President Muhammadu Buhari has assured the Republic of Chad that Nigeria will support the country’s democratic transition.


Buhari made this known on Friday when he hosted Mahamat Déby, president of Chad’s transitional military council, at the presidential villa, Abuja.


Déby emerged as the president after his father was killed by rebel forces in April.


Speaking during the meeting, Buhari said Chad should not hesitate to approach Nigeria for help in areas deemed necessary.

“We are bound together by culture and geography, and we will help in all ways we can,” Buhari said in a statement signed by Femi Adesina, special adviser to the president on media and publicity.


“Nigerians know and appreciate the role Chad played in helping us to combat terrorism, and we will continue the collaboration.


“Late Marshal Itno was a personal friend, and a friend of Nigeria, and Chad has been very steadfast in defending Nigeria, so the country should not hesitate to ask for help in areas it deemed necessary.


“We will also help you to ensure a smooth transition in 18 months, as you have promised your people.”


On his part, Chad’s interim president appreciated Nigeria for the solitary shown after the death of his father, while stressing his country’s readiness to be guided in the journey towards constitutional rule.


“You were very close to Marshal Itno. I’m here to reaffirm that relationship, and for you to support our transition,” he said.


“We rely on our brother country Nigeria, as we have shared history, culture and geography. We are ready to be guided by you in our journey to constitutional rule.”