Buhari nominates Okonjo-Iweala as Nigeria’s candidate for World Trade Organisation’s DG election

President Muhammadu Buhari has nominated Nigeria’s former minister for finance, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo- Iweala for the position of Director-General of the World Trade Organisation (WTO).

The nomination was announced in a five-page document addressed to all embassies and permanent missions in Addis Ababa released on Thurday the 4th of May.

According to the document, the Federal government of Nigeria withdrew the candidacy of Yonov Frederick Agah, Nigeria’s permanent representative to WTO in an election scheduled to hold in Switzerland next year to make way for Dr. Okonjo-Iweala. 

The nomination comes about three weeks after the incumbent, Mr. Roberto Azevêdo, announced that he would step down from the position of DG. on August 31, 2020, cutting his second term short by one year.

The decision, according to Azevêdo, is to give his successor the time to work with WTO members to shape the strategic direction for the Twelfth Ministerial Conference (MC12) and beyond.

Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Nigeria’s two-time Minister of Finance under two past presidents is an economist and international development expert with a career spanning 25 years at the World Bank.

Okonjo-Iweala currently sits on the Boards of Standard Chartered Bank, Twitter, Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization (GAVI), and the African Risk Capacity (ARC).


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