President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.) has approved the appointment of Adamu Mohammed Abdulhamid as the new Nigeria Ambassador to the World Trade Organisation (WTO) for a period of four years.
Abdulhamid , until his appointment, was a substantive deputy director in the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment, who took over from Mr Suleiman Adebayo.
He hails from Kano State.
The new envoy had his first degree in Political Science.
Abdulhamid replaced former Nigeria Ambassador to the body, David Adejuwon, who was unofficially recalled in 2017
The Nation reported that Adejuwon’s predicament started barely a year after he resumed duty in Geneva.
He was said to have written the ministry drawing attention to the negative consequences of the non-remission of the Overhead Cost Allocations released to the ministry by the Federal Ministry of Finance and the failure to remit the overhead appropriation to the Nigeria Trade Office (NTO), Geneva for the months of September to December 2014, for the smooth operation of the office and image of Nigeria.
With money not released and out of frustration, the envoy gave the ministry three-month notice to recall him from Geneva, settle his outstanding financial commitments, pay his repatriation entitlements and arrange for a replacement.
The ministry, to date, neither issues the necessary letter of recall nor appoints a new ambassador to the WTO.
His Statutory Foreign Service Allowance and other entitlements were stopped with effect from September 2016.
Adejuwon, however, took the matter up with the ministry and when all the entreaties failed, he returned to Nigeria in 2017 with his personal effects locked up in his official residence in Geneva with his family members stranded abroad.
He then proceeded to National Industrial Court in October 2017. But, the ministry has failed to file a statement of defence in court from October 2017 to February 2019 despite the fact that it was duly served with the court processes.
In his reaction to the story, the spokesman to the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Ifedayo Sayo, said the ministry had nominated a replacement for Adejuwon to the Presidency and it’s expecting approval.
Sayo said: “Yes, I just spoke with the minister on the issues you raised. A new nominee has been forwarded to the Presidency and the ministry is expecting a reply any moment from now. It is also true that the former ambassador instituted a case in court, which is yet to be determined by the court.”
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