According to sources familiar with what led to the recall of the ambassadors, the event was triggered by the United States’ discomfort with Ambassador Adefuye’s recent “undiplomatic conduct.” Adefuye is said to have adopted a belligerent tone in Nigeria’s bilateral relations with the US in the twilight of the Jonathan administration especially in relation to the Boko Haram insurgency. Indications emerged that Americans were not comfortable with him being involved in President Muhammadu Buhari’s scheduled visit to Washington next week.
It has been revealed that the Deputy Representative of Nigeria at the United Nations mission in New York is expected to lead the diplomatic representation during the visit. This arrangement would suffix as President Buhari who is yet to name a cabinet, has no Minister of Foreign Affairs. During next week’s visit, Nigeria and the U.S. will discuss measures to strengthen and intensify bilateral and international cooperation against terrorism in Nigeria and West-Africa.
The Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity Mr Femi Adesina confirmed yesterday that Buhari will meet Obama at the White House on July 20, and later hold further discussions with the Chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Martin Dempsey and the Deputy Secretary of Defence Robert Work on military and defence cooperation.
On America’s support for Buhari’s government’s war against corruption as well as fresh measures to boost Nigeria-US trade relations, the president would meet with US Vice President Joe Biden and confer with the US Attorney-General Loretta Lynch; the US Secretary of Treasury Jack Lew; the US Secretary of Commerce, Penny Pritzker and the US Trade representative, Michael Froman.
Adesina said Buhari would be received by the US Secretary of State at the State Department in Washington DC and would later meet with the US Senate and Congressional Committees on Foreign Relations as well as the Black Caucus of the US House of Representatives.
The presidential spokesman said before leaving Washington DC, Buhari would address the United States Chamber of Commerce and Corporate Council for Africa. He said the trip would also afford Buhari the opportunity of a reunion with members of the American War College Class of 1980 in which he was a distinguished participant.
Buhari will also host an interactive session with Nigerians in the American Diaspora.
The President will be accompanied by the governors of Imo, Nasarawa, Edo, Borno and Oyo States as well as the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria and Permanent Secretaries of the Federal Ministries of Defence, Foreign Affairs, Industry, Trade and Investment. President Buhari is scheduled to return on 23rd July.