PORT OF SPAIN — Nigerian president Goodluck Ebele Azikiwe Jonathan and a 70-member delegation will be the Government’s specially invited guests for next week’s Emancipation celebrations.
At yesterday’s post-cabinet media briefing, acting Foreign Affairs Minister Suruj Rambachan announced the visit of the Nigerian team – from July 31 to August 2. Jonathan, 55, will be accompanied on the visit by his wife, Dame Patience Jonathan. The delegation will arrive at Piarco Airport at 5 pm next Tuesday.
Rambachan said Jonathan’s Emancipation visit – the Nigerian president’s first to T&T – comes as a result of talks Prime Minister Kamla Persad- Bissessar held with Jonathan during last year’s Commonwealth leaders’ conference in‚Australia.
Rambachan said T&T‚has increased ties with Nigeria on trade issues and had sent an energy delegation to Nigeria last year. On arrival on Tuesday, Jonathan will be given a welcome at Piarco by a military guard of honour and will be greeted by President George Maxwell Richards and Persad-Bissessar.
On August 1, Jonathan and his delegation will participate in the Emancipation Camboulay celebration parade. That day also, Jonathan will pay courtesy calls on President Richards and the Prime Minister.
During the visit with the PM, they will hold bilateral trade discussions on energy and other matters, including possible air links between Nigeria and T&T, in which Nigeria has expressed interest.
At 4 pm on August 1, the Nigerian team will visit the Emancipation Village at the Queen’s Park Savannah, Port-of-Spain, and will attend a state banquet hosted by the Prime Minister at the Diplomatic Centre in St Ann’s.
On August 2, the Nigerian visitors will head to the Pt Lisas Industrial Estate. (Guardian)