By Okon Okon
President Muhammadu Buhari has appointed Amb. Babagana Kingibe as his Special Envoy with Cabinet Rank Status to Chad and the Lake Chad Basin region.
The Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Mr Boss Mustapha, made the disclosure in a statement he issued on Monday in Abuja.
“This appointment of a special envoy by the President is in consonance with the resolution of the extraordinary summit of Heads of State and Government of the Lake Chad Basin Commission Member Countries on the situation in Chad on the May 25.
“The special envoy will among others, monitor development in Chad and the Lake Chad Basin region.
“Aid the reconciliation and seamless progress towards returning to democratic rule at the end of the current Transitional Military Council`s rule.
“He will collaborate with member countries and partners in the region with similar initiatives to restore stability, promote peace and security,” he said.
According to him, other responsibilities include promoting any other initiative ancillary to the restoration of peace and security in Chad, the North-East Nigeria and the Lake Chad Basin region.
Mustapha said that President Buhari had, by this appointment demonstrated the determination of Nigeria to lead regional security efforts that would stabilize the Lake Basin region.
He added that the action would bring peace to Lake Chad and ultimately eliminate Boko Haram insurgency in the North-East zone of Nigeria.
“This is also a fulfilment of the President`s promise to Gen. Mahamat Deby Itno, the President of the Transitional Military Council of Lake Chad.
“It is a promise Mr President made to support a seamless progress towards a return to democratic rule when he visited Nigeria in May,” he said.
Kingibe is an accomplished multilingual diplomat, who had at various times served the nation as Federal Permanent Secretary, Secretary to the Constituent Assembly, cabinet minister and SGF in the country.
He had also participated in previous Nigeria-led Chadian reconciliation talks (Kano I & II as well as Lagos I & II).
Kingibe was also chairman of the Social Democratic Party under the Babangida transitional regime and later became the running mate of Chief MKO Abiola in the 12 June 1993 election.
The Maiduguri-born diplomat was born 25 June 1945.