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Samoa agreement didn’t breach Nigerian laws–FG



Samoa agreement didn’t breach Nigerian laws--FG
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The federal government says the Samoa agreement was signed in the interest of the country without contravening any of the existing laws.

In a statement on Thursday, Muhammed Idris, minister of information, said the federal government signed the agreement on June 28 after extensive reviews and consultations.

The information minister said the review of the agreement was done by an inter-ministerial committee convened by the ministry of budget in collaboration with the ministries of foreign affairs and justice.

On Thursday, a report claimed that some clauses of the agreement allegedly compel underdeveloped and developing nations to support the agitations by lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) for recognition.

The report elicited mixed reactions, as some Nigerians criticised the federal government for signing the agreement.

However, the minister of information maintained that the federal government ensured that the agreement did not contravene the 1999 Constitution (as amended) and other extant laws.

He said there is an existing law in Nigeria that criminalises same-sex relationships.

“Nigeria signed the agreement on Friday 28 June 2024,” the minister said.

“It was ensured that none of the 103 articles and provisions of the agreement contravenes the 1999 constitution as amended, the laws of Nigeria, or other extant laws.

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“In addition, Nigeria’s endorsement was accompanied by a statement of declaration dated 26th June 2024, clarifying its understanding and context of the agreement within its jurisdiction to the effect that any provision that is inconsistent with the laws of Nigeria shall be invalid.

“It is instructive to note that there is an existing legislation against same-sex relationships in Nigeria enacted in 2014.

“It is necessary to assure Nigerians that the President Bola Tinubu Administration, being a rule-based government, will not enter into any international agreement that will be detrimental to the interests of the country and its citizens.

“The Samoa Agreement is nothing but a vital legal framework for cooperation between the OACPS and the European Union to promote sustainable development, fight climate change and its effects, generate investment opportunities, and foster collaboration among OACPS member states at the international stage.”

According to the European Council, the Samoa agreement is the overarching framework for European Union (EU) relations with African, Caribbean, and Pacific countries.

The agreement serves as a new legal framework for EU relations with 79 countries, including African, Caribbean, and Pacific countries.

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The agreement covers six priority areas, which are democracy and human rights; sustainable economic growth and development; climate change; human and social development; peace and security; and migration and mobility.

The agreement was officially signed on November 15, 2023, by the EU and its member states and Organisation of African, Caribbean, and Pacific States (OACPS) members in Samoa, a country in Oceania.

Nigeria did not sign the agreement initially, as the federal government said it was still studying the pact.

The new agreement replaces the Cotonou agreement, which was signed in 2000.

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