The Conference of Non Career Ambassadors has asked President Bola Tinubu for an extension of the October 31 deadline for envoys to return to the country.
Tinubu had, on September 2, through the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Yusuf Maitama Tuggar, directed all envoys to return on October 31.
But in a letter to President Tinubu on October 13, and copied the Chief of Staff to the President, Femi Gbajabiamila, the envoys said the deadline was not tenable as a result of the non-implementation of the Authority to Incur Expenditures.
The envoys in the letter signed by the Dean of Nigerian Ambassadors, Nwannebuike Ominyi, said the request for extension was as a result of their children’s education, which will be disrupted by the October 31 date.
It read, “We heartily want to appreciate the President and Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of the Federal Republic of Nigeria for giving us the opportunity and privilege to represent our country as Ambassadors and High Commissioners. We are, indeed, grateful for the honour to serve our fatherland.
“We also appreciate the President’s decision to recall us in his move to re-engineer the foreign policy of his administration, and we hereby, convey our support for this administration’s effort to take our country forward.
“However, as we are winding down at our respective countries of assignment, we are constrained to draw the attention of Mr. President that the deadline of October 31 brings a major challenge to our children’s education. This is because schools resumed a couple of weeks ago, and students are only about half way into the school term; as such, the transition from their current schools to schools in Nigeria will be challenging.”
The envoys appealed to President Tinubu to look into the deadline for the recall of ambassadors and grant an extension beyond December 31, 2023.