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Buhari departs Abuja for Sochi, Russia

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President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday departed Abuja for Sochi, Russia to attend a three-day Russia-Africa Summit holding from Oct. 23 to Oct. 25.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that before leaving the presidential villa for onward journey to Sochi,  Buhari carried out some official engagements where he was briefed by some cabinet ministers.

NAN reports that the presidential aircraft conveying the president and some members of his entourage took off from the Presidential Wing of the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja (NAIA) at about 2.15 p.m.

The presidential aircraft is expected to arrive Sochi International Airport at about 22.30 p.m. (Local Time) with the temperature out at 22 degrees centigrade.

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An earlier statement by the President’s spokesman, Malam Garba Shehu, in Abuja on Sunday said the summit would focus on exploring and expanding opportunities in security, trade and investment, science and technology, and gas production.

During the summit, according to the statement, Buhari will meet with President Vladimir Putin of Russia to further strengthen relations between Nigeria and Russia.

Shehu said that the two leaders would hold bilateral talks on security, trade and investment, and building partnership that would enhance Nigeria’s huge gas potential following Russia’s remarkable success in gas exportation.

“The summit, which will be attended by African Heads of State will bring fresh perspectives on some global issues and challenges like nuclear technology, energy development, digital transformation, environment, technical security, mining and steel, education, agriculture, infrastructure and development strategies.

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“An African Business Forum, which will bring together African and Russian business leaders will be held during the event to enhance Russian investments in Africa and promote African business interest in the host country,’’ he said.

Those on the president’s entourage included governors Muhammad Yahaya of Gombe, Bello Matawalle of Zamfara and Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti state.

Others also on the trip are ministers of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama, Trade and Investment, Adeniyi Adebayo, Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Olamilekan Adegbite and Minister of State, Petroleum, Timipre Sylva.

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