We’ll aggressively protect, defend law-abiding Nigerians in diaspora — Buhari

President Muhammadu Buhari on Thursday in Madrid, said the Federal Government would aggressively protect and defend the interests of law-abiding citizens in the diaspora.

Buhari gave the assurance when he met with Nigerians living in Spain on the sidelines of his three-day state visit.

According to a statement signed by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, the diaspora team which met with Buhari included President of the association, John Bosco, his deputy, Richard Omoregbe, Super Eagles player who plies his trade with Leganes FC, Madrid, Kenneth Omeruo, a football agent, Obinna Okafor, a student of Aviation, Mohammed Bashir, a student of Global Affairs, Segun Adedoyin, and businessman, Bright Omorodion.

The statement was titled ‘We’ll continue to defend interests of all our law-abiding citizens abroad, president Buhari assures Nigerians living in Spain.’

President Buhari told the Nigerians, whom he described as ambassadors of the country in Spain, “Many of you are here for different reasons, some for a fulfilling career in sports, especially in football from where you earn respectable incomes to sustain yourselves as well as maintain your extended families in Nigeria including investments back home.

“Some of you are engaged in other businesses that have enhanced your socio-economic status, both here and at home. More importantly, through your commitment to your various callings, you have enhanced the name and image of our country, thereby earning Nigeria’s respect in Spain.

“I have also been informed of how law-abiding you are here in Spain. I wish to encourage you to continue to be role models for our youth back home as well as sustain the image of being excellent Ambassadors of Nigeria in Spain and live peacefully in the various communities in which you reside here.”

 Explaining why he established the Nigerians in Diaspora Commission, the President said: “As I have always done whenever I am abroad, I wish to reassure all of you in Spain of the determination of the Federal Government of Nigeria to continue to remain engaged with our compatriots in the diaspora, for more purposeful partnerships that impact our country and people.

“It is in the quest for actualising this objective that I established the Diaspora Commission to give focus to the management of this partnership that leads to a win-win situation for Nigeria, at home and abroad.”

He noted that the conduct of Nigerians abroad is crucial as it defines their roles as Ambassadors and image promoters of the country.

Buhari also urged them to give back to their homes in the form of monetary and non-monetary investments.

“As you perform this responsibility, I encourage you to embrace purposeful investments back home. Such assets can be financial or through your talents and skills, which can help mould and develop our youths.

“On the part of the Federal Government, Nigeria will continue to aggressively protect and defend the interests of all Nigerians abroad, especially the law-abiding compatriots,” he assured.

Senior government officials with the President at the event include NiDCoM Chief, Dabiri-Erewa, Ministers of Foreign Affairs Geoffrey Onyeama, Youth and Sports, Sunday Dare, Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, Nigeria’s Ambassador to Spain, Ademola Seriki, and Special Assistant to the President on Sports, Daniel Amokachie.

Super Eagles player Kenneth Omeruo presented President Buhari with a football and jersey in appreciation of the Nigerian leader’s support for sports, primarily the Super Eagles.