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Buhari shocked by Cameron's resignation as Africa assesses Brexit impact

Buhari shocked by Cameron's resignation as Africa assesses Brexit impact

Brexit

As the Brexit vote is startling global economies and the financial market, the resignation of British Prime Minister David Cameron has rather left Nigeria’s president Muhammadu Buhari in shock.

The United Kingdom voted to leave the European Union with nearly 52% becoming the first European country to do so. Immediately after the results were declared, David Cameron who had urged the country to vote “Remain” announced that he will resign as UK Prime Minister and leave by October.

Many hours after the resignation of David Cameron, President Buhari described his decision as a sign of selflessness and a mark of a “democratic leader who respects the will if the people”.

With regard to the UK and the EU, what that will impact is our trade relations. Even that, I don’t see that having an impact immediately because, they will now begin the process of negotiating their EU exit.

In a statement released on his behalf on Twitter by his spokesperson Shehu Garba, Buhari said he regrets Cameron’s resignation and “Nigeria has enjoyed remarkable goodwill, support & understanding under the capable leadership of the outgoing PM over the years”.

“Cameron’s resignation in response to the outcome of a referendum that supported Britain to leave the European Union was a demonstration of courage by a democratic leader who respects the will of the people, even if he didn’t agree with their decision,” he added.

President Buhari however concluded that despite the outcome of the referendum, Nigeria looks forward to a greater cooperation and consolidation of shared interests with Britain.

Meanwhile, Kenya’s president declined to comment on the Brexit vote according to local media reports which quoted Kenya’s Ambassador to Belgium and the EU, Johnson Weru as saying that Kenya “may gain from this exit in a minimal way. But in the fullness of time, what will give us direction is legislation that will be developed to give effect to the referendum.”

On the contrary, Ghana’s foreign affairs minister, Hannah Tetteh, has told a local radio station, Citi FM, that UK’s decision to leave the European Union will affect Ghana’s trade with that country.

“With regard to the UK and the European Union, what that will impact is our trade relations. Even that, I don’t see that having an impact immediately because, they will now begin the process of negotiating their exit from the European Union,” she said.

Hanna Tetteh added that eventhough the exit has not been formally done, the UK is bound by agreements signed under the EU and her country will start talks with the UK on bilateral trade agreements.

Global markets are reeling after the news and the British pound has slumped to a 31-year low immediately after the Brexit vote.