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Nigeria: World Bodies pledges support for Okonjo-Iweala as WTO DG

By Oluwaseun Sonde

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The World Health Organization (WHO), European Commission (EU), World Bank and World Economic Forum (WEF) have pledged support for Nigerian Former Finance Minister, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala who was appointed as the Director General of the World Trade Organization (WTO).

The Director General of WHO, Tedro Ghebreyesus who pledged the support on his official social platform on Monday, said her great experience, skills and advocacy to tackle today’s challenges including Vaccine Equity make her standout.

According to him, “Glad to see my sister Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala appointed WTO Director General. Your great experience, skills and advocacy to tackle today’s challenges, including Vaccine Equity, make you WTO’s perfect chief. I look forward to working with you to help the world recover from COVID-19”, he said.

The President of European Commission (EU), Ursula von der Leyen congratulated Okonjo-Iweala on her new appointment, adding that  she is glad to see a woman from Africa at the head of the WTO.

“This is an historic moment for the entire world. While assuring Okonjo-Iweala that European is fully behind her. “We will support the reform of the WTO and will help you protect the rules-based multilateral trading system”, she said.

Also, the President of World Bank Group, David Malpass congratulated Okonjo-Iwealato on her selection as WTO Director General which he described as an excellent choice. “As Managing Director of the World Bank Group, Okonjo-Iweala was at the center of our global operations and I look forward to a strong new working relationship”, he said.

Furthermore, the President of the World Economic Forum (WEF), Borge Brende said Okonjo-Iweala’s leadership couldn’t have come at a more critical time while congratulating the WTO Chief. “There will be no recovery without resuming back to a situation where we also see growth in trade. We have to do everything that is possible to get trade negotiations back on track”, he said.

Meanwhile, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala was appointed the Director General of World Trade Organization (WTO), which make her the first African women to attained this seat, while she was appointed after the United States of America declared their support for her.

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