The former President of Nigeria, Olusegun Obasanjo, has revealed why African leaders must support Akinwumi Adesina, the African Development Bank President.
This newspaper reports that the U.S. government has demanded a fresh probe of Adesina for allegations of impropriety and fraud.
In a letter written to 12 former African Presidents including President Thabo Mbeki of South Africa and John Kufour of Ghana, Obasanjo said Africa must stand up and not allow its institutions to be unduly controlled by non-African countries.
Obasanjo said: “As Africa faces COVID-19, Dr Adesina again took bold measures to ensure the bank can respond proactively to support African countries and got its board of directors to approve a $10bn crisis response facility to support African countries. In addition, the bank successfully launched a $53bn ‘Fight COVID-19’ social impact bond on the international capital market, secured at 0.75 percent interest rate”.
The former President added that Adesina took the bank to great feat in the last five years, adding that after Adesina was exonerated, the US government insisted that there must be a fresh investigation by an independent body, a demand which is inconsistent with the rules of the bank.
“Instead of accepting the exoneration of the President of the bank, they called for an independent investigation.
“This is outside of the rules, laws, procedures and governance systems of the bank. The US Treasury Secretary disparaged the bank and ridiculed the entire governance system of the bank which has been in place since 1964.
“If we do not rise up and defend the African Development Bank, this might mean the end of the African Development Bank, as its governance will be hijacked away from Africa.”