After the Romanian ambassador to Kenya allegedly compared them to monkeys while they were in attendance at a meeting in Nairobi, the Africa group within the UN declared that it will never again cooperate with him in those forums.
Additionally, the organization wanted a public, unqualified apology to Africans.
Following reports that followed a meeting at the UN office in the capital of Kenya on April 26 when a monkey appeared at the conference room window, Dragos Viorel Tigau was this past weekend called back by the Romanian foreign ministry. Tigau allegedly said, “The African group has joined us,” according to a memo from the South Sudanese embassy in Kenya.
Romania to recall the ambassador
The event was just made known to the Romanian foreign ministry this week, it claimed over the weekend, adding that it has “started a procedure to recall its ambassador.”
Racist behaviours or remarks were “absolutely unacceptable,” the statement continued, adding that “we deeply regret this situation and offer our apologies to all who have been affected.”
Chol Ajongo, the South Sudanese ambassador to Kenya, wrote to the director general of the United Nations Office on May 31 in his capacity as acting dean of the Africa group, expressing his indignation, horror, and disgust at what he described the ambassador’s “disparaging and utterly unacceptable remarks.”
Additionally, he requested that the ambassador issue a formal, public apology. He had previously said that, in the absence of this, the Africa group would boycott any event that Tigau attended. In regards to issues involving environmental preservation and UN habitat, the letter stated that it was “not prepared to participate in the same spaces” as the ambassador.
He said that Tigau, the regional group’s representative for the eastern European states, had called the conference. At the moment of the alleged comment, one of the delegates scolded Tigau and insisted that he recant it and apologise.
Ajongo cited UN rules requiring employees to meet accepted norms, such as non-discrimination, by, among other things, showing respect for all cultures. He claimed that the ambassador’s comments were beneath his position as a diplomat and clearly disregarded the ethos and dignity of humanity.
Previous similar incidents by the ambassador
His conduct has drawn criticism from Romanian media, which claims that ambassadors’ comments have embarrassed the nation before. After making anti-Semitic remarks about Jewish bosses and doubting the morality of same-sex unions, Romania’s ambassador to Armenia was recalled in 2014.
The invitations to a luncheon at its Paris embassy unintentionally included disparaging descriptions of some guests, calling them, among other things, “ghastly” and “undesirable.” Bucharest apologised for the error the following year.