• World - Economy
  • Updated: June 05, 2020

President Buhari Nominates Okonjo-Iweala For Director-General Of WTO

President Buhari Nominates Okonjo-Iweala For Director-Genera

Former Minister of Finance, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, has been nominated by President Muhammadu Buhari, to head the World Trade Organisation (WTO). Okonjo-Iweala was nominated as Nigeria's candidate for the position of Director-General for WTO.

Okonjo-Iweala was nominated after President Buhari dropped the nomination of Nigeria’s permanent representative to WTO, Yonov Agah. He was also WTO’s Deputy Director-General. Okonjo-Iweala was initially tipped to become the President of the World Bank before David Malpass got the position.

Nigeria requested for the support of African Union members to ensure Okonjo-Iweala become the Director-General of WTO. Recall that the position of the Director-General of WTO became vacant after Roberto Azevedo stepped down a year to the end of his second term.

According to a letter reported by The Cable, it was stated that “The embassy of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and permanent mission to the African Union and United Nations Economic Commission for Africa present compliments to all embassies and permanent missions in Addis Ababa and has the honour to inform that the Federal Government of Nigeria has withdrawn the candidacy of Ambassador Yonov Frederick Agah for election to the position of director-general of the World Trade Organisation.

“Nigeria is therefore pleased to request the support of esteemed AU member states as well as permanent missions and embassies in Addis Ababa in favour of the candidacy of Okonjo-Iweala.” The letter read in parts.

Before this nomination, Okonjo-Iweala was the former managing director (operations) at the World Bank. She is currently a board member of Social media platform, Twitter. 

She also heads the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization. It is a public-private global health partnership that has a goal of increasing access to immunisation in poor countries.

The position of the Director-General is a four-year; from 2021 to 2025. The election will take place in Geneva, Switzerland in 2021.

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