Thursday, 9 December 2010

News Release: On Wikileaks And All That

Wikileaks is the new travesty that international diplomacy has to deal with. Nigeria is no exception.

The point to be made is that the accounts of meetings between President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan and US diplomats are essentially third party narratives, and are largely inaccurate.

The President, in those tempestuous days during which the nation tottered on the brink, held meetings, and then more meetings, with different groups, the diplomatic community inclusive.

The President met with different diplomats and special envoys who offered different suggestions on a way out of the impasse that our late leader's health had imposed on the nation. We note that this account is largely silent on these suggestions.

Instead, what is served up is an unfair account severely impacted by selective perception and individual expectations. For instance, how can it be said that a man who had been a Deputy Governor, an Acting Governor, a governor, a Vice President, and then Acting President could have described himself as “lacking in administrative experience”. That the President holds a Ph.D, was a lecturer for 10 years, and was an Assistant Director at the defunct Oil Mineral Producing Areas Development Commission, do not make the statement less rankling.

This only goes to show that the report itself is a souped up version of the standard conversation that takes place in such meetings. We find this account as wholly unfortunate, and we are only employing the best of diplomatic finesse in that statement!

Ima Niboro
Special Adviser to the President,
Media and Publicity

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