Ex-U.S. director at AfDB backs Adesina

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A FORMER United States Director to the African Development Bank (AfDB), Mima Nedelcovych, has said the United States has no reason not to back Dr. the bank’s president, Akinwumi Adesina, for second term in office.

In an interview with the Pan African Visions, an online medium, Nedelcovych said: “I am fully convinced with the responses provided by Adesina to the accusations of the whistleblowers. Unless the U.S. government is holding some secret that the American public is not aware of, I see absolutely no reason why it should not wholeheartedly support the re-election of President Akinwumi Adesina for a second term at the helm of the African Development Bank.”

According to him, if competing with the Chinese in Africa is primordial to the U.S., then supporting the position of the African fellow shareholders in the AfDB and supporting President Adesina is in the U.S. interests.

He listed some of the achievements of Adesina, including the establishment of the framework for furthering the critically important role that the AfDB is playing in the development and inclusive growth of the continent.

On the whistleblower allegations that triggered the current tensions between AfDB partners, Nedelcovych said the internal inquiry did its job fully in line with statutory guidelines.

“For me, those accusations that were made public and investigated by the Ethics Committee, have been responded to in great detail by President Adesina to my full satisfaction. Adesina and the AfDB have stepped up when most needed for an African institution to lead the way in the responses to the COVID-19 pandemic,” he said.

Nedelcovych, who served from 1989 to 1993, said the U.S. is the largest non-regional shareholder of the AfDB, and one of the major contributors to the African Development Fund, the concessional window. The AfDB has always had strong support from the US and that continues to be the case.

He said Adesina, in his vision and execution of the “High 5s” for Africa, has contributed an awful lot to the development of the African continent.

“Frictions are always to be found in international organizations; it is the nature of the beast as every shareholder has the right to their own opinion. Having said that, I must admit that this “disagreement” is the starkest of any I have seen in the past between the US and the AfDB,” he added.

“For me, those accusations that were made public and investigated by the Ethics Committee, have been responded to in great detail by President Adesina to my full satisfaction,” he added.

He said Adesina has established the framework for furthering the critically important role that the AfDB is playing in the development and inclusive growth of the continent, adding that the bank chief came in with a very big vision and mission embodied in the High 5s that he very much supported from day one.

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