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Israel to deepen relations with Nigeria

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By Abraham Adekunle

Ambassador to Nigeria say Israel excited to work with President-elect Tinubu.

After the conclusion of the 2023 general elections, where Senator Bola Ahmed Tinubu was declared president-elect, different government officials from developed countries have come out to congratulate him. On March 1, 2023, the prime minister of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu, congratulated Tinubu on his election as president. “I look forward to working together to promote and strengthen the bilateral relations between Israel and Nigeria,” he posted on Twitter. This is to show a renewed commitment to partnership with Nigeria and the incoming administration.

Ambassador of the country to Nigeria, Michael Freeman, has assured that his country would continue to deepen its bilateral relations with Nigeria especially in advancing entrepreneurial innovations and technologies. The ambassador gave this assurance in Abuja on May 16, 2023 during a ceremony marking the 75th independence anniversary of the country’s statehood. This event organized by the Israeli embassy to commemorate the birth of the modern state of Israel and democracy since the official declaration by Ben Gurion, the country’s first Prime Minister on May 14, 1948.

The Middle Eastern country is excited to work with new president-elect.

Also in his address, ambassador Freeman noted that the Jewish nation had built modern technology and innovation in agriculture, cyber, health, education, homeland security and many more that are top rated globally since their independence. “We are excited to work with the president-elect, Senator Bola Tinubu, in his administration push to advance these issues and many more,” he said. He reiterated that the two countries had worked together for 60 years in many different fields. In recent years, Innovation Fellowship for Aspiring Inventors and Researchers (I-FAIR) has been flagship of their program.

He said that the first two editions of the program for Nigerian entrepreneurs provided young Nigerians mentorship and tools needed to take their ideas from theories to practical. He noted that many I-FAIR graduates now have various businesses with fellow Nigerians contributing to economic growth of this country. As a result, “we shall hold our first technology investment conference in Abuja, to bring together our technology experts from both countries” at the end of the year.

Initiatives in Agro-based tech to ensure brighter future for the youth.

Freeman described his country as a world-leading country in Agro-based technology and water management through innovative approach in climate change. The Middle Eastern country will hold its maiden agriculture, water and climate change technology conference in 2024. The diplomat assured Nigeria that such initiatives through commitment and deeper bilateral relations with the country would ensure a brighter future for the young and even unborn generation. Since this announcements, several public office holders and government officials in Nigeria have started reacting to the message of the ambassador.

In a separate interview at the event, Minister of Women Affairs, Pauline Tallen, applauded Freeman’s call on the need for the two countries to deepen their ties. According to her, by deepening our diplomatic relations with Israel, Nigeria stands to gain a lot as Nigeria is blessed with many natural resources, in tourism, agriculture and many others. She said that as long as Nigeria instills the discipline that the country does in whatever they do, we will be better off.

Senator says to achieve Israel feat, Nigeria must tackle corruption.

Another stakeholder in the country, Senator Elisha Abbo, who represents Adamawa North senatorial district in the House of Assembly, emphasized that Nigeria needs to tackle corruption to achieve any meaningful growth. “You cannot comprehend the achievements of Israel in one day, in terms of agricultural revolution, weapons, security and many things,” he said. He said that Nigeria has a lot to learn from them as regards what a nation must do to fight corruption because Nigeria’s biggest enemy today is corruption.

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