By IGHO OYOYO
The presidency through the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), Princess Adejoke Orelope-Adfulire has expressed hope that the emergence of Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala as the Director General of World Trade Organisation (WTO) will help improve Africa’s trade position with the rest of the world, thereby helping to create wealth and reduce poverty in the continent.
The presidential aide who said this in a message she personally signed to congratulate Okonjo-Iweala over her emergence as the head of the global trade organization noted that as an expert on the use of trade, economics and governance as tools of development, the new WTO DG is now in position to help in the actualization of the 2030 Agenda of ‘Leaving No One Behind,’ leveraging on her new office.
Orelope- Adefulire also noted that with her emergence as the first female leader in the WTO’s 25-year history, Okonjo-Iweala has again broken new ground while further solidifying her position as a trailblazer and inspiration for the girl child and women in many aspects of life.
According to her, when Dr. Okonjo-Iweala served as Nigeria’s Finance minister, from 2003-2006 and briefly later, as foreign affairs minister, she was also the first woman to occupy both positions.
She noted that as Nigeria’s finance minister and managing director (operations) of World Bank, Dr Okonjo-Iweala pioneered many reforms which succeeded in helping to turn the economy of the country and that of many other nations in Africa, South Asia, Europe, and Central Asia around respectively.
“Her passion for humanity in the past few years is reflected in her work as the Chair of the Board of GAVI, the Vaccine Alliance which has championed provision of access to vaccines to millions of children across the globe, her work as the African Union Special Envoy on mobilization of international financial support in the fight against COVID-19, as well as an Envoy for the World Health Organisation’s access to COVID-19 Tools Accelerator.
“It is my belief that with her over three decade of experience as a world renowned expert in finance, economics and global development as well as her wide international contacts, Dr Okonjo-Iweala will make a success of her new position to the benefit of humanity,” Orelope-Adefulire concluded.