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Obi hails Adesina’s exoneration, throws weight behind second term as AfDB President

Peter Obi
Mr Peter Obi and Mary Robinson, Former Ireland President, at a United Nations event in New York, December 2019. Mary Robinson chaired the high-level committee that cleared AfDB President, Dr. Akinwumi Adesina, of fraud charges.
Dr Akinwumi Adesina, President, African Development Bank (AfDB)

The exoneration of African Development Bank (AfDB) President, Dr. Akinwumi Adesina, by an Independent Review Panel set up to investigate allegations of ethical wrongdoings leveled against him, is a welcome development which paves the way for his second term as President of the Bank.

Vice Presidential Candidate of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) during the 2019 elections, Mr. Peter Obi, stated this on Tuesday while reacting to the news of Adesina’s vindication by the committee led by Mary Robinson, former President of the Republic of Ireland and a former United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights.

“I am, like every well-meaning Nigerian, very delighted at the high level of integrity on display in the clearance of AfDB President, Dr. Adesina, by the Mary Robinson-led committee,” Obi said while congratulating Dr. Adesina.

Hailing Mary Robinson, Chairperson of the Elders, a global body of wise persons concerned with the world’s wellbeing, as “integrity personified”, Obi said: “This clearance has finally given the ‘OK’ for Adesina’s second tenure to continue his good work for the African continent.”

The Independent Review Panel was set up by the AfDB Bureau of Governors following a complaint by the United States, to review the process by which two previous organs of the Bank – the Ethics Committee of the Board, and the Bureau of the Board of Governors – had previously exonerated Adesina.

The distinguished three-member Independent Review Panel also included the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Gambia, Mr. Hassan B. Jallow; and Mr. Leonard F. McCarthy, a former Director of Public Prosecutions, a former Director for the Office of Serious Economic Offences, and a former Head of the Directorate of Special Operations of South Africa.

The report of the Independent Review Panel states that it “concurs with the (Ethics) Committee in its findings in respect of all the allegations against the President and finds that they were properly considered and dismissed by the Committee.”

This clears the way for Governors of the Bank to re-elect Adesina to a second five-year term as President during annual meetings of the Bank scheduled for August 25-27, 2020.

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