President Ernest Koroma of Sierra Leone has lauded the spirit of African brotherliness expressed towards his country by President Muhammadu Buhari and Nigerians.
He stated this after a Nigerian delegation led by Mr Geoffrey Onyeama, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, paid him a courtesy visit in Freetown after delivering 315 tonnes of assorted relief materials, after a devastating landslide and flooding that hit Sierra Leone on Aug. 14.
Authorities say the death toll from the landslides rose to nearly 500.
Authorities say no fewer than 600 people remained missing , with rescue officials warning that the chances of finding survivors are decreasing each day.
The death toll earlier stood at 450.
Onueama also delivered one million dollars cash to Sierra Leone to help alleviate the suffering of people affected by flood and mudslide in the country.
Koroma thanked Buhari for his concern and support at this present period of Sierra Leone’s tragedy over mudslide and flood.
“I thank my colleague and brother, President Muhammadu Buhari, who has sent you to make donations and support to us at this present moment.
“I was moved last week when I received a call from President Buhari himself, who was calling from London.
“He was one of the first Heads of State that called to sympathize with us”, he said.
Koroma further said that he was very happy Buhari is back home in Nigeria to continue with his state functions and prayed God to continue to help both countries to continue to develop their strong friendship.
He said Nigeria and Sierra Leone have come a long way and would continue to work together for the interest of both countries, because by so doing, they would be fulfilling the ideals of ECOWAS.
Earlier, Onyeama said that President Buhari had sent him to express to the government and people of Sierra Leone his profound sadness over the tragedy of flood and mudslide that has befallen the country claiming over 400 lives.
“We have come to really express our profound sorrow and condolences for the large loss of lives, damage to properties and suffering of a large number of people in your country”, he said.
Onyeama was accompanied on the visit by the Director-General of the National Emergency Management Agency, Mustapha Maihaja; Zainab Sheriff who represented the Minister of Health; and Abdul Mukhtar from the State House.