Saturday, November 28, 2015

Why President Buhari is Always Traveling Abroad

Garba Shehu,

image from
President Muhammadu Buhari came into office under the mantra of change. While Nigerians are yearning for change, you need someone who will set up the infrastructure, both at home and abroad for it. President Buhari is busy doing that.
The change is manifest in where he visits and what he does.
In the delegations accompanying him abroad, President Buhari has slashed the numbers, bringing them down to a tolerable or the bearable minimum.
He went to the United Nations General Assembly in September with an unbelievable 32 officials in his delegation. These included his cook, his doctor and luggage officer.
His predecessor in office went to the same meeting with 150 officials and family members the year before.
Wherever they are given government accommodation and feeding, members of President Buhari’s entourage receive reduced allowances, thereby saving the government some money.
In public diplomacy, experts say that it is better conducted through face-to-face interaction than through third parties. This is even more so at the level of heads of state. To do by it by proxy is to miss the effect of fostering strong interpersonal relations between leaders, by which nations benefit. ...
The visit by any president to another country is the highest act in international relations.
It sends out a message that that county is important to the visitor. ...
There is no reason to be angry with anyone criticizing President Buhari for traveling abroad. In politics, even if President Buhari were to bring with him a suitcase full of cash and a pot gold each time he returned from a trip, someone will criticize him, saying that the journey is wasteful. ...
So far, in fairness, the President has projected a large image of Nigeria and of himself which should be a matter of pride for all our citizens. Marketing of Brand Nigeria can never be more important than currently it is.

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