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Niger, Benin Republic advocate collaboration with Nigeria to improve cross-border security

Niger, Benin Republic advocate collaboration with Nigeria to improve cross-border security
September 30
23:41 2021

Niger Republic and Republic of Benin have called for effective collaboration with Nigeria to end cross-border crimes in the three neighbouring countries.

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Assoumana Ahmadou, governor of Dosso state in Niger Republic, and Ky-Samah Bello, governor of Alibori state in Benin Republic, spoke on Thursday, in Birnin Kebbi, the Kebbi capital.

The governors spoke during a courtesy visit to Atiku Bagudu, governor of Kebbi.

They advocated for a collaboration with Nigeria to tackle cross-border banditry and other forms of crime.

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According to NAN, the courtesy visit was part of the activities lined up for the ongoing 2021 pastoralists week in the state.

“The main concern of our gathering here in Kebbi is to discuss issues affecting pastoralists,” Ahmadou said.

“Besides that, it is an opportunity for us to discuss other subjects like cross-border security, which is also another concern between us.

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“This is very important between our states, because we have the same reality and we are facing the same challenge. I have been leading the government and region of Dosso since four years ago, but this is the first opportunity for me to speak with you directly.

“This is the start of our direct communication in order to jointly manage and solve our main concern. I will recommend to the organisers of the week-long pastoralists event to replicate this kind of gathering, because it is very helpful.

“This is an opportunity for high-level authorities of neighbouring countries to gather and synergise in order to ease cooperation among our countries.”

On his part, Bello said the boundaries between the countries were created by colonial masters to divide Africa “in order to delay its integration, progress and development”.

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The governor was represented by Ayite Baglo, director, Benin Republic boundary commission.

“I used to qualify the borders as an artificial weapon that was strategically used by colonial masters to delay African development,” he said.

“Those boundaries were created artificially in order to divide Africa. Let me give an example. When you go to the border between Kamba and Malanberi, what is the difference? People are the same, they speak the same language with inter-marriages, but they are divided using three different flags.

“Currently, for instance, during our meeting, when Nigeria speaks English, we cannot follow and when we speak French, they too cannot understand. But when it comes to Hausa, everybody understands and follows; meaning those borders were created to divide us and delay our integration.”

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Responding, Bagudu appreciated the delegation for the visit.

Bagudu, who was represented by Suleiman Argungu, his chief of staff, expressed satisfaction that the delegation had confirmed that despite the division created by colonial masters, the countries still have similar areas of interests.

He also said there is a need for the three countries to encourage cross-border cooperation among communities.

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