Ahead of the 2015 Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting which begins in Malta on Friday, President Muhammadu Buhari will later today, Thursday, leave Abuja for the island nation.
The Commonwealth is made up of Britain, Nigeria and 51 other countries that work together to pursue common goals and promote development, democracy, peace, security and good governance.
The Special Adviser to the President on (Media & Publicity), Femi Adesina, said in a statement on Wednesday that President Buhari and other Heads of State and Government who will be in Malta for this year’s summit are expected to deliberate on fresh Commonwealth initiatives on development and climate change with a view to adding greater value to ongoing global efforts in these areas.
The summit will see the emergence of a new Secretary-General of the Commonwealth, who will take over from the incumbent, Kamalesh Sharma, as well as feature the presentation of a progress report on the eradication of polio.
The Head of the Commonwealth, Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II, will formally declare the summit open and host a banquet in honour of President Buhari and other participating Heads of State and Government.
At the conclusion of the Summit on Sunday, the Nigerian leader will leave Malta for Paris where he will present Nigeria’s statement at the United Nations Climate Change Conference scheduled to open in the French capital on Monday, November 30.
While in Paris, he will join over 100 other world leaders at the Leaders Event on the opening day of the conference, which will be hosted by President Francois Hollande of France and the Secretary-General of the United Nations, Mr. Ban Ki Moon.
President Buhari will also participate in a summit of the Heads of State and Government of the Lake Chad Basin Commission and Benin Republic which has been scheduled to take place on December 2 in Paris on the sidelines of the United Nations Conference on Climate Change.
Deliberations at the Paris meeting of the Lake Chad Basin Commission and Benin Republic will focus mainly on the war against Boko Haram and other security issues of common interest to participating countries.
Accompanying President Buhari on the trip are the Ministers of Foreign Affairs and Environment, Mr. Geoffrey Onyeama and Mrs. Amina Mohammed respectively and the National Security Adviser, Maj.-Gen. Babagana Monguno (rtd.)