Some former Nigerian Ambassadors and High Commissioner to China and Namibia on Saturday said that Taiwan cannot under any circumstance have an embassy in Nigeria.
The Diplomats, who spoke differently at the Nigeria/China Friendship Association’s 24th Annual General Meeting in Lagos, said that Nigeria cannot have two embassies from China in Nigeria.
They said that it was recently discovered from an online publication that there was a new Taiwanese Ambassador with an embassy in Abuja.
A Nigerian former High Commissioner to Namibia, Amb. Adegboyega Ariyo, said that Nigeria’s foreign policy should continue to enhance relations between Nigeria and China.
He said, “There are currently some move by people with vested interests to cause problems in Nigeria and China’s relations. And this should not be allowed.
“The Federal Government of Nigeria and the National Assembly should urgently wade into this selfish development.
“We have even discovered that some products with China labels in Nigeria, are actually from Taiwan.”
Former Nigerian Ambassador to China, Amb. Jonathan Coker, also said that China would continue to be Nigeria’s ally if both countries would continue to sustain their mutually-beneficial areas of cooperation.
Coker said that it was illegal for Taiwan to appoint an ambassador for Nigeria, as well as even establish an embassy in Nigeria.
Another former Nigerian Ambassador to China, Amb. Sola Onadipe, said that it was imperative for Nigeria to take appropriate moves at investigating the alleged appointment of a Taiwanese Ambassador to Nigeria.
A former Director-General of the Nigerian Institute of International Affairs, Prof Bola Akinterinwa, said that Nigeria cannot leave China and be engaging with Taiwan.
Akinterinwa said that the NICAF would continue to uphold Nigeria’s foreign policy of one China.
He said, “Let me say the position of NICAF is one China, and we are against anyone going to do business with Taiwan.
“We also strongly want to say that Taiwan cannot have a Diplomatic Mission in Abuja. They can only have a Trade Office in Nigeria.”
The high point of the AGM was the election of Chief Jacob Woods as NICAF’s new Chairman, following the death of Amb. Victor Chibundu, on June 8, this year.
Also elected were Amb. Sola Onadipe, as the Association’s Nigerian Vice-chairman; Mr Guo Sun, also as the Chinese Vice-chairman and Dr Tunde Emmanuel as Secretary.
Amb. Adegboyega Ariyo and the daughter of late Amb. Victor Chibundu, Mrs Edith Udeagu, were appointed into the Association’s Board of Trustees.