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Russia Invasion: Nigeria May Resort To More Borrowings, Debts, Hunger, Others — Ex-UN Envoy Warns

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A former Nigeria Ambassador to Ukraine, Amb. Frank Isoh, has warned that the ongoing Russia/Ukraine war will have negative impacts on global affairs, particularly in Africa and Nigeria as a whole.

The ex-UN envoy raised concerns over the ripple effects of the war which has paved the way for an increase in the prices of goods and food, particularly wheat of which both Russia and Ukraine are substantial exporters.

Isoh stated this in his paper presentation at the Diplomatic Dialogue organised by the Department of International Relations and Diplomacy, Afe Babalola University, Ado-Ekiti, (ABUAD), on Tuesday, in Ado-Ekiti, with the theme: ‘Russia’s Invasion of Ukraine and the Emerging Global Dynamics: Implications for Africa and the World.’

Isoh believes that Nigeria would have not been caught in the quagmire if the government had developed the gas sector for revenue generation.

He said: “For Nigeria, there is likely to be used in fiscal deficit as a result of mounting subsidy payment on petrol. To meet these mounting subsidy payments the country may result in more borrowings and more debts.

In an ideal situation, we should be happy that more money is coming to our coffers. We would have been in a situation to be a saviour of Europe to cut off Russia’s gas but we are not there because of the weak state of development in the gas sector.”

He added that Africa’s silence hinges on maintaining a neutral position due to the bilateral relationship that exists between some African countries with Russia.

The diplomatic expert allayed fears that the recent indices by the United Nations on the possibility of Africa and the world experiencing hunger, increase in the cost of energy, gas price and more importantly, students seeking medical education will have negative implications.

“There is a dilemma here and we cannot take the position the US is taking but we can in support of International Law. Coming out to condemn Russia may not be ideal for them, they may want to play a neutral position. The position being adopted by Africa is in keeping with realism.

“The UN had only recently indicated the real possibility of Africa and the developing world experiencing higher levels of hunger as a result of this conflict.

“Another significant impact, particularly on Africa, is in the area of education. Those students have already had their education disrupted for an uncertain length of time. Due to Europe’s big dependence on Russian natural gas price increase of over 20% since the war started has led to higher cost of energy for homes and industries.”

Similarly, the Founder and Chancellor, ABUAD, Aare Afe Babalola called on the Federal Government to appeal to the African Union to join forces in calling for a cease-fire.

Babalola described the actions of Russia as uncalled for despite Ukraine’s court action calling for a cease-fire before the International Court of Justice which has been reduced to a ‘toothless bulldog.’

He said: “I take this opportunity to appeal to the Federal Government to influence African Union to join the Pope as well as other religious leaders to appeal to Putin and Ukraine to cease-fire so that this matter can be settled.

“Ukraine rightly filed an action before the International Court of Justice (ICJ) demanding that the court should order a cease-fire. The court ordered Russia to stop the war but Russia declined to do so and the war therefore continues. You can see that the ICJ is no more than a toothless bulldog.”

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