The Federal Government has confirmed the disengagement of 25 ambassadors and heads of missions, just after a notice was issued to the affected diplomats.
While the affected diplomats complained that the December 31 notice issued to them was “too sudden”, it was gathered that the Minister of Foreign Affairs Geoffrey Onyeama had written to them in November, directing that they return to Nigeria on or before December 31.
As some of the envoys pleaded for two to three months extension in order to complete some diplomatic formalities before their disengagement, they were reminded of the tenure extension given to them by President Buhari in 2018.
Ferdinand Nwonye, a spokesperson of the foreign affairs ministry who confirmed the disengagement of the envoys on Tuesday December 31, said in a previous statement that the call for an extension by the ambassadors and heads of missions was selfish.
“They should have been disengaged by now. When officers, including ambassadors are recalled, they have to leave. They can decide from there to go elsewhere. But they should surely disengage from the mission.
“They cannot remain. There is even another telegram that instructed that the most senior foreign service officer should take over from them.”