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Nigeria summons Ghana’s High Commissioner over diplomatic properties in Accra

THE Nigerian government on Monday summoned Iva Denoo, the Chargè d’ Affaires of the High Commission of Ghana to Nigeria, over the demolition of a section of the Nigerian Embassy in Accra, Ghana.

Geoffrey Onyeama, Nigerian Minister of Foreign Affairs, revealed this in a Twitter post stating that the Ghanian High Commissioner should give an “urgent explanation” on the latest attacks on its diplomatic properties in Accra.

“Summoned the Chargè d’ Affaires of the High Commission of #Ghana to Nigeria, Ms Iva Denoo to demand urgent explanation on the recent attacks on a residential building in our diplomatic premises and reinforcement of security around diplomatic premises and staff,” Onyeama tweeted.

Last week, a yet-to-be-identified man with some armed guards had used a bulldozer to demolish a section of the Nigerian High Commission which was being constructed as a house staff and visitors of the Nigerian diplomatic office in Ghana.

The Ghanaian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration had affirmed in a statement that the unidentified individuals had allegedly breached the premises of the Nigerian High Commission and demolished the property under construction at about 10.30 p.m.

“The Ministry views with concern this development which is a breach of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations. Investigations are ongoing to unravel the facts of the matter and bring the perpetrators to book, ” a section of the statement read.

In January, Ghana’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs had claimed that the Nigerian Government failed to renew the lease of the affected property after the expiration thus, “the property reverted to the state in compliance with Article 258 of Ghana’s 1992 Constitution.”

However, Nigeria’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs clarified in a statement that property under reference was in use by the Federal Ministry of Finance, since 1957, on leasehold and was later bequeathed to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs,” the statement read.

Tensions between both countries have been high in recent times after Nigerian-owned businesses in Ghana were shut down in November 2019, affecting over 70 businesses.

The Ghana Union of Traders Association, GUTA, stated that foreign retailers had breached Section 27 of the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre (GIPC) Act 865, that mandates, “the sale of goods or provision of services in a market, petty trading or hawking or selling of goods in a stall at any place,” must be reserved only for Ghanaian citizens.

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