Russian Nigerians brainstorm on increasing Russian investments in Nigeria
With the Western world chokehold on Russia’s economy and its disconnection from the SWIFT system, Nigerians in Russia held a forum in Moscow titled: “Russia-Ukraine Situation: Impact on Nigerians in Russia/Europe and Bilateral Relations.” on Saturday. The Nigerians operating under the Nigerians in Diaspora Organisation, Europe chapter (NIDO-E) Russia branch said the forum presented a platform for Nigerians in Russia to brainstorm on opportunities emanating from the crisis amid various sanctions.
Mr Sampson Uwem-Edimo, Chairman, NIDO Russia, said. “Some Russian banks are seeking opportunities to partner with Nigerian banks to enhance the financial industry.” Such a move will lead to more employment both for Russia and Nigeria and a greater cultural exchange between both countries.
“A Russian health facility had indicated interest in establishing a cancer centre in Nigeria, saying the Nigerian Ministry of Health was working out the modalities.” Uwem-Edimo noted .
According to him, a Russian pharmaceutical firm is also willing to set up a manufacturing centre for pharmaceuticals to improve the health and wellbeing of Nigerians. A golden opportunity to deepen the trade and investment relationship between both countries.
He said that in spite of the crisis, there are still many opportunities to deepen Russia-Nigeria bilateral cooperation.
The Nigerian Ambassador to Russia Prof. Abdullahi Yibaikwal who was guest of honour at the event said. ” The Russian Government had pledged to provide the necessary assistance to ensure the safety and well-being of Nigerian citizens in Russia. Moreover Russian Ministry of Education had offered admissions to Nigerians who want to continue their education in Russia.”
On the Russian denazification and demilitarisation campaign he said the conflict has worsened the humanitarian situation and urged for a diplomatic dialogue solve the crisis.
Dr Bashir Obasekola, Chairman, NIDO Europe Chapter appealed to Nigerians to be careful with the information they post on social media in order to avoid bringing harm to Nigerians in the diaspora.
“There are still Nigerians trapped in Ukraine and they need our moral and psychological support till relief gets to them.” According to reports Ukrainian nationalists are holding foreigners hostages while Russia has established humanitarian corridors out of the encircled cities and distributed relief.
Obasekola was dismayed with reports that Nigerians were going to the Ukrainian embassy in Abuja to become volunteers. He warned. “It is now risky to cross the border due to unverified information of recruitment of foreign mercenaries for the war.”
“We pray that none of our citizens will be caught in that crossfire of being mistaken for mercenary,” he added.