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POLITICS OF REAPPOINTING AMBASSADORS- ORDEAL OF NIGERIA'S AMBASSADOR IN VENEZUELA CONTINUES

By Our Reporter

Nigerians desperate for political appointment or reappointment will not stop at doing anything to retain their position or get reappointed and that seem to be the case of Nigerian Ambassador to Venezuela, Ambassador Chief Felix Oboro who has been in the news since last year for various wrong reasons. Again, our reporter in Abuja was reliably informed in a social event which recently took place to congratulate some newly screened and cleared political Ambassadors.

The social party was organized by a top politician in Abuja for some of his political friends and associates nominated for Ambassadorial appointments. The occasion was attended by who is who in the political class.

When it was time to advise some of the newly nominated political Ambassadors, it was as if every politician present had the same mind: Do not behave the way our Ambassador in Venezuela did, do not implement Nigeria's foreign policy in your village style, make sure you operate within the law and do not prove ignorant of the law, do not put your hand into public funds, be friendly with your staff, do not misuse your privileges, report events and developments early to the government of Nigeria and realize that you are now under the Foreign Affairs Ministry.

Unfortunately for Ambassador Oboro, his name surfaced at this occasion when one of the invitees who apparently did not know who he is, was tutored there by a Niger Deltan politician who took the floor to inform invitees on Ambassador Felix Oboro. Chief Oboro is seeking reappointment as Nigerian Ambassador to Venezuela but from what this reporter analyzed in the social gathering; retaining him would be a liability to President Goodluck Jonathan administration. It is obvious, our politicians know themselves and what each one of them is capable of doing.

This reporter gathered in the social event, that Ambassador Oboro had been queried by the appointing authority, the Foreign Affairs Ministry based on allegations leveled against him and published widely by online media earlier in the year. From a reliable source in the political circle, the Ambassador admitted of wrong doing but the Foreign Affairs Ministry has not taken any action on the matter. The said Ambassador of course has been parading himself and boastfully telling anyone who cares that he has been told to remain in Venezuela.

May be Ambassador Oboro did not use discretion in Venezuela. If not, he would not have taken himself to the gallows for hanging; his fellow politicians do not admire his report card released to the press by his political competitors who have better credentials and competence than him in Bayelsa State, his State of origin.

This reporter also gathered that Ambassador Felix Oboro gave copies of the query he had received from the Foreign Affairs Ministry to some politicians who attended the social party and his self-indicted reply without knowing that they will refer to it in form of advice to others. By giving copies of the query and his reply to some politicians, he might have wanted them to intercede on his behalf without knowing that certain politicians frown against the alleged looting of tax payers' fund at the Embassy in Venezuela.

What is the rationale behind the attempt to re-appoint him when for four years he was idle by not reporting events and developments to the government of Nigeria? What is the basis for retaining him in that position when it was known that he violated the privileges given to him by the Venezuelan government? What is the yard stick to measure his performance to warrant his re- appointment to the same country or doesn't he know that Nigeria has a lot to benefit from Venezuela? Or does some interest have to profit for his reappointment to Venezuela?

This reporter at the function was also reliably informed that the said Ambassador owns private bank accounts in Yenagoa and elsewhere, stashed with diverted government funds; this act is committed in collaboration with the accountant in the Embassy who also is a co-signatory to the bank account of Nigeria's international organization in Venezuela. Some years back, Ambassador Felix Oboro was dragged before a judge in Port Harcourt during which he used his position to subvert justice on the said matter. Those clamoring for his reappointment should therefore ask questions.

A politician from Bayelsa State who does not want his name in print states that ¨Bayelsa State wants to produce Ambassadors that will be respected internationally when they talk, not someone whose record in the (Bayelsa) State is at very low ebb. Why does he want to remain in Venezuela when he has not achieved anything for the State and Nigeria during his tenure as Ambassador? ¨

Ambassador Oboro is not concerned because to him he has settled those that need be at the Foreign Affairs Ministry for his re-appointment to Venezuela or any other country. The Bayelsa State politician went further to state the policy of Bayelsa State Government that: ''Take Federal appointment but bring Federal presence to Bayelsa State. So, what has Chief Oboro brought to the State in four years except for threats, blackmail, embarrassments and voodoo he uses to settle scores. So, those wishing to re-appoint him will only put their honour at stake''. The same politician also informed this reporter that "Ambassador Oboro defected from PDP to Labour party when the fortune of PDP nosedived in Bayelsa State, only to return to PDP when the soup has been put on the table. Information at our disposal is that he will soon defect to another political party that has promised to fund the expansion of his fish pond to be seen as the best in Niger Delta."

But Ambassador Felix Oboro is only a metaphor in Nigeria's collapsed system. Nigeria is one of the few countries where a man with such a sordid wastage of public funds could still aspire to clinch Ambassadorial appointment after admitting that he spent tax payer's funds without regard to the law. The irony of the whole situation is that it was not as if there is no check and balance but the political and administrative leadership in the Foreign Affairs Ministry appear to have allowed him to go scot free not only because he is from Bayelsa State but because he attracts people with oil bunkering he would do on their behalf.

