The new High Commissioner of the United Kingdom, Richard Montgomery, visited President Muhammadu Buhari at the Presidential Villa in Abuja on Thursday.
Naija News reports that Montgomery, who takes over from Catriona Laing after serving for four years, presented his letter of credence to the President during the visit.
In a statement by his spokesman, Garba Shehu, President Buhari advised the UK official to always respect the country’s traditional rulers and institutions, adding that diplomatic relations, spanning many years, have been sustained on mutual respect for cultures.
The President told the British diplomat that a good understanding of cultural differences and respect for institutions paved the way for most of the successes of the UK.
He said Nigeria’s relationship with the two countries would be further consolidated with their consideration of local cultures, traditional rulers, and institutions.
Buhari revealed that previous diplomats had established relations with some revered monarchs such as the Sultan of Sokoto, Emir of Kano, Shehu of Borno, and Emir of Ilorin.
He said: “I like the way our traditional rulers and institutions are being respected in spite of the changing times, education, and rising materialism.
“There is a lot to learn from our cultures and the traditional institutions are the custodians, and they should be respected by all. All courtesy would be extended to you to make your stay in Nigeria memorable.”
In his remarks, Montgomery said the UK has always held Nigeria and its cultural institutions in high esteem, adding that both countries have had a long, productive partnership on security, economy, and other issues.
The diplomat also extended the best wishes of King Charles III as Nigeria prepares for the handover ceremony on May 29.
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