The outgoing Nigeria President Muhammadu Buhari made 108 foreign trips from 2015 to 2023. He is due to complete his second term by May 29, 2023.
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The retired Army General made the highest number of foreign trips in 2022 and 2016, he jetted out of Nigeria 42 times both years combined.
In this post, we’ve documented the list of international presidential trips embarked upon by the Katsina-born ex-military head of state.
We don’t know how much was spent on his overseas travel almost eight years ago, but we do know that the president’s office gets huge budgetary travel allowances called estacode in the government circle.
Summary of Foreign Trips By Buhari
Within seven months of assumption of office in 2015, Buhari made 16 international trips before December 31, 2015
Here is the foreign travel tracker for Nigeria’s outgoing President Muhammadu Buhari:
- 2015: 16
- 2016: 20
- 2017: 10
- 2018: 13
- 2019: 13
- 2020: 2
- 2021: 6
- 2022: 22
- 2023: 7
And here is the list of foreign countries Buhari visited, the date of visit, and the purpose of his visit through 2015:
June 3, 2015:
His first international presidential trip was a neighbouring country, Niger Republic. He wasn’t alone, he traveled along with Cameroonian president.
Purpose of visit: His was in the Republic of Nigeria for the Anti-Boko Haram summit. The leaders extensively discussed on how to wipe off insurgency on their soil, especially in the Northeast geopolitical, the epicentre of Boko Haram insurgency.
June 4, 2015:
From Niamey, the president made a stop at N’Djamena, the capital city of the Republic of Chad on June 4, 2015.
Purpose: His visit was tagged, “State Visit” but it was later revealed that Buhari’s visit to Chad was similar to the one he made the previous day.
During his visit, he held a talk with Idriss Déby on the calamity the deadly Boko Haram insurgents had caused in Nigeria/Chad territory.
June 7 – June 8:
Muhammadu Buhari’s first international trip out of African soil was to Munich, Germany.
Purpose: He was in Germany for the 42nd G7 summit. However, he seized the opportunity to seek the support of the G7 members in fighting terrorism in Nigeria.
At the sideline of the summit, he persuaded German Chancellor Angela Merkel; Canadian prime minister Stephen Harper; French President François Hollande; Japanese prime minister Shinzō Abe, and World Bank President at the time Jim Yong Kim to help revive Nigeria’s economy.
June 12-June 13:
Country: South Africa (Johannesburg)
Purpose: To attend the 25th African Union Summit on Security where discussions centred on terrorism and how to combat it in Africa.
July 19 – 23 July 23:
Country of visit: United States (Washington, D.C.)
Purpose: State Visit where he met with US President Barack Obama and other top US officials. Basically, his visit was to seek the military and intelligence support of the US government in combating insurgency.
July 29 – July 30:
Country: Cameroon (Yaounde)
Purpose: Like the main objective of his previous foreign trips, Buhari met President Paul Biya of Cameroon and discussed collaboration with the country on how to end Boko Haram insurgency in Nigeria and neighbouring countries.
August 2 – Augist 3:
Country: Benin Republic (Cotonou)
Purpose: For the Republic of Benin’s 55th Independence celebration. As usual, Buhari didn’t forget to mention the activities of the terror group in his country and sought more commitment from President Thomas Boni Yayi.
Against, another foreign trip took Buhari to Accra, Ghana. He met with President John Dramani Mahama.
The purpose of Buhari’s visit to the African country was to discuss modalities for the repatriation of embezzled funds that were allegedly stolen by the officials of the previous government led by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
Setpember 14 – Sept 16:
Buhari landed in Paris, France, for a bilateral trade (oil) and security (fight against terrorism) with President François Hollande of France.
September 24 – Sept 29:
Country: United States (New York City)
The second foreign trip by Buhari to the U.S in 2015 was when he attended the 70th session of the United Nations General Assembly at the New York City.
October 26 – Oct 30:
During this period, Buhari was in New Delhi (India) for the 3rd India-Africa Forum on the invitation of Narendra Modi. Also in attendance are representatives from all 54 African countries.
On his way back from India, Buhari made a brief stop in Khartoum (Sudan) for bilateral talks.
November 22 – Nov 24:
Country: Tehran (Iran)
Purpose: Third Gas Exporting Countries Forum. He also seized the opportunity to meet Nigerians in Iran.
November 28 – Nov 30:
Country: Valletta (Malta)
Purpose: He attended the 2015 Commonwealth Heads of Government summit along with various commonwealth member states
Novermber 30 – December 1
For the second time in 2015, Buhari visited France to attend the Paris Conference on Climate change dubbed, “Paris Conference of Parties 21”. He that Nigeria will cut 20% of its emissions as part of the carbon reduction effort.
