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REVEALED: How Nigerian mission embarrassed Buhari before Pope Francis at UN meeting

REVEALED: How Nigerian mission embarrassed Buhari before Pope Francis at UN meeting
September 27
18:47 2015

The Nigerian mission inexplicably messed up the itinerary of President Muhammadu Buhari at the United Nations General Assembly meeting in New York on Friday, TheCable can report.

The president missed a very important event on Boko Haram and internally displaced persons (IDPs) and was also prevented from meeting with Pope Francis because he was not properly briefed by the Nigerian UN mission staff.

The pope delivered a speech at the general assembly on Friday at 10am.

Not only was Buhari made to come in late to the meeting because of untidy arrangements, he also took a wrong gate rather than the one reserved for presidents and heads of state.


He was subsequently prevented from seeing the pope by security operatives because of his late arrival.

Buhari came in while other presidents and heads of government had already lined up to shake hands with the pope, and he was prevented by security operatives from joining in.‎

Presidency had sought to explain away the missed meeting as not being part of the official events lined up for the president.


“The meeting at which Nigeria was reportedly absent was not one of the official events of the United Nations for which President Muhammadu Buhari and his modest delegation are in New York,” Garba Shehu, a presidential spokesman, had said.

But not only was it an official event, the focus was on the Lake Chad Basin and the effects of insurgency in which Nigeria’s full participation was expected.

The listed UN events had the item: “The Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) will hold a side event on food security and humanitarian consequences of conflicts-driven displacement in the Lake Chad Basin region.”

It was scheduled for 3pm US time (8pm Nigerian time), but ‎the president’s programme prepared by the Nigerian mission did not list it as one of the events he should attend.


‎The session was titled “Lake Chad Basin at A Cross Road: Addressing Urgent Humanitarian Needs in An Overlooked Crisis”.

A high-level government representative of the Nigerian Government was expected to be at the event which was organised by the United Nations Office for the Co-ordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA) and chaired by Stephen O’Brien, undersecretary-general of the UN.‎

Witnesses to both incidents described as “embarrassing and unacceptable” the attitude of the Nigerian mission staff which led to media backlash back home and on the social media.

The witnesses also blamed the presidential media team for rushing to the press to defend ‎the president’s absence at a very crucial meeting whose discussion was on a matter in which Nigeria has been worst hit by the activities of the insurgents.


Meanwhile, the event Buhari eventually attended in place of the one on the insurgency was not only poorly attended but was full of protocol breaches, as the president was already seated before other speakers started strolling in.



  1. Braun
    Braun September 27, 21:43


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  2. Remi
    Remi September 27, 21:53

    Govt had previously withdrawn all ambassadors across d world. It is dangerous to rely on civil servants!

    Reply to this comment
    TRUTH MASTER September 27, 22:09

    Had the President put his team in place, this may not have happened. The Foreign Minister would have gone ahead to put things in place. Plus the sooner the President changes appoints a new Permanent Representative to the UN, the better.

    Reply to this comment
  4. Emmanuel Maduagwu
    Emmanuel Maduagwu September 27, 22:22

    Blame the lousy Nigerian Government outing and mess at the on-going United Nations Assembly on Mr. President’s feet for putting nepotism first before meritocracy in choosing his team. The results are now showing that his team which, as he confessed is made up mostly of his close associates from the far north and apparently has substantial family connections to his lineage, may not after all be capable. I am indeed sorry for the Nigerian Nation!

    Reply to this comment
    • August January
      August January September 28, 12:00

      Bigot! Is Buhari’s team the one presently working in Nigerian missions overseas? The men still working there are your Jonathan’s incompetent fellows

      Reply to this comment
      • Blessing ike
        Blessing ike September 28, 17:49

        @August January, you are the most bigot and brainless. you are still bathing with Jonathan’s left-over-wash cloths ? Grow up, Buhari can and will not take the blames of whatever happened to any other person other than himself because HE IS INCOMPITENT. What has the present regime of Buhari done in terms of progress since he the 29th of May 2015 for a better Nigeria……..NOTHING. May be Jonathan made his time table and schedules ?

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      • Dele
        Dele September 29, 17:40

        Let me remind that the Head of the Nigerian Mission Prof Joy Ugwu was not appointed by former President Jonathan. Just for your knowledge

        Reply to this comment
    • Idoni George
      Idoni George September 28, 12:20

      I believe people should be well informed about issues before coming out to public space like this to exhibit their ignorance. You are definitely one of them. Many of you have been so blinded by the “Igbo” sentiment that you have refused to see beyond your myopic thinking. What has the president’s appointments so far got to do with the work of career diplomats that messed up the President’s outing?

      Reply to this comment
      • kiza
        kiza September 28, 18:05

        Little, parochial mind; wake up! Stop this innate Igbo hatred in you

        Reply to this comment
        • yinkuze
          yinkuze September 28, 20:28

          Nobody hate igbos. They are the ones that hated others because of their parochial attitudes.

          Reply to this comment
      • Blessing ike
        Blessing ike September 28, 18:13

        @ Idoni George, did you hear yourself out before going to the public space….? I hope not. The President himself should be a career diplomat too. Or he should use those he feels he trusted within his specified appointments otherwise, he should go outside his cocoon minus (The Igbo) and pick some one like you who is a village-career-diplomats to do the job I am sure there would be a big difference other than what we have seen so far. What am I trying to tell you is that appointments has a lot to do with the messed up outing and a lot more embarrassments are ahead.

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      • Dele
        Dele September 29, 17:32

        The Presidency’s response blaming the Nigerian Mission is not correct. The Nigerian President and His Team usually is given a handbook of the Programme of Events for study and chose which to participate. The Nigerian Mission must have delivered that document to the President who may not have had time to go through it and revert to the Mission to direct as appropriate. Surpriingly they are passing the blame to the Mission. Nigerian Presidents have been attending UN Events. The same Mission manages the process all these while. We should learn to accept responsibilities even in the face of failure. Are we now saying that the Nigerian Mission is being corrupt and the President should commence probe of the Mission and subsequently sack the Permanent Representative?

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    OPEN TRUTH COVERED September 27, 22:29

    This is exactly what Nigerians need to learn the hard way

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  6. ngozim
    ngozim September 28, 01:46


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  7. Mockme
    Mockme September 28, 03:16

    The Nigerian mission and embassies are inglorious houses of incompetence. They can’t even issue Visas in due time. That these guys live abroad and cannot learn the efficiency of their host countries tells you that something is wrong with the mentality of the average Nigerian civil servant.

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  8. Christopher Ilogho
    Christopher Ilogho September 28, 08:34

    Let’s be patient until we get details. There must be reasons for the mix up.

    Reply to this comment
  9. ezeloma1
    ezeloma1 September 28, 15:02

    did you make time to listen to the live broadcast of that event? obviously they organizers were surprise that Nigerian leaders were not present, could they be surprise if our present was not needed moreover Nigeria is at the cardinal point of any boko haram issue, any propose solution to the menace should not have be neglected if really our leader (BUHARI) has no hidden agenda with the terrorist group.

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