Public appointments such as Ambassadorial appointment should naturally be for people who are found worthy not just in qualifications but also in performance and character, if in doubt, leave out, since there are questionable issues in the character of Ambassador Felix Oboro, let his State Governor nominate a new person with integrity to replace him. This is most regrettable, it is particularly sad that such a person could still remain as Nigeria's Principal Representative under a Minister who until recently was a career Ambassador himself to South Africa. May be there are things that I do not know as a reporter in this matter. Every attempt to get information from the Foreign Affairs Ministry is made impossible by no comments response. Why has Ambassador Oboro's reply to the query authorized by the same Minister not attended to? His case should not receive a turn away or blind eye situation, it is situations like this that continue to give Nigeria a bad name outside and probably responsible for the extra security checks Nigerians are subjected to while traveling abroad.

Your Comment
 
 
 

JOY OKOKO | 3/15/2012 1:03:00 AM
So.Ambassador Oboro is already a reference point of politicians.Why reappoint him after much scandas that affects the image of Nigeria.Why was he searched at Caracas airport despite his immunity ?Other countries would have recalled him. He was only lucky that Mr.Joshua Jock one of his handy men was around to bargain for 15kg ( fifteen kg) hard drug the Ambassador was taken to Nigeria to sell to raise money to contest for governorship position.
JULIUS IGOR | 3/15/2012 1:16:00 AM
The name of Ambassador Felix Oboro has been written in hall of shame.You can see what he has turned the Embassy in to?He even collects under the table money from hungry Nigerians through Mr.Joshua Jock.The Nigerian government should not play ethnic game on Chief Oboro's issue.He came to divide Nigerians in venezuela,colombia and ecuador.The Chief of staff in Vice-President office should be careful by maintaining distance from him because of Ambassador Oboro's drug related antecedents.
DANBABA SULE | 3/15/2012 4:52:00 AM
Under the freedom Act of information ,we shall know how many reports,he sent to Foreign Affairs Ministry in four years and the way he handled the affairs of Nigerians in Venezuela, Colombia and Ecuador.If he has not performed,why should FGN reappoint him.?He was seen in the National Assembly and in the Presidency today lobbying for reappoinment to become idle for another four years which will enable him continue with his unlimited trips to Nigeria and to write damaging reports on his staff. Are there no better Bayelsian ? Is he the best from that State? Why does he want to remain abroad when he never respected the law of both countries.In any case,Nigeria is a country where you find a man on the maternity bed breast feeding his baby! Chief oboro is a bad product to represent Nigeria and President GEJ.Let ijaw leaders think positively on their support for Chief Oboro.lnstead a career staff from Bayelsa State in Foreign Affairs Ministry should be nominate to do Bayelsa State proud. By the way what is he doing with his wife in the induction course for new Ambassadors ? The place is not meant for a white powder baron.He should not be reappointed.Shikena
Rahma Abdul | 3/15/2012 5:20:00 AM
The former IGP was removed for non-performance,Timpre Sylva was similarly removed for non-performance and many others like that. What is special on Ambassador Oboro to reappoint him ?Is it the looting of Embassy funds?His use of innocent Nigerians to carry illicit drugs on his behalf to Nigeria?His diversion of Embassy funds in to private bank accounts? His method of requesting innocent Nigerians to collect blank paid stamped receipts to hook money in the Embassy without paying them their own share. If Foreign Affairs is not ready and willing to claim refund of the money looted then EFCC should arrest him.No double standard.
Bayelsa Politician | 3/15/2012 6:10:00 AM
PDP committed members in Bayelsa State risked their lives to campaign for President Jonathan,contributed financially to the purse of the party and stood with PDP through thick and thin,did the same to Hon Dickson before he became the Governor of our State only for Chief Felix Oboro,a political prost*t*te who defected to the Labour party to return to PDP fold without any commitment and loyalty to seek for political reappointment.What about those of who worked tirelessly for the success of our great party in our State who are yet to get any appointment?.This jester politician is jocking.Let him take a queue or return to Labour party or the to join the political party that has agreed to fund the expansion of his Fish pond.Chief Oboro is a political jester in our State.
Enitan Onikoyi | 3/17/2012 3:40:00 AM
Ambassador Oboro need not be asked to step down if only he has any dignity left in him. It is his duty to do so without anyone reminding him. How could he hang on; on a job for which his conduct is questionable? It can only happen in Nigeria.
Joy Okoko | 3/17/2012 3:47:00 AM
l ask you Enitan Onikoyi,has any Nigerian Public office holder ever resigned?Look at the ignominous spending of Nigeria's Ambassador in Venezuela including his oil bunkering business,has he resigned?Very soon.Ms.Oteh will become the Finance Minister to justify her spendings and Nigeria's Ambassador in Venezuela, Chief Felix Oboro, will be reappointed to continue with his looting of Embassy funds including the collection of extra passport money under the table?
POLAS KARIS | 3/17/2012 6:02:00 AM
Let the music play on,people will soon see how Ms.Oteh will expose the Parliamentarians who demanded money from her.l hope she kept the cheque stub of the money she gave to the parliamentarian to fight her case. As for Nigeria's Ambassador in Venezuela,he has arrived where he had to arrive after exposing himself by given copies of the query and his response to the political class.By the way,he is yet to account for what happened to the son( RIP), of the Bayelsian he grabbed his land.
Many would be cowards if they had courage enough.
By: roylexi.com