December 4 – Dec 5:
Buhari last international trip in 2015 was to Johannesburg, South Africa. It was his second visit to the former Apartheid country in 2015.
Purpose: China Africa Summit. On the sideline, he discussed economic relations with President Jacob Zuma.
The president embarked on the highest number of foreign trips in 2016. He jetted out of Nigeria 20 times, two of which were for medicals in the United Kingdom.
Here are the foreign trips embarked upon by Buhari from January 1, 2016 to December 31, 2016.
He began the year with a trip at Cotonou, the Republic of Benin. He attended the 11th summit of the Heads of State of the Niger Basin Authority, where a discussion was centred on water resources in the region.
January 17 – Jan 20:
Destination: Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirate
Mission: He attended World Future Energy Summit. Agreements on trade and share intelligence against insurgency were signed with the UAE government.
It was Buhari’s first trip to UAE since the assumption of office in 2015.
Less than a week after returning from Abu Dhabi, the presidential jet took off again from Abuja and landed in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
Purpose: He attended the 26th Summit of African Union Heads of State and Government. Discussions were centred on Peace and Security.
January 27 – Jan 29:
From Adis Ababa, Buhari landed in Eldoret, Kenya. It was a 2-in-1 visit: First, he joined the memorial service for Kenya defence Forces soldiers that lost their lives in the attacks that were carried out by the most dreaded terror group in Africa, Al-Shabaab; second, he talked on ways to promote intra-Africa trade including banking and taxation across the African region.
February 2 – Feb 4:
Country visited: Strasbourg, France
Mission: It was a state visit. The Nigerian president addressed the special session of the European Parliament where he specifically reiterated the support of the group in fight against insurgency and corruption.
On February 5, 2016, Buhari made his first foreign medical trip to the United Kingdom to meet his doctors. It was a 6-day medical vacation, according to SaharaReporters.com
Purpose: He attended Sharm El Sheikh Africa 2016
February 22 – Feb 27:
He visited Riyadh, Jeddah, Mecca, and Medina in Saudi Arabia to woo Saudi investors to Nigeria.
February 27 – Feb 28:
From Saudi Arabia, the Nigeria’s presidential jet landed in Doha, Qatar, for OPEC Meeting
Country visited: Equatorial Guinea (Malabo)
Purpose: He discussed maritime security and oil theft in the Niger Delta with his counterpart President Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo
March 30 – April 3:
The president returned to the U.S, and this time, he attended the 4th Nuclear Security Summit that was held in Washington D.C.
April 11 – April 14:
Beijing, China, was Buhari’s stop. He discussed various trade agreements worth $6 billion with the Chinese government.
May 13 – May 15:
Country: United Kingdom (London)
Mission: He attended Anti-Corruption Summit.
June 6 to June 19:
President Buhari went back to the U.K, this time to attend to his health. He was treated for ear infection.
Destination: N’Djamena (Chad)
Mission: He attended the Inauguration of Idris Deby
August 27 – Aug 28:
Another foreign trip took Buhari to Nairobi, Kenya, for the 6th Tokyo International Conference on African Development.
September 11 – Sept 15:
Country visited: United States (New York City)
Purpose of visit: 7th First Session of the United Nations General Assembly.
October 13 – Oct 16:
The Nigerian president was in Berlin, Germany, and attended the Nigerian business forum to boost economic ties between Nigeria and Germany.
He told the gathering that his government secured the release of 21 Chibok girls and sought the support of Germany in military ties.
November 14 – Nov 18:
Country: Marrakesh (Morocco)
Mission: He attended the United Nations Climate Change Conference.
December 5 – Dec 7:
Buhari attended the 3rd Dakar International Forum on Peace and Security in Africa in Senegal.
The Nigerian president ended his 2016 international trip in Banjul, The Gambia, for ECOWAS Summit.
He led other ECOWAS leaders to persuade Yahya Jammeh to accept defeat in the country’s presidential election to Adama Barrow.
Buhari made 10 international trips in 2017, seven of such trips were official while three were medical trips to London.
|January 7||Ghana (Accra)||For the inauguration ceremony of Nana Akufo-Addo|
|January 13||The Gmabia (Banjul)||To resolve post-election crisis in The Gambia|
|January 13 – Jan 14||Mali (Bamako)||For the 27th Africa France Summit|
|January 19 – March 10||Britain (London)||For medicals, spending 51 days out side Nigeria.|
|May 7 – August 19||Britain (London)||For a 104-day medical vacation|
|September 17 – Sep 20||USA (New York City)||For the Seventy-Second session of the United Nations General Assembly|
|October 18 – Oct 22||Turkey (Ankara and Istanbul)||For bilateral talks and 9th D-8 Summit|
|November 28 – Nov 30||Cote d’Ivoire (Abidjan)||For 5th EU-AU Summit|
|December 1 – Dec 4||Jordan (Amman)||For counter-terrorism summit|
In 2018, the retired Major General was out of Nigerian soil 13 times for official and non-official trips. He was in London once on May 8, 2018 for a 4-day medical review. He returned to the Presidential Villa May 11, 2018.
