The Nigerians in Diaspora Organisation (NIDO), Ghana chapter, has provided details of the attacks on Nigerian residential buildings in Ghana.
In a phone interview with NAN, Vice-President of NIDO-Ghana, Mr Kingsley Attoe, stated that unknown armed men stormed the Nigerian High Commissioner’s residence in Accra, Ghana, with bulldozers and demolished four units of the nearly completed four-bedroom block of flats, on the property on the night of Friday, June 19.
At about 10 pm on June 19, the men entered the premises and ordered the Charge D’ Affairs to leave or be bulldozed. She left after calling the police headquarters, which was just a few meters away. Though there was no record of injury, the security operatives were harassed.
According to Attoe, the demolished buildings which were still under construction were meant to house staff and visiting diplomats to the High Commission upon completion.
Despite the reports made with the Police, no arrests have been made as of Monday morning.
“The information we have is that the High Commission was not informed, the guy who is said to be a businessman claims he owns the land title in 2019.
“We are petitioning the Foreign Affairs Committee, the Presidency in Nigeria, National Assembly and other relevant authorities in Nigeria, we need to act fast,” Attoe stated.
Attoe said further that Ghana is a sister nation to Nigeria and citizens of both countries do a lot of business together, hence their shock over the attack.
House of Reps response
Meanwhile, the House of Representatives Committee on Foreign Affairs has said Ghana must face the consequences of its actions and inactions.
In a statement by its chairman, Rep. Yusuf Buba on Monday, the committee said the action infringed the International Rights of Nigeria and signifies an invasion of Nigeria’s sovereignty.
The lawmaker said that it was a gross violation of all known conventions and treaties on diplomatic relations and friendship between both countries, and Nigeria cannot let this one pass silently in the name of diplomacy.
“While the demolition lasted, several frantic efforts were said to have been made by members of the Nigeria Mission to report what was ongoing to both the Ghana Police Service and their Foreign Affairs Ministry.
“In spite of those efforts, no reprieve, we were told, came the way of the Nigerian diplomats. We further learned that, even when the Police finally arrived at the scene, they could not do anything,’’ he said.
Buba noted that that the present Nigeria mission in Accra, constituted four hectares of land that was officially allocated to Nigeria as part of the agreement to situate the mission of the Federal Republic of Nigeria in Ghana, and Nigeria possessed all necessary legal titles and certifications, including site plan, payment receipts and allocation papers from the Ghanaian authorities in respect of the land.
“The action, and indeed, inaction which makes the authorities complicit in the act, the Ghanaian people violated many an article in the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations of 1949 and, therefore, must be sanctioned,” he added.
Ghana Govt reacts
The Ghanaian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration has issued a statement confirming the attacks by unidentified individuals who breached the premises of the High Commission and demolished the property under construction.
“The Ministry views with concern this development which is a breach of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations (VCDR, 1961).
“Investigations are ongoing to unravel the facts of the matter and bring the perpetrators to book. Meanwhile, the Ghanaian government has beefed-up security at the said facility and the situation is under control,” it said in its reaction.
The ministry assured that the Ghana government will do all to ensure upholding the rule of law, and the safety of members of the Diplomatic Corps in Ghana.