The Federal Government has described its relationship with Switzerland in the last 10 years as impactful, unique and exemplary.
The Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development Sadiya Umar Farouq made this known at a Joint Event to mark the 10th Anniversary of the Nigerian-Swiss Migration Partnership in Abuja on Tuesday.
Umar Farouq who was represented by the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry Bashir Nura Alkali said the decade long alliance has been a success.
”For us in Nigeria, it is a celebration of success. I must state that Nigeria believes in strategic collaboration and partnership and has engaged and entered into bilateral and multilateral partnership both intra and intercontinental. In all these, the Nigeria/Switzerland bilateral partnership is outstanding and enjoys a unique kind of strategic relationship based on mutual trust and respect for each other. Permit me to state that our partnership with the Swiss in all its ramifications is often used as a reference point in our diplomatic engagements with other nations”.
The Minister explained that the Nigeria-Swiss Bilateral Partnership on Migration conducted under the Joint Technical Committee (JTC) and signed in 2011 has proven to be a model of diplomatic pragmatism on issues of common interest especially migration.
In her remark, the Head of Federal Department of Justice and Police
Switzerland, Karin Keller-Stutter praised the resilience and positivity of the Nigerian government in ongoing efforts of the various branches of migration management, in dealing with humanitarian tragedies as well as the fight against extremism.
“It is this positivity and resilience that nurtured the foundation of our Migration Partnership which has become a cornerstone of our bilateral relations.
“Over the past decade, Switzerland and Nigeria have implemented more than 50 projects in areas such as migration management, preventing irregular migration, combatting human trafficking, facilitating return and reintegration or enabling sustainable labor migration.
Furthermore, the Migration Partnership has improved and facilitated direct technical discussions between our State Secretariat for Migration and the Nigerian Immigration Service.
We have also increased police cooperation between our Federal Police and the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons. These dialogues are crucial components of the successful implementation of the partnership”.
The Vice Chancellor, Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka, Prof Charles O. Esimone congratulated the Federal Government and Switzerland on their 10 year pact and enumerated the university’s prompt response in sensitizing its students on migration.
“First, we hosted a Sensitization on the dangers of irregular migration jointly organized with NCFRMI and Civil Society Organization Network for Migration and Development. We launched Postgraduate Programs on Migration Studies and established a Centre for Migration Studies, the first in the Nigerian University System”.
The official brochure ‘10 years Migration Partnership between Nigeria and Switzerland’ was officially launched as well as a ceremony to launch the ‘Blue Bus Project’ implemented by NAPTIP, NDLEA and IOM. The Blue Bus project is a traveling awareness-raising exhibition of human trafficking.
NNEKA IKEM ANIBEZE