Tuesday, 25 September 2018

Meet 82-Year-Old Nigeria’s Ambassador To The United States Sylvanus Nsofor & Wife

Image result for , Justice Sylvanus Nsofor who is Nigeria's ambassador to US
Sylvanus Adiewere Nsofor, a retired justice from Nigeria’s Court of Appeal, assumed the office of his country’s ambassador to the United States on November 13, 2017. It’s Nsofor’s first ambassadorial posting.

Nsofor was born March 17, 1935, in Oguta, Imo State, Nigeria. He graduated from London’s now-defunct Holborn College of Law in 1962 and added an LL.M from the London School of Economics in 1964.

He began teaching at Holborn College of Law in 1964 and went into private practice the following year. In 1977, he was appointed to the bench in Nigeria and served as a judge of the Imo state High Court. He spent the last 13 years of his career, until mandatory retirement in 2005, as a justice on the Court of Appeal of Nigeria.

H.E. Hon. Justice Sylvanus Adiewere Nsofor

In 2003, Nsofor was the dissenting vote in a three-justice panel in a contested presidential race between Muhammadu Buhari, presidential candidate of the All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP), and the incumbent Olusegun Obasanjo, the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). Nsofor wrote that the PDP had engaged in intimidation tactics and violence: “I find that the substantial non-compliance with the mandatory electoral law amounts to no election. I also find that there was violence perpetrated by President Obasanjo...May Nigeria never and never again see a black Saturday like April 19, 2003.” However, Obasanjo was confirmed as president for a second term despite Nsofor’s objections. Twelve years later, however, Buhari was elected president of Nigeria.
Image result for , Justice Sylvanus Nsofor who is Nigeria's ambassador to US Buhari first appointed Nsofor an ambassador in 2017. His confirmation hearing on March 1, 2017, didn’t go well. He refused to recite the national anthem when asked to by one senator, Gbenga Ashafa, who was concerned with Nsofor’s age and fitness to serve. When it was suggested that, at age 82, Nsofor might be too old to be an ambassador, he replied: “Go and ask Mugabe who is still working.” Robert Mugabe was forced out as Zimbabwe’s strongman leader in November 2017 at age 93. Nsofor’s nomination was denied. When asked later if he was posted to France how he would deal with 39-year-old French President Emmanuel Macron, Nsofor said, “I will respect him despite his age.”
Image result for , Justice Sylvanus Nsofor who is Nigeria's ambassador to US

However, President Buhari renominated Nsofor at the end of March and after a more subdued appearance before the Senate, he was confirmed to be an ambassador on June 7.

Nsofor is married and has three children.

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