Akinwumi Adesina has been re-elected as the president of the Africa Development Bank (AfDB) by the bank’s Board of Governors for a second five-year term. His re-election came after he stood unopposed in the development bank’s elections.
The continent’s multilateral lender, based in Abidjan, conducted her elections on August 27 at the bank’s headquarters where Adesina had emerged ahead of Cristina Duarte, the agricultural minister of Cape Verde and Chadian finance minister, Kordje Bedoumra, who were the contenders for the said position five years earlier.
On the back of the approaching election on Thursday, Nigeria, in a bid to support its own in the race for the leadership of the international financial institution, had discreetly increased her voting rights through the doubling of her capital share in the bank from 9 per cent to 16.8 per cent.
The move made Nigeria the biggest rights holder in the continental lender ahead of Egypt who has 4.8 per cent stake in the bank, Germany with 7.5 per cent, and the United States and Cote d’Ivoire who have 5.5 and 3.1 per cents shareholding rights respectively, after redeeming the subscriptions it had pledged as part of a general capital before the January deadline.
Ahead of the election there had been media reports about a probe of Adesina following a petition by some whistleblowers, a petition that was later dismissed by an internal probe set up under the bank’s processes. An independent review then followed after the United States disagreed with the internal probe carried out by the bank; and this also cleared Adesina of any wrong-doing.
But many view the first five years of Adesina as very successful, with specific mention of progress made in the continent as a result of the activities of the AfDB under Adesina’s watch, including a power programme that has seen over 18 million people now with access to electricity; 141 million people benefiting from improved agricultural technologies for food security, as well as the 15 million people who have access to finance in a drive to enhance financial inclusion in Africa.
In the same vein, over 101 million people now have access to improved transport and 60 million people have gained access to water and sanitation.
With his re-election, many now expect Adesina to renew with vigour his AfDB agenda encapsulated in the AfDB’s High 5s of development.