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Federal Government Berates US Government Over Adesina’s Fresh Probe

Muhammadu Buhari ,AfDB President,Dr Akinwunmi Adesina

The latest development on the alleged maladministration By Akinwumi Adesina has sprung forth fresh hopes for him as some notable political public figures in Nigeria had given their support to the embattled president of the African Development Bank.

Naija News learnt that one of the notable political public figures in Nigeria who had spoken on the matter was the former President of Nigeria, Olusegun Obasanjo.  According to the Elder statesman who also kicked against the development, the allegations were part of an attempt by some non-regional member countries of the bank to frustrate Adesina’s reelection for a second term.

However, The federal government has lent its voice on the allegation, speaking via the Minister of Finance, National Budgeting, and planning, Mrs. Zainab Ahmed, The Federal Government opposed the decision of the board of the African Development Bank to conduct an independent investigation into allegations against the bank’s President, Dr. Akinwumi Adesina.

The Federal Government said the move was not in line with laid-down procedures and insisted that due process must be followed to “protect and preserve the bank.”

The AfDB ethics committee had cleared Adesina of the allegations of corruption and favouritism levelled against him by some whistleblowers.

Specifically, he was accused of giving contracts to acquaintances, appointing relatives and friends to strategic positions, and giving preferential treatment to Nigeria and Nigerians.

The Minister of Finance, Zainab Ahmed, stated the Federal Government’s position on the matter in a letter she personally signed and addressed to Mrs Kaba Niale, chairman of the board of governors.

Ahmed said, “The call for an independent investigation of the President is outside of the laid-down rules, procedures and governing system of the bank and its Articles as it relates to the Code of Conduct on Ethics for the President.“As Board of Governors, we must uphold the rule of law and respect the governance system of the bank. “If there are any governance issues that need improvement, these can be considered and amendments proposed for adoption in line with the laid-down rules,” the minister said in the letter.”

Noting that the Nigerian government had followed the matter “very closely”, Ahmed stressed that the ethics committee had dismissed the allegations by the whistleblowers.

She revealed that the Federal Government welcomed the conclusion reached by the ethics committee, which, according to her, called on all oversight organs of the bank to answer relevant questions and provide information relating to the allegations.

“The ethics committee also called on the whistleblowers to submit any additional evidence, facts and documents to buttress their allegations but they did not,” she observed.

Ahmed further stated that the ethics committee followed the rules, laws, procedures and guidelines in conducting and completing its work, adding that the chair of the board also followed due process when she concurred with the committee’s report, which dismissed the allegations.

Pointing out that Adesina’s reelection, initially scheduled for May 28, has now been postponed to 25-27 August,Ahmed noted that the African Union had endorsed Adesina for reelection, following his endorsement by the ECOWAS Heads of State and Governments. She commended the chair of the AfDB board for endorsing the ethics committee’s report.

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