President Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday praised the chairman of the Presidential Council of Libya, Mohammed Younis Menfi for finding time to personally attend the extraordinary summit of heads of state and government of the Lake Chad Basin Commission (LCBC) held at Transcorp Hilton, Abuja, adding that declaring that a secured Libya would rub-off positively on the security of Nigeria.
The Libyan leader and his entourage arrived at the forecourt of the presidential villa around 10 am and were received by Buhari.
Cabinet members, including Geoffrey Onyeama, minister of foreign affairs, joined the president at the forecourt of the villa as well as some presidential aides.
According to a statement issued by Femi Adesina, presidential spokesman, Buhari said a stable or unstable Libya has implications for countries in the Lake Chad Basin area, including Nigeria.
“Republics of Chad, and Niger, have extensive borders with Libya, and they are our immediate neighbours. Whatever affects them affects us. The stability or instability of Libya will directly affect us,” the president said.
He said the security of Nigeria was number one priority to him, noting that “unless a country or institution is secured, there’s no way you can efficiently manage it”.
Buhari said he was happy that the chairman of the Presidential Council of Libya could personally attend the summit of Lake Chad Basin Commission to discuss the situation in Chad, and the implications for security in neighbouring countries.
Menfi said Libya was fast evolving, “and we now have one government, active on the ground. We are expelling the mercenaries, and unifying the instructions”.
He said democratic elections would be held in due course, adding that the historical relationship between his country and Nigeria in the areas of oil and agriculture meant that one country could not ignore the other.
“We aspire for joint cooperation, and reactivation of previous agreements,” Menfi said.