Mrs. Zainab Ahmed, the executive secretary of NEITI, has described the election of Dr. Akinwunmi Adesina as president of the African Development Bank as a 'timely opportunity for a new chapter to commence in the affairs of the regional organisation.’
Dr. Adesina was named president of the development bank after beating seven others from around the continent in a long campaign supported by President Muhammadu Buhari.
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Nigeria is the most populous country in Africa with the continent's largest economy, but has never run the development bank until now.
Mrs Ahmed admonished Dr. Adesina to take advantage of this unique opportunity by ensuring that vital steps are taken ‘to liberalise the development programmes of AfDB to attract lager participation of member countries in terms of access to information, policies and plans of the organisation.
"At the center of these problems which the AfDB needs to pay greater attention to is increasing rate of poverty, resource wars and conflicts."
Adding her voice to the growing expectation of Dr. Adesina, who also served in Goodluck Jonathan's administration as minister of agriculture and rural development was much applauded. Mrs. Ahmed called on the new AfDB President to channel the focus of the organisation on natural resource governance issues, using the NEITI global framework.
“Poor management of oil, gas and mining revenues is responsible for mass poverty in resource rich AfDB member countries in Africa”.
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NEITI was conceived during the administration of former president Olusegun Obasanjo to promote due process and transparency in extractive revenues paid to and received by government as well as ensure transparency and accountability in the application of extractive revenues.
Under the leadership of Mrs. Oby Ezekwesili, the organisation led the first ever national implementation of the global standards and principles of transparency in the oil, gas and mining sector.