The Foreign Affairs Ministry says its silent diplomatic efforts in the past few weeks culminated in the release of Zainab Aliyu and Ibrahim Abubakar arrested by Saudi authority for a drug-related offence.
The ministry said in a statement by the Acting spokesman, Friday Akpan, in Abuja stressed that the intervention by President Muhammadu Buhari directing that all efforts be exerted to secure their release facilitated the expedited final favourable resolution of the matter.
While explaining further its efforts on the release of the two Nigerians, the ministry stated that on receipt of the information on their arrest, the Nigerian Consulate in Jeddah intervened. It stated that the Nigerian Mission in Saudi then requested for a full investigation to ascertain the innocence of Zainab Aliyu and Ibrahim Abubakar.
“The outcome of the investigation and subsequent trial of the suspects confirmed the innocence of the two Nigerians.
“The Consulate General of Nigeria in Jeddah, upon instruction from Headquarters, therefore sent series of Diplomatic Notes to the Saudi Foreign Ministry informing of the arrest of members of the syndicate in Kano and forwarding the report of the NDLEA investigation and court proceeding.”
The ministry commended the Saudi government, through its Embassy in Abuja and officials of Saudi Foreign Ministry, for cooperating with Nigeria in the eventual resolution of the matter.
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