General News of Thursday, 2 January 2020
Ghana and Nigeria are heading for a diplomatic showdown as the Nigeria High Commission is being forcefully evicted from its diplomatic property in the capital, Accra.
The property located at No.10 Barnes Road, Accra, has been reallocated to Amaco Microfinance since 26 August 2019 by Ghana’s Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources with the consent of Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration.
A statement from the Nigeria High Commissioner to Ghana, Olufemi Michael Abikoye, dated 31st December 2019, said a letter dated 27th December 2019, was received from Solicitors acting on behalf of Amaco Microfinance Company Limited, Accra, “giving instructions for the High Commission to vacate its diplomatic property at No.10 Barnes Road, Accra.
It added: “Failure to comply within the stipulated time will lead to depositing the Mission’s belongings at the nearest Accra police station.”
Giving the latest update on the property, Amb Abikoye said: “as at 31st December 2019, the property has been broken into by the company and is being ransacked with the likelihood of being effectively occupied.”
The High Commissioner said the letter is coming following the continuous violation of the diplomatic property and a formal notification that it has been reallocated to the Microfinance.
Ghana’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs claims that the Nigerian Government failed to renew the property following expiration thus, “the property reverted to the state in compliance with Article 258 of Ghana’s 1992 Constitution.”
However, Amb Abikoye expressed surprise that the reallocation was done ”without recourse to the High Commission” despite having requested severally for “a mutual resolution of the matter, affirming that Nigerian Government is examining the situation and that an appropriate directive was being awaited.”
He, therefore, enjoined the Federal Government to convey an appropriate response to the Ghanaian leadership as regards the reallocation and request for vacation of the diplomatic property.