Former Minister of National Education Pap NDiaye, ousted from the government on Thursday July 20, has been appointed French Ambassador to the Council of Europe in Strasbourg, the only French diplomatic representation located in France.
The news was made official by the Elysée in the report of the Council of Ministers. Former Minister of National Education Pap Ndiaye becomes ambassador, permanent representative of France to the Council of Europe. He will take up his duties on 1 August in Strasbourg, where the Council of Europe’s headquarters are located.
A 57-year-old academic by training, Pap Ndiaye remained at the head of the Ministry of National Education for 14 months. This specialist in the social history of the United States and minorities, but inexperienced in politics, has failed to make his mark in his ministry, remaining in the shadow of an omnipresent President of the Republic on the school file .
In Strasbourg, Pap Ndiaye will succeed Marie Fontanel, former health adviser to Emmanuel Macron. She had held the position of Ambassador to the Council of Europe since September 2020. She should soon be appointed Ambassador of France to the Philippines.
“Golden cupboard” or “important gesture”?
This surprise appointment triggered a wave of irony on social networks, some Internet users denouncing “a parachuting into a golden cupboard”, others wondering about Pap Ndiaye’s sudden interest in European issues.
Announced this afternoon to the members of the Council of Europe, this appointment would have provoked a “rather enthusiastic” reaction, according to a senior Council official interviewed by France 3 Alsace: “the appointment of a minister shows the importance that the France grants to the Council of Europe”, we limit ourselves to commenting, in a usual balance of diplomacy and wooden language, specific to this European institution defending democracy and human rights, but remaining largely misunderstood (even confused), in the shadow of its big – and otherwise powerful – sister, the European Union.
A French embassy… in French territory
Pap Ndiaye will therefore become the new resident of the very beautiful Oppenheimer villa, endowed with vast gardens, in the very opulent district of the Orangerie in Strasbourg, where the permanent representation of France has been located since 1966. It is the the only case of a French embassy located…in French territory.
This article is originally published on france3-regions.francetvinfo.fr