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Integrity Vindicates Akinwumi Adesina

Akinwumi Adesina, cleared of wrongdoing

Nigeria has a course to smile as Akinwumi Adesina, has been cleared of wrongdoing by the African Development Bank’s international panel sent to investigate the internal wrangling at the top echelon of the Banking leadership with special emphasis on the leadership of Akinwumi Adesina, The president of the African Development Bank (AfDB) was cleared of corruption charges after a review by an international stakeholder’s independent panel. The United States, one of the bank’s biggest shareholders, insisted on a new inquiry in April after an internal review cleared Akinwumi Adesina.

Vindicated from wrong doing

Vindication of Akinwumi Adesina sends a clear message to the world that despite the ranking of most African countries in corruption index, Africa and indeed Nigeria can still boast of many incorruptible leaders like Akinwumi Adesina.

The panel of justics

The panel of three experts was made up of Ireland’s ex-President Mary Robinson, Gambian Chief Justice Hassan Jallow, and Leonard McCarthy, formerly the World Bank’s integrity vice-president. They backed the findings of the bank’s ethnic’s committee, which cleared Mr Adesina of all charges alleged by the whistleblowers in January.

“The panel concurs with the 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,” their report concluded. The report is a rebuff to anyone, who may oppose or reject the committee’s original review led to their inquiry, the Bloomberg news agency reports.

The panel of three experts, led by Robinson alongside Gambia’s Chief Justice Hassan Jallow and the World Bank’s former integrity vice president Leonard McCarthy, cleared Adesina of all charges alleged by whistleblowers.

ADB stakeholders and Whistleblowers

Besides the core 54 African countries, the US is one of the 27 non-regional members of the AfDB and its second-largest shareholder. The bank finances projects in agriculture, health, energy, education, transport and other development sectors in Africa.

Whistleblowers had accused the Nigerian of giving contracts to friends and appointing relatives at the bank. Mr Adesina is set to be re-elected for another five-year term in August.The 60-year-old banker, a former minister of agriculture in Nigeria, will be the sole candidate in the election.

Akinwumi Adesina the Banker,

A charismatic speaker, who is known for his elegant suits and bow ties, he has led the bank since 2015. He had denied accusations against him, saying they were “attempts by some to tarnish” his reputation.

Akinwumi Adesina, 60, a charismatic speaker known for his elegant suits and bow ties, became the first Nigerian to helm the AfDB in 2015 — but a 15-page report earlier this year claimed that under his watch the bank had been tarred by poor governance, impunity, personal enrichment and favoritism.

The African banking institution and Adesina — who is the sole candidate for the bank’s August’s presidential elections — has been battered by the rollercoaster of allegations after the whistleblowers’ complaints were leaked to the media in April.

The former Nigerian finance minister who led the Finance Ministry of Africa’s biggest economy, had always declared himself “innocent” of the charges.

Robinson — who led Ireland from 1990 to 1997 before serving as the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights until 2002 — dismissed the 16 whistleblower allegations against Adesina. The panel did not investigate the charges themselves, as that was not within their mandate.

The AfDB plays an important if the largely behind-the-scenes role in African economies, financing projects in agriculture, health, energy, education, transport and other development sectors. Nigeria, Africa’s most populous nation and largest economy, has firmly backed Adesina in the face of the allegations.

Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari said the panel’s report “validates his competence and integrity to lead” the bank. “This conclusion of the review of the Report of the Ethics Committee should finally draws a curtain on the allegations that have created distractions for the institution in recent months,” President Buhari said in a statement on Twitter.

“I urge Dr. Adesina to remain steadfast, dedicated and resolute in pursuing his noble goals for the Bank, especially with the now-expected second term in office.”

This post fist appeared in AFP, BBC, Yahoo, and Reuters in July 28, 2020, 11:07 PM

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