- By Elizabeth DickinsonElizabeth Dickinson is a Gulf-based American journalist and former assistant managing editor at Foreign Policy.
News is emerging today from Nigeria that U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is set for a visit there, as well as Kenya and several other African countries in the not-so-distant future.
As Dow Jones puts it, "many African countries felt snubbed by [Obama’s] choice of Ghana" last month for his inagural trip to the continent. That’s an excellent understatement. As I wrote here a few weeks ago, "miffed" might be a more accurate word to describe Nigeria’s feelings, in particular. Africa’s most-populous country didn’t take kindly to being upstaged by its smaller neighbor — who is, ahem, also in Nigeria’s self-dubbed sphere of influence.
Now the injustice will be at least partially remedied, it seems. Maybe Nigeria’s U.S.-based diplomats went on overdrive to secure Clinton’s visit. Or the White House was worried about angering its 3rd largest supplier of oil. Then again, the visit could have been in the cards long before the Ghana-row erupted.
Whatever the truth may be, Clinton may have to do some reassuring that Nigeria is not an afterthought (…even if it is).