With the race for the position of Director-General of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) intensifying, President Muhammadu Buhari has guaranteed contestant, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala Nigeria’s full support in ensuring she emerges as the next Director-General of the WTO.
The former Minister of Finance is one of two candidates contesting for the topmost job of the multilateral institution.
Buhari, who received the one-time Managing Director (Operations) of the World Bank at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, stated that she deserved more support to get the plum office on account of her profile and diligence in public service.
His words: “I assure you that we will do all that we can to ensure that you emerge as the Director-General of WTO, not only because you are a Nigerian, but because you are a hardworking Nigerian. You deserve this”.
President Buhari further went to state that he did the same for Dr. Akinwunmi Adesina when he contested for President of the African Development Bank. He added “both of you served the country under the People’s Democratic Party (PDP). You are both highly qualified. We will continue to support you. I will immediately make calls. ”
Responding, Okonjo-Iweala pleaded to President Buhari to “put a smile” on her face. The development economist expressed her gratitude to the President and his ministers for supporting her staunchly.
She also appreciated ECOWAS leaders for their validation. The ex-minister asked the President to “make one final push within the week to beat the Koreans and bring this to Nigeria by sending a few letters and placing telephone calls to some world leaders, and also thank others for their support.”
Her opposition in the third and final phase of consultation that would see to the election of a successor to Brazil’s Roberto Azevedo from October 19 to 27, 2020 is Yoo Myung-hee of South Korea.