Abuja (WorldStage Newsonline)-- African Union (AU) Chairman, President Boni Yayi of Benin Republic has reiterated his commitment toward the attainment of a reform in Security Council for Africa to get two permanent seats in the global organisation and declared his support for Nigeria as Africa’s representative in the UN Security Council.
Yayi spoke on Tuesday after a closed door meeting with President Goodluck Jonathan at the Presidential wing of the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport.
Jonathan met with the AU chairperson on his return from Kaduna where he had declared open the 2012 Air Expo.
Yayi who spoke through an interpreter said, “I have been talking with Ban Ki Moon the Secretary-General of the United Nation on the way we should conduct reform within the Security Council. I believe that it is time for Africa to get two seats, two permanent seats within the Security Council. When I am talking about two permanent seat I am talking about sub-Sahara Africa and one of the largest country in the Sub-Sahara is Nigeria, So Nigeria should get a permanent seat within the Security Council.’’
He also said that it was time for Africa to stop being a “spectator and onlooker’’ in global affairs; noting that he was in Nigeria to consult with Jonathan on what he is planning to put on the table at the G20 meeting in the coming week.
“The item on the agenda of the G20 is practically on Africa, so Africa needs to be there fully to talk peer to peer with all members of this Organisation,’’ he said.
Yayi also used the opportunity to clear the air on his emergence as the AU Chairman during the January Summit of the Union in Addis Ababa Ethiopia where it was speculated that Jonathan lost to him in a contest for the chairmanship of the Union.
Yayi, in his clarification said that he emerged as AU Chairman by selection and Jonathan facilitated his emergence and victory.
“If I am now the AU Chairperson he is one of those persons who selected me, I repeat, selected me as AU Chairperson today.
“I swear, that I will always come to him in whatever we are doing on the continent and on the bi-lateral level,’’ he said.
Yayi said he was also in the country to report to Jonathan on the meeting of the ad-hoc committee on the inconclusive election of AU Commission Chairperson.
“I congratulated him for all efforts he has been doing for Benin and the sub region and the good governance he is also conducting in Nigeria to address the internal problems.
“After that, in my capacity as Chairman of AU, I also tell him that Benin is by the side of Nigeria and as such any prosperity in Nigeria should be shared by Benin and vice versa.
“In as much as we share the same border, Benin is still enjoying from Nigeria in all areas. We also thank him because Nigeria did a lot in checkmating piracy in the Benin high seas. We conducted joint patrol on our high seas of the two countries and by now, pirates are already running away from our coast and we need to thank Nigeria for that.”
He thanked Jonathan for Nigeria’s contribution towards checkmating piracy in the high seas waterways of both countries.
Yayi said with the joint patrol conducted by both countries the activities of pirates had reduced to the barest minimum.
“Nigeria did a lot in checkmating piracy in the Benin high sea. I congratulated him for all efforts he has been doing for Benin and the sub region and the good governance he is also conducting in Nigeria to address the internal problems,’’ he said.