Clarify diplomatic row with Morocco, APC tells Jonathan

The All Progressives Congress (APC) has asked the Jonathan Administration to come clean with Nigerians on the cause of the ongoing diplomatic row between Nigeria and Morocco that has forced the Kingdom to recall its Ambassador to Nigeria, while portraying Nigeria as a liar.

Mohammed VI and President Jonathan

Mohammed VI and President Jonathan

In a statement issued in Lagos on Thursday by its National Publicity Secretary, Lai Mohammed, the party said President Jonathan must in particular clarify the thorny issue of whether or not he spoke with King Mohammed VI of Morocco.

‘’According to published reports, the Nigerian Foreign Affairs Ministry had said President Jonathan spoke on the telephone with the Moroccan King.  But the Kingdom, in a very scathing statement, said no such conversation took place.

‘’The statement said ‘Morocco is surprised at the incredible twist given by Nigeria to an alleged phone conversation that never took place between HM King Mohammed VI and Nigerian President’.

‘’This is very serious because, in effect, Morocco has called Nigeria a liar. Therefore, it behoves President Jonathan to personally intervene to address such an international embarrassment.

‘’The questions seeking answers are “Did President Jonathan speak with the Moroccan King? If not, who is responsible for this egregious misrepresentation that has embarrassed a whole country and its leader?’’

APC said Nigeria, because of its much-acclaimed leadership role in Africa, must not allow such a diplomatic faux pas to go without being addressed, saying other countries are keenly watching the row between Nigeria and Morocco.

‘’Before anyone accuses us of politicising this issue, we make bold to say that we, the APC, and indeed all Nigerians are stakeholders in the Nigeria project. When Morocco branded Nigeria a liar, over whether or not our President spoke with the North African nation’s King, it did not mention PDP or APC. It made a collective reference to Nigeria.

‘’This is why we feel strongly that this issue must be addressed urgently. Until then, all Nigerians, irrespective of their political leanings, will remain liars in the eyes of the international community,’’ the party said.

Meanwhile, the Senator representing Osun West Senatorial District at the upper chamber of the National Assembly, Mudasiru Hussain, has slammed the Federal Government over the withdrawal of the Moroccan envoy to Nigeria.

Hussain warned President Jonathan to stop embarrassing Nigeria before the international community.

He said “the diplomatic row between the two countries would not have degenerated to the withdrawal of ambassador had the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, acting under the directive of the presidency, not lied to the world that President Jonathan had a conversation with the Moroccan King.”

He said: “It is embarrassing to see that Nigeria, the supposed giant of Africa is being threatened by small, small countries. And we cannot do away with that because the current leaders of the country, led by President Jonathan is even embarrassing us.

“The Moroccan King turned down a request by President Jonathan for a telephone conversation and possibly, an invitation to Nigeria, describing the move as inappropriate. But Nigerian government, apparently acting under the directive of the Presidency issued a statement, lying that there was a conversation between the president and the Moroccan King.

“The Moroccan government saw the lies of the Nigerian government, describing it as unethical and irresponsible. That is why the Morrocan ambassador to Nigeria was withdrawn. The international communities now know clearly that the Federal Government is a liar and that President Jonathan’s administration is full of deceit and lies.”

Hussain said President Jonathan has allowed his ambition to rubbish Nigeria’s image and portray the country as one that does not have a responsible leader.

The senator called on Nigerians to ensure they put a stop to the PDP-led government of deceit come  March 28 by voting for Buhari/Osinbajo of the APC.

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