Details Of Gbajabiamila’s Meeting With UK Envoy, Laing Emerge
The details of the meeting between the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, and the outgoing British High Commissioner to Nigeria, Catriona Laing, have emerged.
Naija News reports that Gbajabiamila met with the UK envoy at his office at the National Assembly, Abuja on Tuesday, days after the appointment of Richard Hugh Montgomery as Laing’s replacement.
Speaking during the meeting, the Speaker said the national assembly has a great working relationship with Laing and had robust engagements on some critical bills.
He said Laing’s passion was evident in many of their discussions, hoping that her successor will build on the relationship between the UK and Nigeria.
Gbajabiamila added that Nigeria and the National Assembly will miss the outgoing UK envoy and her various engagements.
He said: “It’s a bitter-sweet visit I would call it. Sweet because it’s always been good to have you around, sit with you, knock heads together, and discuss various issues. But bitter because you’re outgoing. It is bitter because I personally have to speak for several Nigerians everywhere and in their official and in their personal capacity as it is.
“I have enjoyed a great working relationship with you, you and over time had robust engagements and interactions both formal and informal. You’ve been very supportive. It’s been a very enriching time for me.
“Your passion is so evident in many of our discussions, and my hope and my prayer are that whoever succeeds you will carry on in that same trajectory in building and fostering an even more sustainable relationship between our two countries. I really do thank you very much.
“We will miss you. Nigeria will miss you. The parliament will miss you and your various engagements. I thank you once again very profusely for the interest that you have shown in the work we do here in Parliament.”
In her remarks, Laing said her working experience in Nigeria has been wonderful, adding that she enjoyed the good working relationship with the Speaker and his aides.
She said: “So, I’ve had some highs, many highs, a few lows, but overall, it’s been an absolutely wonderful experience. And it’s a very strong foundation and it’s been really a good working relationship with Mr Speaker and his team.
“We’ve worked together on a number of very important electoral bills, his own initiative, the center’s foundation (Gbajabiamila legislative mentorship programme) he’s set up to support young legislators and I was very privileged to support the launching of that so it’s been a great pleasure working with him.”