President Muhammadu Buhari says the Federal Government holds Nigerians in the Diaspora in high esteem due to their immense contributions to national development.
Buhari made this known on Monday at the National Diaspora Day 2022 celebration in Abuja.
Equally important, the president was represented by the Chief of Staff (CoS), Prof. Ibrahim Gambari,
The National Diaspora Day is organised by the Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NiDCOM), with the theme; “Diaspora Engagement in a Globally Challenging Time’’.
Specifically, the day is celebrated on July 25 annually.
Buhari said that the celebration was an opportunity to address over 17 million Nigerians in the Diaspora on the great occasion set aside to celebrate Nigeria’s best in the world.
“This celebration is in recognition of your contributions to national development and networking them to ministries; departments, agencies of government, and states diaspora focal point officers and civil society organisations in Nigeria.
“Let me reiterate that our government has held and will continue to hold our citizens in the Diaspora in the highest esteem and this is evidenced by the following.
“The passage of the Nigerians in the Diaspora Commission Establishment Act in 2017; the establishment and kick-off of the commission in 2019, approval and abduction of the National Diaspora policy 2021 and presentation of the compendium of the ‘+ 600 Diaspora Icons at 60’, which remains a historic record of the worth of our compatriot globally.
“This auspicious celebration of our National Diaspora Day in 2022 was birthed in the National Diaspora Policy 2021; which prescribed July 25, as a day to celebrate Nigerians in the Diaspora.”
Meanwhile, Buhari said this year’s theme; Diaspora Engagement in a Globally Challenging Time for National Development; “is apt, considering our experiences with the COVID-19 pandemic and the ongoing Russian/Ukraine war and the general insecurity; which we are experiencing not only in Nigeria but across the globe”.
ALSO READ: Just in! Nigerian Military search for Captain, other soldiers, abducted by terrorists in Abuja
Correspondingly, Amb. Zubairu Dada, the Minister of State, Ministry of Foreign Affairs said that the Diaspora Day celebration was timely; even as the world stepped out from the painful devastation of the COVID-19 Pandemic.
“I am most impressed that you all took time out to participate in this event; in spite of the distances most of you have to cover and the differences in the time zones.
“This simply testifies to your resilience as Nigerians and your commitment to national unity and its development. I cannot forget to thank NiDCOM, the Directorate of Cooperation in Africa, and Nigerians in Diaspora Organisation worldwide.”
Also mentioned as having contributed one way or the other to the successful organisation and realisation of this event are Zumuta Association USA Inc. Central Association of Nigerians in the United Kingdom amongst others.
Earlier, Mrs Abike Dabiri-Erewa, NiDCOM Chairman/CEO, said that the celebration was important ; adding that the commission celebrated three years in May, giving credence to the constructive engagement and participation of those in the Diaspora.
Consequently, she commended the cooperation of the Nigerians in Diaspora, “which is the essence of its establishment”.