👤 By Christian Smith
The British Prime Minister did not endorse the re-election of President Muhammadu Buhari during their meeting last month, the British High Commission in Nigeria has been forced to say.
Theresa May was in Abuja to hold a bilateral meeting with the Nigerian President on August 29, 2018.
The British Conservative leader spent less than two hours in the capital before hurriedly jetting out to Lagos, where she discussed issues of modern slavery.
Many saw Mrs May short visit in Abuja as a snub, but after the meeting, the Presidency went on to boast about it, saying that a queue of world leaders were requesting to meet President Buhari which was an indication of how special he was.
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“The entire world and world leaders are queuing up to meet President Muhammadu Buhari is an indication that there is something about President Buhari. There is something about the Nigeria he now leads that the world likes,” Garba Shehu stated in an interview granted days after the meeting with Theresa May and the German Chancellor, Angela Merkel.
But the British government through its High Commission in Nigeria has quickly denied giving any endorsement to President Buhari while speaking at a conference on Friday (September 14, 2018).
At the 2018 International Day of Democracy, with the theme: “Democracy under strain: solutions for a changing world,” Laura Beaufils, the British Deputy High Commissioner to Nigeria said: “It is important to stress that the recent visit of the Prime Minister, Theresa May, to Nigeria was not an endorsement of support for the president or any candidate in the election next year.”