Gov’t Sells Diplomatic Missions - Foreign
October 26, 2004
Liberia’s Foreign Minister Thomas Nimely Yaya has confirmed
the sales of two Liberian embassies in Europe and West Africa.
Addressing an intellectual forum recently organized by a group of media personnel in Monrovia, Minister Yaya disclosed that government was constrained to sell the two premises in London, England, and Lagos, Nigeria for what he described as poor conditions and the urgent need of relocation.
According to Mr. Yaya, the London City Council has earlier complained about the poor structure housing the mission and demanded that the Liberian government do something to improve the condition of the structure.
He said, it was based upon the pressure from the city authorities that such structure could not remain in the diplomatic quarter of the city.
The Foreign Minister further disclosed that the building was then sold for two million Europs to renovate a five-story building which will be used as a new Liberian Embassy.
According to Minister Yaya, the building has been completed and awaiting dedication soon.
On the question of the embassy in Lagos, Nigeria, Minister Yaya maintained that Lagos is no longer useful to Nigeria in terms of housing foreign missions and it was needless for Liberia to continue having its embassy there. According to him, all foreign missions in the Federal Republic of Nigerian are being transferred from Lagos to Abuja, where parcels of land have been allotted to every country for the sole purpose of relocating their embassies.
He noted that Liberia had to sell the old embassy building in Lagos and hired the services of a construction firm to construct a beautiful structure on its portion of land in Abuja.
Meanwhile, Minister Yaya has disclosed plans by government to reduce the number of its foreign missions aboard. He said some of the staffers in the foreign service will be replaced by those he referred to as “young and energetic staffers.”
Minister Yaya observed that the idea of maintaining missions in almost every country of the world was too costly for the government of Liberia.
According to him to recall an ambassador and his family to Liberia will cost government about between 40 to 50 thousands United States dollars.
Minister Yaya further disclosed that government intends to assign one ambassador to cover two or three countries bordering each other as is being done by some developed countries to cut down cost.