The Senior Presidential Advisor on Diaspora Affairs, Amb. Abbey Walusimbi has met and held bilateral talks with the Nigerian Consular General to New York, Lot Peter Egopija in a bid to foster combined efforts to build a strong diaspora community.
“President Museveni as a Pan-Africanist believes that as Africans we need to work together to create the platforms for greater interactions and engagement with African diasporas for the benefits of the African continent,” Walusimbi told his host during a meeting held at the Nigerian consulate in New York.
Walusimbi noted that the engagement was part of President Museveni’s goal of bringing together African brothers to mobilize, engage and encourage historical diasporas to contribute to the growth and development of the African continent.
He noted that the visit was also aimed at learning and understanding the methods and successes of the Nigerian Consulate in dealing with the country’s diasporas.
“My office is currently working to establish a strong relationship with other African countries in building the diaspora into a stronger force of economic growth and development,” he said.
Speaking in response, Egopija welcomed the move by Walusimbi and promised him all the necessary support towards achieving a common goal.
He also congratulated President Museveni upon his re-election as president of Uganda and commended him for the strong relationship he has with Nigeria as well as creating an environment that encourages Nigerians to invest as well as do business in Uganda.
He also tipped the presidential advisor on diaspora affairs on how to handle the Ugandans in the diaspora.
“I advise that you get to know your people, listen to them and see how they can contribute to the development agenda taken by President Museveni. As a way of talking to the diaspora, we have developed town hall meetings where we meet our diasporas to hear from them,” Egopija said.
“If you talk to them, you are not likely to go to war with them because it’s the absence of communication that brings strife. We are Africans and we should therefore be able to entertain divergent views.”
The meeting was also attended by Ralph Charles the Special Advisor to New York state Senate, James Sanders Jr, Dr. Nelson Aluya the President of Nigerian American Public Affairs Committee (NAPAC), and Olivia Nantongo from the Office of Senior Presidential Advisor on Diaspora Affairs, among others.