From Bello Wakili

President Muhammadu Buhari has called for joint international efforts to tackle menace of COVID-19, with spillovers into dwindling national economies that would require a global framework to ameliorate burden of struggling citizens, and re-ignite growth.

The President spoke at a ceremony to receive Letters of Credence from Ambassadors of Republic of Bulgaria, Mr Yanko Yordanou, People’s Republic of China, Mr Cui Jianchun, High Commissioner of Islamic Republic of Pakistan, Mr Muhammad Tayyab Azan, Ambassadors of Republic of Turkey, Mr Hidayet Bayraktar and Ukraine, Valerii Kirdoda, at the State House.

He called on them to promote their respective national values and interests through their countries’ foreign policy on Nigeria

President Buhari assured that Federal Republic of Nigeria would engage them as the country strive to relate through effective cooperation and collaboration to enhance collective interests.

He reminded them that the pre-COVID-19 era was already faced with the challenge of attaining sustainable development, Some countries were even faced with additional challenges like securing their territorial integrity against violent non-state actors.

The President stated that The unprecedented crisis brought by the COVID-19 pandemic has now caused far more serious setbacks to their quests for sustainable development; hence the need for international cooperation and collaboration to fight the disease, as no country is immune from its devastating effects on lives and livelihoods.

He noted the need for greater unity of purpose and concerted efforts to address common challenges such as climate change, terrorism, insurgency, population growth, highlighting their catastrophic impacts and why the challenges cannot be underestimated.

The President said bilateral relations between Nigeria and each of the countries were most cordial, adding that they still need to enhance these fraternal ties between nations.

He welcomed the Ambassadors to Nigeria, urging them to build on the successes of their predecessors, while assuring government would continue to support their mission in Nigeria.

President Buhari also implored the ambassadors to ensure accurate reports on Nigeria in their assessments to home governments, adding: “that way we can achieve greater understanding between our countries.’’

Speaking on behalf of the envoys, Ambassador of Bulgaria extended deep gratitude and appreciation for the reception on arrival in the country and State House, bringing the goodwill of the Heads of State.

Yordanou expressed the desire of the countries to continue working with Nigeria, assuring that the partnerships at various levels will be of progress and prosperity.