President Bola Tinubu has championed the need for Africa to surmount foreign exploitation to attain prosperity through democratic ideals.
He stated this in his inaugural address at the United Nations General Assembly on Wednesday.
The President spoke on the theme ‘Rebuilding Trust and Reigniting Global Solidarity: Accelerating Action on the 2030 Agenda and Its Sustainable Development Goals Towards Peace, Prosperity, Progress, and Sustainability for All’.
“As for Africa, we seek to be neither appendage nor patron. We do not wish to replace old shackles with new ones.”.
He addressed other heads of state hours after Joe Biden of the United States and Volodymyr Zelensky of Ukraine gave comparable speeches.
Tinubu stated that many proclamations have been made, “yet our troubles remain close at hand”.
In addition to pointing out that poor governance has hampered Africa, Tinubu lamented the heavy toll that unfulfilled promises, unequal treatment, and open foreign exploitation have taken on Africans’ capacity to advance.
“Given this long history, if this year’s theme is to mean anything at all, it must mean something special and particular to Africa,” he added.
“Today and for several decades, Africa has been asking for the same level of political commitment and devotion of resource that described the Marshall Plan,” he said.
“We realize that underlying conditions and causes of the economic challenges facing today’s Africa are significantly different from those of post-war Europe.”
The growth of Africa, in Tinubu’s opinion, must be prioritized by international organizations, other countries, and their private sector operators – not just because it benefits Africa, but also because it serves their interests.
The President claimed that because of long-standing internal and external issues, the economic structures of Nigeria and Africa have been skewed in a way that prevents growth, industrial expansion, the creation of jobs, and the equitable distribution of wealth.
“If Nigeria is to fulfil its duty to its people and the rest of Africa, we must create jobs and the belief in a better future for our people. We must also lead by example,” he said.
“To foster economic growth and investor confidence in Nigeria, I removed the costly and corrupt fuel subsidy while also discarding a noxious exchange rate system in my first days in office. Other growth and job-oriented reforms are in the wings.”