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Commonwealth countries to promote peace, democracy

Students acting the role of President Muhammadu Buhari (middle) and his wife Aisha Buhari at the Commonwealth Day Celebration on Monday in Abuja

Nigeria has called on her peers in the Commonwealth of Nations to strive toward the promotion of tolerance and peaceful coexistence.

Minister of Education Adamu Adamu made the remark at the Commonwealth Day Celebration on Monday in Abuja. He said as members celebrate, they should connect to the underlying aspirations of the Commonwealth which was meant to “promote peace, democracy and development.”

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Mr Adamu also called on citizens to work with the government to promote good governance, national integration, mutual tolerance and respect, peaceful co-existence and the advancement of Nigeria’s economic growth and development.

The minister stated that Nigeria was at the forefront of the efforts to empower women, youth and marginalised communities “through policies and programmes that encourage inclusive education, stimulate participation in economic activities, move people out of poverty through investments across agricultural value chains, exploring the bountiful opportunities offered by ICT and creating an enabling environment for small business, innovation and entrepreneurship to flourish.”

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In her message, Head of the Commonwealth and Queen of the United Kingdom, Her Majesty, Elizabeth II, read by UK’s Deputy High Commissioner to Nigeria, Harriet Thompson, said the day had a special significance this year as nations marked the 70th anniversary of the London Declaration, when nations of the Commonwealth agreed to move forward together as free and equal members.

She said the vision and sense of connection that inspired the signatories has stood the test of time, and that the Commonwealth continued to grow, adapting to address contemporary needs.

The queen said “We are able to look to the future with greater confidence and optimism as a result of the links that we share, and thanks to the networks of cooperation and mutual support to which we contribute, and on which we draw.

“With enduring commitment through times of great change, successive generations have demonstrated that whilst the goodwill for which the Commonwealth is renowned may be intangible, its impact is very real.”

Minister of Foreign Affairs Geoffrey Onyeama said Nigeria had been in the front position in ensuring that the Commonwealth was transformed and made more relevant in addressing challenges such as those facing the youth.

He said Nigeria had earlier advocated for free movement of people among member nations.

 


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