By Chioma Iruke
US Secretary of State, Antony Bilnken has arrived Nigeria amid calls for a rethink of the US relationship with Africa’s most populous which were severed by persistent unrest and human rights concerns.
The top US diplomat who is on his first trip to sub-Saharan Africa is looking to champion President Joe Biden’s key priorities of promoting democracy and fighting both climate change and the Covid-19 pandemic.
Senator Bob Menendez, a member of Biden’s Democratic Party who chairs the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, at a hearing with Blinken called for a “fundamental rethink of the framework of our overall engagement” with Nigeria.
Congressional objections have held up the sale of 12 US Cobra attack helicopters to Nigeria amid calls to probe whether the military is doing enough to prevent civilian deaths as it battles the two-decade Boko Haram jihadist insurgency as well as the recent scandal that surrounds the alleged killing of protesters late last year.