- Nigeria's ambassador to the Benin Republic is Lieutenant General Tukur Buratai, the immediate past Chief of Army Staff
- Buratai's appointment was confirmed in a statement by the federal ministry of foreign affairs on Tuesday, June 22
- Borno-born Buratai, 60, is Nigeria's longest-serving Chief of Army Staff after serving the country from 2015 to 2021
- Moreover, the former Chief of Defence Staff, Abayomi Gabriel Olonisakin has been appointed the country's ambassador to Cameroon
FCT, Abuja - Former Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Lieutenant General Tukur Yusuf Buratai (rtd), has been appointed as the Nigerian ambassador to the Benin Republic.
Also, the immediate past Chief of Defence Staff, General Abayomi Gabriel Olonisakin (rtd) has been appointed as the Nigerian ambassador to Cameroon.
A Facebook post from the ministry of foreign affairs to this regard read:
"Today, the honourable minister of foreign affairs, H.E. Geoffrey Onyeama presented Letters of Credence to the Ambassador-Designate of Nigeria to the Republic of Cameroon, Amb. Abayomi Gabriel Olonisakin and the Ambassador-Designate of Nigeria to the Republic of Benin, Amb. Tukur Yusufu Buratai."
From military to diplomacy
At a brief ceremony in Abuja on Tuesday, June 22, the minister of foreign affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama, presented letters of credence to the ex-service chiefs.
This was disclosed in a statement by Mr. Kimiebi Ebienfa, information officer in the ministry.
A fulfilled military career without blemish
Meanwhile, a security expert, Mark Bonaventure, has said the change of service chiefs earlier in the year was meant to rejig the operational strategies.
According to a piece written by Bonaventure and published by the Vanguard newspaper, the ex-service chiefs were not relieved of their duties because of non-performance.
In a related development, a security analyst, Idoko Ainoko has debunked the claim that Buratai failed to pay soldiers of the Nigerian army their allowances for uniforms, boots, and skills since 2017.
Ainoko said the reports that army personnel were denied their entitlement under the uniforms and boots allowances and scarce skills allowance approved by President Muhammadu Buhari since 2017 is mischievous.
A statement signed by Ainoko and seen by Legit.ng said the news report had no sense in it and was aimed at being used as a tool to assassinate the character of the former chief of army staff.
Recall that a group, Nigeria First Movement, recently alleged that there are well-orchestrated plans by some individuals to blackmail Buratai and other former service chiefs.
Speaking at a press conference attended by Legit.ng in Abuja, the secretary-general of the group, Richard Augustine said a grand plan is already in motion to belittle the personalities of the past service chiefs and their records while in office.
Augustine said the group is surprised that anyone in his or her right mind would harbour such a plot irrespective of the sacrifices made by the service chiefs during their tenure in office.