The Nigerian Ambassador to Guinea Bissau, Mr John Usanga, says the greatness of Nigeria in the comity of nations cannot be wished away in spite of its challenges.
Usanga said this at the inauguration of a newly constructed Nigeria Chancery in Bissau by the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Mr Gabriel Aduda.
The ceremony which took place on the sidelines of Nigeria’s 61st Independence anniversary was attended by diplomats and members of Nigeria community in Guinea Bissau, Usanga congratulated Nigerians on the continued survival of the country as an indivisible entity and a big player in the scheme of things, especially in Africa.
Speaking on the chancery edifice, the envoy said moving into the property had brought to a close all the unpleasant experiences the mission had to endure in a rented apartment.
“Every part of me is thankful that with effect from today, we shall be in occupation of our own property,” he said.
While thanking the Federal Government for the support in making the project a reality, the Ambassador said it would deepen relations between Nigeria and Guinea Bissau.
“What we are witnessing today is not just the opening of a Chancery building but the marking of an epoch that will deepen Nigeria’s diplomatic relations with Guinea Bissau.
“The building itself is not just a mere symbol of our friendship but our relationship with the government and people of Guinea Bissau goes much more deeper than mere symbol.
“I strongly believe that within the next few years, we would be able to realise our full cooperation in the areas we have identified – trade and investment, agriculture. infrastructural development, public health, cultural exchanges., peace and security- .‘All of these are areas of realistic collaboration. However, the attainment of these full cooperation will only happen if both countries deploy conscious efforts and direct all efforts to achieve them,” he said.
Usanga specifically thanked the permanent secretary for taking out time of his busy schedule to come to Bissau to commission the building.
The permanent secretary said the edifice would improve bilateral relations between both countries politically, economically and in the areas of consular matters and trade.
Aduda also assured Federal Government’s commitment to the completion of the second phase of the project including a 400-seat capacity multipurpose hall.
Mr Henry Etor, the President of Nigeria community in Guinea Bissau said the chancery building was a pride to Nigeria and its citizens and it would promote the image of the country as the giant of Africa.
He urged the Federal Government to make funds and other logistics available in good time to complete the project for the various purposes it was meant for.
Mr Alexander Egorov, the Russian Ambassador to Guinea Bissau and the Dean of Diplomatic Corp in that country congratulated Nigeria and Usanga on behalf of his other colleagues.
He said the inauguration of the new Chancery building would improve bilateral relations between Nigeria and Guinea Bissau and enhance productivity of the Embassy workers.