The Federal Government has come out to say that it is planning to review the operations of some of its embassies abroad as well as the Technical Aid Corps (TAC) scheme.
Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama, revealed this as a recent guest on News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) Forum in Abuja.
According to him, the review became compulsory because of the dwindling resources of Nigeria and the harsh consequences of the coronavirus pandemic.
He added that even if the government earlier considered the closure of some of its embassies, the embassies will now be rationalized and complete closure will be avoided.
His words, “I wouldn’t say the resources have improved but yes we are in a process of trying to rationalise.
“What we have discovered is that the process is actually more expensive closing down an embassy than to actually keep it going.
“The cost is huge to close down, so, we had to revisit it.
“When you put into a balance our interest in having presence in countries around the world to promote our economy, security and other vital national interests and our budgetary realities and limitations, we are looking at just rationalising those embassies rather than outright closure – having a lot of smart missions.
“We feel that would be more cost effective than outright closure,” he said.
“Hopefully, we will be able to sustain it because it is a sacrifice on our part; but the host countries also contribute through accommodation.
“We will have a review and if we need to downsize it slightly because of budgetary reasons we will.
“But the principle is a good one and it is something we have no intention of completely stopping,”