Here is the list of international trips by Buhari.
|January 28 – 30||Ethiopia (Addis Ababa)||He attended the 30th Summit of African Union Heads of State and Government. During his visit, he was named the 2018 Anti-Corruption Champion|
|April 19 – 20||London||Buhari attended the 2018 Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting|
|April 28 – May May 4||USA (Washington D.C)||He attended the 20th Anniversary of the International Criminal Court. He was a keynote speaker.|
|May 8 – 11||London||Buhari made a medical trip to London|
|June 10 – 11||Morocco (Rabat)||He was in Morocco for working visit|
|June 30 – July 3||Mauritania (Nouakchott)||Buhari attended the 31st Summit of African Union Heads of State and Government. He claimed at the summit that Nigeria was winning the war against Boko Haram.|
|July 15 – 18||The Netherlands (Hague)||He attened the 20th Anniversary of the International Criminal Court. He was a keynote speaker.|
|July 29||Togo (Lome)||For the ECOWAS-ECCAS Heads of State and Government Summit. The theme of the summit was centred on Peace, Security, Stability and Fight against Terrorism and Violent Extremism.|
|September 1 – 7||China (Beijin)||For 7th Summit of the Forum on China-African Cooperation.|
|September 23 – 29||United States (New York City)||President Buhari attended the Seventy-Third Session of the United Nations General Assembly|
|November 10 – 16||France (Paris)||The Nigerian President attended the maiden edition of the Paris Peace Forum. President Emmanuel macron was the host.|
|December 2 – 3||Krakow, Poland||Buhari attended 24th session for Climate Change|
President Buhari concluded his 2018 presidential international trips in Niamey, Niger Republic for the 60th proclamation anniversary of Niger Republic.
2019 was an election year. Buhari was seeking a second term in office. Even at that, the election would not stop him from embarking on 13 foreign trips, two of which were personal (one for a medical vacation in London).
Here is a rundown of foreign countries the Nigerian President visited through January to December 2019
|Date||Destination||Purpose of Visit|
|April 2||Dakar, Senegal||For the inauguration of President Macky Sall’s second term in office|
|April 4 – 7||Amman, Jordan||For the World Economic Forum on the Middle East and North Africa.|
|April 7 – 10||Dubai, UAE||Yokohama, Japan|
|April 13||N’Djamena, Chad||For the Extraordinary Session of the Conference of Heads of State and Government of the Community of Sahel-Saharan States. Discussion: Regional security concerns|
|April 25 – May 5||London||For medicals|
|May 16 – 21||Saudi Arabia||For Lesser Hajj|
|May 29 – 30||Jeddah, Saudi Arabia||For the Summit of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC)|
|August 28 – 30||Yokohoma, Japan||Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD) Summit. Buhari signed various MoUs with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe|
|September 14 – 15||Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso||ECOWAS Extraordinary Summit on Counter Terrorism|
|September 21 – 26||New York City, United States||Seventy-fourth session of the United Nations General Assembly|
|October 2 – 4||Pretoria, South Africa||He met with President Cyril Ramaphosa to discuss how SA government can prevail on its citizens to stop xenophobic attacks against Nigerians and other African nationals in South Africa.|
|October 21 – 23||Sochi, Russia||To attend the First Russia-Africa Summit|
|October 29 – 31||Riyadh, Saudi Arabia||To attend the 3rd Future Investment Initiative business forum|
Buhari has the least international presidential trips in 2020. He didn’t make any medical trip to London. Wondering what deterred him from such travel?
2020 was a year the world witnessed the deadliest pandemic in history COVID-19. There was a lockdown. The pandemic forced millions around the world to work from home.
The Nigerian president wasn’t exceptional, he was forced to work from his office in Aso Villa. The two foreign trips he made were before COVID-19 reached its peak. There was a halt in flight operations around the world
January 18 – 23:
Buhari was in London, the United Kingdom to attend the UK Africa Investment Summit.
February 7 – 8:
His second and last visit to a foreign country in 2020 was Ethiopia. He was in Addis Ababa between February 7 to February 8 for the 33rd Summit of African Union Heads of State and Government.
There were still restrictions on flight operations in Europe, Asia, North America, and other continents around the world due to COVID-19.
