The President of France Emmanuel Macron has invited President Muhammadu Buhari to the Africa-France summit scheduled for Bordeaux, France, in June 2020.
This development was made public by secretary general of the summit Stephanie Rivoal, when she visited minister of foreign affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama, in Abuja on Tuesday.
Speaking about the summit with the theme: “sustainable cities” she said it is aimed at helping African countries seek ways of resolving challenges within the region.
Acknowledging the importance of President Buhari, she said, his presence will be well appreciated, considering the position of Nigeria on the African continent.
On the other personalities and areas of development to look into, Rivoal said that the summit will involve African leaders, as well as other experts and city developers who check and survey occurrences in different African states and derive solutions for the problems identified.
She said, “I will appreciate it if President Buhari will come with a delegation of people involved in city development,”
“Stakeholders will be there to look at what is the best for the people that live in those cities. Besides, there will be concrete commitments by stakeholders and this will be followed up at the end of the summit.”
Explaining further, she said the choice of Bordeaux as against “the big city of Paris”, is to allow for practical understanding on issues regarding access to health, water, power, among others.
Speaking more on development, she stated that, deliberations would also be on how to make the rural areas more attractive to the people so as to reduce rural-urban migration.
In view of the advantages around the plan for the summit, Onyeama appreciated the invitation and said Nigeria would love to be part of a summit geared towards the development of the country and the African continent.
The foreign affairs minister speaking further on development said, “The challenges in improving quality of lives; to slow down and reverse the trend of urban-rural drift is something we are looking at and we hope to attain,”
“Building up the economy of rural cities is an excellent idea. We have to look at how to make rural cities friendly for the people.
“I am sure that Mr President will keep the date as it is something he will consider.”