Buhari leaves Makkah for 2-week private visit to UK

President Muhammadu Buhari on Saturday departed Makkah via Abdulaziz International Airport Jeddah for the United Kingdom after he successfully performed the Lesser Hajj.

The president reportedly left Makkah for Jeddah at about 1.30pm (local time) while his presidential aircraft took-off for London at exactly 3.05 pm.

Before performing the Umrah, President Buhari had attended a three-day Future Investment Initiative (FII) in Riyadh from Oct. 29 to Oct. 31 where he held bilateral talks with King Salman in Riyadh.

Both leaders committed to deeper partnership especially in the areas of oil and gas for the development of both countries.

On Thursday, the Saudi Crown Prince, Mohammed bin Salman, paid a courtesy visit to President Buhari at his hotel room at The Ritz Carlton.

At the event the prince called for the establishment of Nigeria-Saudi Council aimed at promoting investments and enhancing relations between both countries.

The Council would be made up of government officials and business leaders from both countries and the areas of focus are economic growth and development, investments in oil and non-oil sectors, and security cooperation.

“President Buhari and the Crown Prince agreed that the first assignment for the Council is to establish a legal and operational framework that will facilitate investments beneficial to both countries.

“The Council will be established in the next two months while meetings will be held twice every year,’’ Presidential spokesman Garba Shehu had said in a statement on Thursday.

President Buhari thanked the Crown Prince for the Kingdom’s interest in investing in Nigeria and the initiative to establish the Council which would form the foundation for a stronger Nigeria-Saudi relationship.

“Nigeria has a large population mainly made up of dynamic, young people and partnerships of this type will help them to be productive and prosperous,” he added.

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