Abuja, Nov. 17, 2020 The Chairman, House of Representatives Committee on Foreign, Rep. Yakubu Buba, has inaugurated four Sub Committees, which signalled beginning of the process of repositioning the Federal Ministry of Foreign Affairs for better service delivery.
Speaking at the ceremony in Abuja on Tuesday, Buba urged members of the sub committees to come up with ideas to review Nigeria’s foreign policy to meet international standards.
According to him, in the last few years, there have been lots of embarrassing incidences across the world involving Nigerians and the Nigerian embassies.
The lawmaker also referred to the very recent demolition of the Nigerian embassy in Ghana and harassment of Nigerian traders in the country.
Buba said that there were cases where property belonging to Nigerian ambassadors had been thrown on the streets either for non payment of rent or other related matters.
The legislator lamented that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, saddled with the responsibility of coordinating the missions, lacked effective ICT department.
He noted that things were in haphazard condition in the ministry and declared that something deliberate had to be done to reposition the ministry.
Buba recalled that President Muhammadu Buhari in March, 2020 approved a reform for the ministry to bring it back on track.
According to him, the minister, during the budget defence informed us that there is a lot of resistance to the implementation of the reform in and outside the ministry.
“On our own side as a committee, after studying the reform, we have seen that if implemented would solve all the outstanding problems of the ministry.
“I have today decided to inaugurate four sub committees to enable us to achieve a total transformation in the ministry of Foreign Affairs and our embassies worldwide to ensure improvement in our foreign policy direction for improved economic development.
“These sub committees are: Sub Committee on Retreat and International Conference, Sub Committee on the investigation of the ministry finances, missions and implementation of approved reforms by the President.
“Others are Sub Committees on Mission’s Liabilities and Intervention and Sub Committee of Mission’s Property Abroad,” he said.
“This is a very important assignment, the life of this committee on Foreign Affairs In now in the hands of these committees.
“I want you to take this assignment very seriously, mine is to watch and take reports from you.
“Once this Sub Committee succeeds, history will be made and it would help salvage this country in terms of its foreign affairs matters,” he said.
Buba said that the sub committees’ findings would assist Nigeria rejig its foreign ministry and missions and restore it back to the path of glory.
He assured the sub committees of his committee’s support to remove any perceived obstacle that might hinder them from achieving their objective.
Responding on behalf of the sub committees, Rep. Timain Adelebe thanked the chairman for the initiative which he said was in the best interest of the country.
According to him, in the last few weeks, we have engaged the ministry and we have seen the rot in the system.
He noted that Nigerian policy put together in the 1980s had become outdated and was hindering its smooth operation.
Adelebe said this was the best time to review the foreign policy in line with international standards.
He said that the retreat would create a forum for exchange of ideas on how best to position Nigeria’s foreign policy.
He said that members of sub committees would be thorough in their assignments and would come up with recommendations best for the ministry.