Buhari’s Invitation To US Africa Command Headquarters Will Bring Recolonisation – Shehu Sani
Former Senator representing Kaduna Central, Shehu Sani, has criticised President Muhammadu Buhari for asking the United States to relocate Africa Command from Germany to the troubled area.
The statement that was made available on his Twitter handle on Wednesday states:
"The President’s call for world powers military HQ on African soil is an open invitation for recolonisation of Africa. I’ts easier to tell and get them to come and when they come, it’s impossible to tell and get them to go out.
"Over six decades since independence, African countries should purposefully work together to confront & address their security challenges, while honorably seeking foreign technical assistance. The call for the US to relocate its @USAfricaCommand HQ to Africa is unconscionable."
He said with such a move, other foreign players will follow suit, leading to the military balkanisation of the continent.
"Once the US relocates their HQ to Africa, Russia, China, Iran, Saudia, Israel and co would follow suit with establishing their Command HQs, and then Africa will be militarily Balkanised; then we either become like Korea or like Syria."
During a virtual meeting with Anthony Blinken, US Secretary of State on Tuesday, President Buhari asked the United States to consider moving the headquarters of the US Africa Command (AFRICOM) from Germany to Africa.
According to the President, the request was based on the growing security challenges in the continent.
The late President Umaru Yar'Adua had announced that he would not allow Nigeria (or anywhere in West Africa) to host AFRICOM.
Some African countries including Libya and South Africa have also expressed concern about having the headquarters of AFRICOM on the continent.
AFRICOM, with headquarters in Stuttgart, Germany, is one of the 11 departments of defence combatant commands of the US which focuses on improving security in African countries.
The goal of the command is to better protect America's strategic interests in Africa and assist African countries with military training and conflict prevention.
The US established AFRICOM in 2007, but it became fully operational in 2008, with operations carried out in Niger Republic, Djibouti, Chad, among others.