UNITED States president,
Barrack Obama will break
tradition to host Nigeria’s
President Mohammadu Buhari
at the Blair House, the official
guest house of the American
president, when the later will
be arriving Washington D.C on
Monday next week.
Obama’s gesture will be a
clear departure from American
government’s tradition
to visiting heads of state,
particularly African leaders.
Nigerian Pilot gathered that
Obama would be hosting
Buhari as his personal guest
at the Blair House, right
opposite the White House, in
demonstration of his (Obama’s)
readiness to establish closer ties
with Nigeria.
It would be recalled that
during official visits to
Washington D.C. while in office,
former President Goodluck
Jonathan and his entourage
usually stayed at the Westin
Grand Hotel, and at other times,
he booked Waldorf-Astoria
Hotel and the Pierre Hotel.
It was gathered that the
decision to host Buhari in Blair
House would not only cut
down the cost of the trip but
also allow time for informal
discussions by both leaders.
Buhari is said to have enlisted
32 persons to accompany him
on the White House trip next
week, a clear departure from the
immediate past administration
of President Jonathan who was
once reported to have embarked
on a two-day trip with a team of
about 100 persons.
It was also learnt that although
the Nigerian protocol unit
had planned the trip to be for
two days, the US government
offered to accommodate the
visitors for three days.
During the coming visit of the
Nigerian new leader, according
to sources, Presidents Buhari
and Obama will exchange
“wish lists.”
These will contain the requests
of both leaders from each other,
as well as firm pledges on
how they plan to come to each
other’s aid.
According to Wikipedia,
the Blair House is located
at 1651–1653 Pennsylvania
Avenue NW in Washington,
D.C., opposite the Eisenhower
Executive Office Building of the
White House, off the corner of
Lafayette Park.
The main house was built in
1824. The original brick house
was built as a private home for
Joseph Lovell, eighth Surgeon
General of the United States
Army. In 1836, it was acquired
by Francis Preston Blair, a
newspaper publisher and
influential adviser to President
Andrew Jackson. It would
remain in his family for the
following century.
In 1859, Blair built a house
for his daughter and son-inlaw,
Elizabeth Blair Lee and
Captain Samuel Phillips Lee,
at 1653 Pennsylvania Avenue,
next door to Blair House at 1651
Pennsylvania Avenue. Captain
Lee (later an admiral) was a
grandson of Richard Henry Lee
and third cousin of Robert E.
Lee. The houses have since been
combined, and the complex is
sometimes referred to as the
Blair-Lee House, though Blair
House is the official name

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