north-eastern region, which has suffered greatly from the insurgency of the terrorist group, Boko Haram.
She stated: “Recently, Guillaume Audren de Kerdrel, First Counsellor of the French Embassy in Abuja, received the representatives of Alima and Première Urgence Internationale (PUI), which are French humanitarian organisations active in the providing aid in north-east region of Nigeria.
“A funding contract amounting to a total of €500,000 was signed between the French Embassy and the representatives of the two organisations to support their humanitarian aid work in the region.”
According to her, the two projects that the said amount would cater for aim to improve medical care for children suffering from malnutrition in the newly accessible area: Kukawa Local Government Area in Borno state; and improve the food security of vulnerable populations in Maiduguri.
Meanwhile, ahead of President Donald Trump’s meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, the government of South Korea has sought the support of Nigeria in its ongoing efforts to reach a peaceful accord with her northern neighbour.
The Ambassador of Korea to Nigeria, Lee In-Tae made the call in Abuja during a recent briefing on the aftermath of the Inter-Korean Summit.
In-Tae noted that Nigeria is respected in global affairs and can provide leadership for Africa to support the peace processes in the volatile Korean Peninsula. According to him, globalisation has made it paramount that a peaceful Korea would benefit Nigeria in particular and Africa in general.
He said: “The international community has shown welcome and support to this historic summit. 71 countries have announced written support to the achievements of the Inter-Korean Summit, including the US, Russia and Japan. South African President himself issued a statement as well as Egypt and Sudan.”
In-Tae also commended Nigeria’s Ambassador to Korea, Mr. Amin Dalhatu, for issuing a congratulatory message of support to the Summit.
“As the leader of Africa continent and beyond, I look forward to seeing Nigerian government’s support soon. Nigeria is a leader not only in Africa but has international influence and we seek this leverage to build the peace initiative,” he said.
Speaking on the historic summit, In-Tae said President Jae-in Moon of South Korea and Chairman Jong-un Kim of North Korea shared the firm commitment to bring a swift end to the Cold War relic of long division and confrontation, and move towards a new era of national conciliation, peace and prosperity.
In order to institutionalise the Inter-Korean relations, he said the two Koreas would open permanent liaison offices in Gaeseong, a city in the middle of the Korean Peninsula.
“I expect more inter-Korean events to take place during the meaningful days for both Koreas such as the Liberation Day in August 15 and October 4,” he said.
The Korea Ambassador also noted that the recent summit was the first stage in the long process to reunification of the two Koreas into a single country.