WTO: France, Germany, 104 others declare support for Okonjo-Iweala

WTO: France, Germany, 104 others declare support for Okonjo-Iweala

- The coast is getting clearer for Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala to emerge as the first female director-general of the World Trade Organisation

- If she gets the top job, Okonjo-Iweala will also be the first African to occupy the coveted position

- Okonjo-Iweala is Nigeria's former finance and foreign affairs minister and a well-respected economist

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The European Union have backed Nigeria’s former finance minister, Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, in her bid to become the first African and first female director-general of the World Trade Organisation (WTO).

The endorsement of the 27 EU-member states brings the number of countries officially endorsing Okonjo-Iweala to 106 out of the 164 states that comprise the WTO.

The 55-member African Union had earlier officially supported the former World Bank director over her sole remaining opponent, Yoo Myung-hee of South Korea.

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WTO: France, Germany, 104 others declare support for Okonjo-Iweala
A well-respected economist, Dr Okonjo-Iweala sits on the board of GAVI and Twitter. Photo credit: @wef / Twitter
Source: Twitter

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Okonjo-Iweala had also won the goodwill of a group of Caribbean and Pacific States as well as others from Asia.

The European Parliament had endorsed Okonjo-Iweala to head the WTO, saying she is well-equipped.

A European Union official quoted in a foreign newspaper said the EU will publicly announce its support for the 66-year-old economist today.

Meanwhile, Aliko Dangote, one of Africa's richest business mogul, has declared his support for Okonjo-Iweala in the race.

Dangote believes that the WTO needs a professional with proven international records like Okonjo-Iweala at its helm of affairs.

The Nigerian tycoon endorsed the former minister for the envied position on his verified Twitter page on Tuesday, September 1.

Similarly, a former prime minister of the United Kingdom (UK), Gordon Brown, has lent his support to Okonjo-Iweala, arguing that she is just the right person for the job.

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Brown argued that the former Nigerian finance and foreign minister has produced positive results even in the toughest of jobs across the world and is, therefore, fit for the much-contested position.

Also, the minority leader of Nigeria's House of Representatives, Ndudi Elumelu, has lent his support for Okonjo-Iweala's candidacy.

In his submission during plenary in the green chambers recently, Elumele stated that Okonjo-Iweala is very qualified for the position.

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