After being delayed two weeks, the african development Bank (AFDB) has announced, Thursday, June 4 evening, the launch of an independent investigation into the accusations of corruption against its president, the Nigerian Akinwumi Adesina, the only candidate in her re-election to a new term of office, but whose position appears increasingly fragile.
The pan-african institution of development, which is based in Abidjan, has finally yielded to the requirement of the United States, dissatisfied with the internal investigation, which had completely absolved the Nigerian serious accusations made by a group of " whistleblowers ", such as "unethical behaviour, personal enrichment and patronage'.
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That said, the board of governors of the AFDB ?
"The Office [of the Board of governors of the ADB] should be to allow an independent review "on the" allegations " from whistleblowers aimed Mr. Adesina, said this in a press release, the president of the office of the council, Nialé Kaba, minister of ivory coast planning and Development, at the conclusion of a new bureau meeting on Thursday.
This "independent review must be conducted by a neutral person, honest, high caliber, who have an indisputable experience and an international reputation proved to be, within a period of two to four weeks maximum, taking into account the electoral calendar" of the bank, which shall elect its chairman at the end of August, says the minister of côte d'ivoire.
Akinwumi Adesina, 60 years old elected in 2015 to the head of the ADB, one of the five major multilateral development banks in the world, since the beginning of the year a series of accusations that are embarrassing, disclosed in the press in April.
In a detailed report, whistleblowers accuse her of favouritism in many appointments of senior officials, in particular of fellow nigerians, to be appointed or promoted to persons suspected or convicted of fraud or corruption, or of their having given a comfortable severance benefits without sanction.
charges dismissed en bloc by the former Agriculture minister and first Nigerian to lead the ADB since its establishment in 1964, which declared on several occasions his "innocence" and which had quickly been cleared by the bank on the faith of a report from its own ethics committee, internal.
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Washington turned up the pressure
Second shareholder of the ADB after Nigeria, the United States have required, at the end of may, the launch of an independent inquiry, questioning, in a stinging letter to the Treasury secretary Steven Mnuchin, the work of the ethics committee and causing a serious crisis in the pan-african institution.
"Considering the extent, severity, and the accuracy of the allegations against the only candidate for the leadership of the Bank for the next five years, we believe that a more thorough investigation is necessary for the president of the ADB enjoys the support and confidence full of shareholders," wrote Mr Mnuchin. The decision to launch an independent investigation has been made " for the purpose of reconciling the different points of view ", and also states Nialé Kaba.
One of the issues was the re-election of Adesina
While his re-election seemed assured six months ago, with the support of the african Union and the economic Community of States of West Africa, and following a capital increase giant of 115 billion us dollars accepted in October 2019, the position Akinwumi Adesina appears now to be increasingly fragile. This man charismatic style gladly flamboyant does not let it foreclose, vilipendant his opponents, praising its balance sheet and looking for all possible support.
The nigerian president, Muhammadu Buhari has publicly expressed its support on Tuesday, after having received in Abuja. Economist specialised in development, Akinwumi Adesina minister of Agriculture of his country, before chairing the BAD. He has also received the support of a dozen former african heads of State who have signed a joint letter.
The former president of Nigeria Olusegun Obasanjo (1999-2007), which enjoys a certain moral authority in his country and on the continent, has provided support to his fellow countryman by calling, in a letter published at the end of may, a dozen former african heads of State to "rise" to "defend" the BAD. "The u.s. secretary of the Treasury denigrates the Bank and a violation of the whole of its system of governance, "and the attack" unprecedented, "could lead to the" end " of the institution, believes the ex-leader, calling his ex-counterparts to sign a joint press release.
On the other hand, the non-african shareholder of the ADB seem to be more circumspect about his action, according to observers. The BAD account 80 shareholder countries (54 african countries and 26 non-african, Europe, America and Asia). She is the only african institution rated triple-A by the rating agencies.
internally, the management of personnel conducted under his direction has caused a stir in the past five years, leading to the departure of many top executives. In an open letter dated may 30, "a group of members of the african staff of the ADB" has harshly criticized his administration, accusing it of ignoring " spoofing and smoke ", that is to say, to communicate more than they act, and of having "weakened" the Bank. The election of the new president is scheduled for late August.
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