Again, the pandemic limited Buhari’s foreign travel until March when he made his first trip outside Nigerian soil.
Here is a list of six foreign countries Buhari visited in 2021:
March 20 – April 6:
The first traveling opportunity he had post-pandemic was a stop in London for a routine medical check-up.
July 27 – 30:
Visited Country: London (United Kingdom)
Purpose: For Buhari the Global Education Summit on Financing Global Partnership for Education (GPE) 2021 to 2025
September 18 – 24:
Country: United States
Purpose: For the Seventy-sixth session of the United Nations General Assembly which was held in New York City.
October 3 – 6:
Buhari landed in Addis Ababa for the inauguration of President Abiy Ahmed for a second term in office.
October 25 – 28:
He visited Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, for the Future Investment Initiative. He seized the opportunity on October 29 to perform a lesser Hajj at Jeddah
November 10 – 13:
Buhari was in France where he attended the Paris Peace Forum. He also had bilateral talks with Emmanuel Macron of France.
The president embarked on 22 foreign trips in 2022: 18 official and two unofficial (medical tourism to London).
Here is a list of foreign trips embarked upon by Buhari from January 2022 to December 2022
|January 19||The Gambia (Banjul)||For the the35th African Union Summit|
|February 3 – 4||Ethiopia (Addis Ababa)||Buhari was in Abu Dhabi to pay condolence to the family of late Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan|
|February 17 – 18||Brussels, Belgium||For the 6th EU-AU Summit|
|March 2 – 3||Nairobi, Kenya||For the Commemoration of the 50th Anniversary of the United Nations Environmental Program|
|March 6 – 17||London, UK||Medical checkup|
|May 8 – 9||Abidjan, Ivory Coast||For the fifteenth session of the Conference of the Parties (COP15) of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification.|
|May 21||Abu Dhabi, UAE||For a state visit with Prime-Minister Pedro Sánchez and King Felipe VI|
|May 26 – 28||Malabo, Equitorial Guinea||For the African Union Extra-ordinary Session of Assembly of Heads of State and Government|
|May 31 -June 1||Madrid, Spain||To attend Liberia’s 175th Independence Anniversary celebrations|
|June 4||Accra, Ghana||For the 2022 Second Ordinary Session of ECOWAS Parliament.|
|June 22 – 26||Kigali, Rwanda||For the 26th Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM)|
|June 28 – July 2||Lisbon, Portugal||Working visit with Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa and United Nations Ocean Conference|
|July 6 -7||Dakar, Senegal||For the International Development Association (IDA) for Africa Summit|
|July 26||Monrovia, Liberia||For a working visit. However, President Umaro Sissoco Embaló conferred on Buhari Amilcal Cabral Award.|
|September 19 – 21||New York, United States||Seventy-seventh session of the United Nations General Assembly|
|October 25 – 26||Seoul, South Korea||For the 1st WHO World Bio Summit|
|October 31 – November 13||London, UK||For medical checkup|
|November 25 – 26||Niamey, Niger||He attended the African Union Summit on Industrialisation and Economic Diversification and the Extraordinary Session on African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA)|
|December 8||Bissau, Guniea Bissau||For a working visit. However, President Umaro Sissoco Embaló confered on Buhari Amilcal Cabral Award.|
|December 10 – 18||Washington D.C, USA||For the United States–Africa Leaders Summit 2022 along with 49 other African leaders.|
2023 is the last Buhari’s year in office, however, this didn’t stop him from embarking on seven international trips.
Here is the list of foreign trips embarked upon by Buhari from the beginning of January till May 9, 2023
Buhari was in Nouakchott Mauritania to participate in the Programme of the Third Forum of the African Conference for Peace and to receive African Award for Strengthening Peace. It was presented to him by the Abu Dhabi Peace Forum.
January 24 – 26:
Country: Dakar, Senegal.
Purpose: To participate in the Dakar 2 Summit hosted by the African Development Bank called “Feeding Africa: Food Sovereignty and Resilience”
February 16 – 19
He attended the 36th Ordinary Session of the Assembly of Heads of State and Government of the African Union in Addis Ababa.
March 4 -8:
Buhari was in Doha, Qatar for the Fifth United Nations Conference on the Least Developed Countries (LDC5).
April 11 – 19:
Country visited: Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
Purpose: Buhari visited Saudi Arabia on a working visit and also performed his last Umrahh as Nigeria’s president.
May 5 – 6:
Buhari joined other Presidents and Heads of State of the Commonwealth of Nations to attend the Coronation of Charles III and Camilla.
He also extended his stay by a week for personal medical appointments “at the behest of his Dentist, who has started attending to him,” his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina said.