Onyeama did not refuse to appear before Reps, says Foreign Ministry

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* Geoffrey Inyeama
Nigeria Foreign Affairs Minister Geoffrey Onyeama speaks at the Oslo Humanitarian Conference on Nigeria and the Lake Chad Region in Oslo, Norway February 24, 2017. NTB Scanpix/Haakon Mosvold Larsen/via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS – THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NORWAY OUT. NO COMMERCIAL OR EDITORIAL SALES IN NORWAY. – RTS104PN

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has dismissed allegations that its minister, Geoffrey Onyeama refused to appear before the House of Representatives Committee on Foreign Affairs.

Mr Ferdinard Nwonye, spokesperson for the ministry, made this known in a statement on Monday in Abuja.

According to him, far from the allegation making the rounds, the minister holds the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila and the National Assembly in the highest esteem and will not snub it for any reason.

The ministry said it was not true that the Minister of Foreign Affairs refused to appear before the House plenary and the House Committee on Foreign Affairs to brief them on his efforts to address the plight of Nigerians in the Republic of South Africa.

”The ministry wishes to inform the public that there is no iota of truth whatsoever in such a charge,” it said in the statement.

Nwonye said that the truth of the matter was that by a letter dated Sept. 9, by the Chief of Staff to the Speaker, the minister was invited to a meeting.

He said that the meeting was with the Leadership of the House of Representatives scheduled to hold on Wednesday, Sept. 11, 2019 at 11.00am in the Speaker’s Office.

Nwonye added that the Office of the minister, however, wrote to the Chief of Staff to the Speaker, informing him that  Onyeama would be attending the weekly meeting of the Federal Executive Council at that time and that he looked forward to a meeting at a time to be mutually agreed on.

According to Nwonye, the minister and the ministry respect the institution of the National Assembly.

(NAN)

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