I belong to Africa and will be back soon, says Watson
THE out-going United States (U.S.) Public Diplomacy Officer at the country’s Consulate in Lagos, Rhonda Watson, has said that she belongs to Africa and she will be back to the continent.
Speaking at a retirement party organised for her by the U.S. Consulate General, Lagos, Watson said that although she felt accomplished in her career, her best is yet to come. “I know we will win, you just wait. My new life will be guarded by my spirit and where my spirit leads me, I will go.”
Watson, who had served the U.S. consulate in Canada, Belgium, Israel and Republic of Benin, added that she did not have any challenge doing her job in Nigeria.
She said: “It was basically traffic in Lagos that circumscribed our movement. I do not think I have fully experienced this country because of those constraints, but I look forward to coming back in a private capacity where I can go where I want to go and do what I want to do in a private capacity.
“I think Nigeria has a lot to capitalise on. If we could direct the energy to positive things to move the country and the people forward, this country has so much promise that is yet to be exploited.
“I really love the opportunity that I had to make impact here, as well as other places. Nigerians are warm-hearted and very giving and I appreciate the love here, not only tonight but through out my stay here.”
Her husband, Nicolas, described her as an accomplished diplomat, saying: “I am fortunate to have Rhonda as my wife. This event is like the end of Part One of her life. Now, she will be a really businesswoman. I like to thank you for all you have done to humanity.
Also, the Acting Consul General, U.S. Embassy in Lagos, Dehab Ghebreab, who recalled that two weeks ago they said goodbye to the former Consul-General, Jerry Hawkins, said it is really hard to say another goodbye to Watson.
He said: “It will take hours to list everything that she has done. How she has helped young people in their education, empowering women. She has helped thousands of young women entrepreneurs to save money to build their own houses so that they will not have to rent a house.
“She has travelled to many states. She has travelled to many universities explaining American cultures, talking to young people about starting their business. She is a teacher and educator helping people to improve on their writings. She is doing her last assignment after working for 23 years.”