Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday, has urged the United States to reconsider relocating US Africa Command (AFRICOM) from Stuttgart, Germany, to Africa, nearer the Theatre of Operation, admonishing the international community to support Nigeria and the sub-region in tackling growing security challenges to avoid spillovers.
In a virtual meeting with the US Secretary of State, Anthony Blinken on Tuesday, President Muhammadu Buhari urged U.S. Africa Command (AFRICOM), which partners with countries to counter transnational threats, should be relocated to Africa to strengthen ongoing efforts to check the security situation with likely effect on other nations.
Speaking a week after the death of the longtime president of Chad, Idriss Deby, in a battle against rebels. Deby who was an important Western ally in the fight against Islamist militants and under him Chadian soldiers formed a key component of a multinational force fighting Boko Haram and its offshoot, which has pledged allegiance to Islamic State.
According to a statement issued by the presidency, Buhari said;
“The security challenges in Nigeria remained of great concern to us and impacted more negatively by existing complex negative pressures in the Sahel, Central and West Africa, as well as the Lake Chad Region.
“Compounded as the situation remains, Nigeria and her security forces remain firmly committed to containing them and addressing their root causes. The support of essential and strategic partners like the United States cannot be overstated as the consequences of insecurity will affect all nations hence the imperative for concerted cooperation and collaboration of all countries to overcome these challenges.
“In this connection, and considering the growing security challenges in West and Central Africa, Gulf of Guinea, Lake Chad region and the Sahel, weighing heavily on Africa, it underscores the need for the United States to consider relocating AFRICOM Headquarters from Stuttgart, Germany to Africa and near the Theatre of Operation,’’.
AFRICOM did not immediately respond to a request for a comment.