The current security situation in Nigeria seems to be taking its toll on the country’s relationship with other nations. While the media had been awash with stories on Hilary Clinton’s visit to Africa with Nigeria as one of her ports of call, the United States Department of State on Monday removed Nigeria from the list of countries to be visited by America’s Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton.
According to a statement issued by the Department of State, “Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton will travel to Africa July 31 through August 10, 2012. During this trip, the Secretary will emphasize U.S. policy commitments outlined in the Presidential Policy Directive – to strengthen democratic institutions, spur economic growth, advance peace and security as well as promote opportunity and development for all citizens.
The Secretary’s first stop will be Senegal, where she will meet President Sall and other national leaders and deliver a speech applauding the resilience of Senegal’s democratic institutions and highlighting America’s approach to partnership.
Next, Secretary Clinton travels to South Sudan where she meets with President Kiir to reaffirm U.S. support and to encourage progress in negotiations with Sudan to reach agreement on issues related to security, oil and citizenship”.
It was also contained in the statement that while in Uganda, Secretary Clinton will meet with President Museveni to encourage the strengthening of democratic institutions and human rights, while also reinforcing Uganda as a key U.S. partner in promoting regional security, particularly in regard to Somalia and in regional efforts to counter the Lord’s Resistance Army, stressing that she will also highlight U.S. support in the fight against HIV/AIDS.
The statement went further that “the Secretary will then travel to Kenya where she plans to meet President Kibaki, Prime Minister Odinga, and other government officials to emphasize her support for transparent, credible, nonviolent national elections in 2013”.
On August 20th, Secretary Clinton is expected to meet with President Sheikh Sharif and other signatories to the Roadmap to End the Transition. Then she will move to Malawi where she will visit President Banda to discuss economic and political governance and reform.
The last country on her itinerary is South Africa where Secretary Clinton will pay her respects to ex-President Mandela, and also participate in the U.S.-South Africa Strategic Dialogue focusing on the partnership between the two countries in addressing issues of mutual concern and their shared challenges on the African and world stage.