Foreign ministry says portfolio not yet assigned to Nigeria’s new ambassadors

Minister of Foreign Affairs [Photo credit: Bulet International (Nig.) Ltd]

A day after the Nigeria’s news agency, NAN, published the portfolio of the country’s new 47 ambassadors designate, the foreign affairs ministry has denounced same.

NAN had reported on Wednesday that “The Federal Government has released the postings of the 47 ambassadors recently appointed by President Muhammadu Buhari.”

The agency then published the new portfolio of the new appointees, with the story being used by PREMIUM TIMES and other Nigerian media.

However, on Thursday, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said it has yet to assign portfolio to the 47 appointees.

A statement released by the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, Sola Enikanolaiye, in Abuja on Thursday said none of the Ambassadors had been designated to any country.

“The deployment of Ambassadors-designate will be released only when agreements (consent) have been sought and obtained from prospective countries.

“Members of the diplomatic community and the general public are therefore advised to disregard any news on the purported deployment of the 47 career Ambassadors-designate, who are currently undergoing their induction programme,’’ he said..

The Ministry, he said, disowned the “`list as totally unauthorized as it has not emanated from Government.”

It is not clear if the ministry disowned the postings because they were inaccurate or because agreements had not been gotten from the countries the officials were deployed to.

Meanwhile, the ongoing four-day induction course for the Ambassador-designate would end on Thursday.

The programme holding in Abuja was organised by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

The Spokesperson, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Clement Aduku, had said in a statement that the induction programme would be for the 47 career Ambassadors-designate recently screened and confirmed by the Senate.

The programme was declared open by President Muhammadu Buhari.

It is to acquaint the newly-appointed Ambassadors-designate with the foreign policy agenda and priorities of the current administration, including the domestic programmes of national development.

It is also aimed at reminding them of the basic elements of diplomacy, expectations and the role of the ambassadors abroad, as well as expectation from their spouses.

Resource persons were invited to deliver lectures and exchange experiences with the Ambassadors-designate on the different aspects of Nigeria’s foreign policy.

Resource persons exposed them to diplomatic and consular relations, government policy and strategy for trade and investment promotion and relations with Nigerians in the Diaspora.

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