By Gbenga Gbelee
The Korean Ambassador to Nigeria; Noh Kyu Duk has charged the Federal government to raise more
funds, formulate and implement deliberate policies which would meet critical needs of the over 2
million Internally Displaced Nigerians languishing in various camps in the North Eastern part of the
country and are urgently in need of attention.
Speaking today at the Ade Ajayi Auditorium of the University of Lagos, the Korean Ambassador who
was on the UNILAG campus as a guest lecturer noted that the Korean transformational story did not
come as a tea party but from a carefully set master plan which Nigeria must learn from in its quest
Ambassador Kyu Duk was reacting to the proposed plan by the government to scrap all IDP Camps in
the North East by May this year and the first hand report he got on the living condition of the
Internally Displaced Persons during his visit to Maiduguri recently.
While commending the efforts of the federal government and other donor agencies in tackling
terrorism and its debilitating effects on Nigeria’s existence, Amb. Kyu Duk buttressed the need for
food, security and shelter to be critically addressed before the May deadline date set for the closing
down of the IDP camps so as not to worsen the woes of the affected Nigerians.
The Korean Ambassador’s lecture titled; Korea – Nigeria relations:” Korea’s economic development
and cultural enrichment” combed from the Korean recent history from 1945 when it gained
independence from Japan colonialists to the outbreak of the Korean war and its ruins, the
International support for the Republic of Korea and the Armistice Agreement of 1953.
Amb. Noh Kyu Duk placed on record, the transformational agenda of Korea which was
compartmentalised into reconstruction and development, commitment to education and human
resources development, establishment of light industries and new village movement all within the
Amb. Kyu Duk said in the 1970s, the attention of the Korean republic shifted to the development of
heavy and petrochemical industries and other economic policies which were all tailored towards
driving exportation rather than importation.
He said the Korean/Nigerian bilateral relationship dates back to 1980 when the then Nigerian
President;Alhaji Sheu Shagari played host to President Chun of Korea. He also made mention of
subsequent visits of Former president Olusegun Obasanjo to Seoul in 2000 and 2006, Korean
President Roh’s visit to Nigeria, the immediate past president; Dr. Goodluck Jonathan’s visit to seoul
in 2012 and President Muhammadu Buhari’s visit to President Pak of Korea last year, efforts which
he said have gone a long way in cementing diplomatic ties between both countries.
The Korean Ambassador said bilateral trade volume between Nigeria and his country stood at 4.4
billion USD in 2004 but has regrettably dropped to just 1 billion USD, one he attributed to the
recession in the global economy.
He said the Korean culture is being promoted in Nigeria at the Korean Cultural Centre established by
the Korean embassy in Abuja where Korean language, Taekwondo classes and K-POP dance
competition are organised.
Ambassador Kyu Duk said model schools worth 15 million USD, as well as a standard vocational and
advanced technology training centre are part of the Korean government’s commitment to Nigeria
while the Korean government is working with the Nigerian government to introduce e-government
master plan worth 8.65 million USD.
He said huge investments of giant electronics and automobile companies such as Samsung, Daewoo,
KEPCO, LG and Hyundai in Nigeria are all contributing significantly to the Nigerian economy thereby
strengthening diplomatic ties between both countries.
Earlier in an opening remark, the Vice Chancellor, Univeristy of Lagos,Prof Rahamon Bello lauded the
bilateral relationship between Korea and Nigeria and especially the mutual cooperation between the
giant Korean Electronics company; LG and the University of Lagos which has added value to the
electronics’ base of the University.
The event which had in attendance principal officers of the University of Lagos led by the Vice
Chancellor; Prof. Rahamon Bello said the representative of the famous Korean electronics company;
LG making a donation of seven units of its latest model of Air Conditioner to the University of Lagos
in acknowledgement of the University’s giant strides as an institution of first choice and the Nation’s
The entire gathering made up of students, academic and non academic staff as well as principal
officers of the University were treated to Janggu drum performance as well as Taekwondo