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UN Family in Nigeria Bids UNFPA Representative, Dr Diene Keita Farewell

Abuja 11th June, 2018. At a send forth party organized by the United Nations Country Team and UNFPA Country Office at Transcorp Hilton, Abuja, the UN Family bid farewell to one of her own, Dr. Diene, Keita, a fine diplomat and UNFPA Representative. The event was well attended by government officials and diplomatic community in Abuja, as well as heads of UN Agencies and their spouses led by the UN Resident Coordinator, Mr Edward Kallon.

The Honourable Minister of Health, Prof Isaac Adewole expressed his appreciations for all the contributions of Dr. Diene Keita during her short tenure in Nigeria. He said the people of Nigeria will forever cherish and appreciate her contributions.  He assured her that the strong partnership and relationship with UNFPA will continue even as she leaves. On a lighter note he said he owes her a dinner and that even if it has to be  in the country she is assuming her new position.

The Hon. Minister Women Affairs who was represented by the Permanent Secretary thanked Dr Diene Keita for coming to support them on the Chibok girls’ rehabilitation and partnering with them on ending girl child marriage, gender based violence and FGM. The Ministry she said will forever remember her contributions to women and girls of Nigeria. Similarly Rotimi Olawole of Youth hub Africa, who spoke on behalf of the coalition of young people and UNFPA Youth advisory board, commended the representative for her passion for young people’s wellbeing. He wished her more success as she continues in service to humanity. He concluded by saying that the young people of Guinea will definitely feel her impact.

Mr. Osaretin Adonri UNFPA Assistant Representative, who spoke on behalf of the country office, described the representative as a fine diplomat, an astute administrator, who places the welfare of the staff as top priority. He said in just twelve calendar months Dr. Diene Keita touched the lives of each staff in one way or the other as a mother, sister and most of all as a diligent professional. ‘’I just want to take this moment to let you know how interesting it was working with someone like you’ he said. He also thanked the out-going Representative for her kindness and care which sometimes went beyond the call of duty. While reiterating how much the staff will miss her, he wished her the best of luck and continued success in her new position.

 Other dignitaries who graced the occasion include representatives of the Office of the Vice President, Office of the Wife of Mr. President, Aisha Muhammadu Buhari Foundation (Future Assured), the Country Director of KOICA, USAID, World Bank, Representatives of Minister Planning and Budgets, Foreign Affairs and members of the senior advisory Board of UNFPA including youth’s groups.

In an emotionally laden remarks, Diene Keita thanked everyone for the honour of a very well organized send forth. She paid tributes to the UNFPA staff in Nigeria, the government, development partners and the diplomatic community, without which she would not have been able to make her modest contributions. She assured everyone that she will ‘not be too far from them’ as her new position will enable her to interact with the peoples of Nigeria (and UNFPA) in the community of States, especially in conferences and programmes organized by ECOWAS. 

Dr. Diene Keita came to Nigeria as the Representative in May 2017. She is moving on to her home country, Guinea as the Minister for Cooperation and Africa Integration. She will be greatly missed in the country office and the development country community at large.