Dr. Akinwumi Adesina has been re-elected as President of the Africa Development Bank by its Board of Governors.
He was re-elected during the bank’s 55th Annual Meetings, which is being held virtually due to COVID-19 restrictions.
A globally-renowned development economist and a World Food Prize Laureate and Sunhak Peace Prize Laureate, Dr. Adesina has distinguished himself in driving a bold agenda to reform the bank and accelerate Africa’s development.
He was first elected as President of the AfDB on May 28, 2015.
As a newly re-elected President, Adesina will begin his new term on September 1, 2020.
The election result, which gave him a hundred percent of votes of all regional and non-regional members of the Bank, was announced by the Chairperson of the Board of Governors of the Bank, Mrs. Niale Kaba, Minister of National Planning of Côte d’Ivoire.
“I am delighted that the Board of Governors have re-elected Dr. Adesina for a second term in office as President,” Minister Niale Kaba, said.
“As shareholders, we strongly support the Bank and will give him all the necessary support to carry forward and implement his compelling vision for the Bank over the next five years.”
Adesina’s first term focused on the bold new agenda for the Bank Group based on five development priorities known as the High 5s: Light up and Power Africa; Feed Africa; Industrialize Africa; Integrate Africa; and Improve the Quality of Life for the People of Africa.
Under Adesina’s leadership, the African Development Bank’s Board of Directors approved a $10 billion facility to support African countries to address the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Bank also launched a $3 billion COVID-19 social bond on the global capital markets, the highest US dollar-denominated social bond ever in world history, which is listed on the London Stock Exchange, Luxembourg Stock Exchange and NASDAQ.
“I am deeply grateful for the collective trust, strong confidence, and support of our shareholders for electing me for a second term as President,” Adesina said. “It is yet another call for selfless service to Africa and the African Development Bank, to which I will passionately devote myself.”
The African Development Bank is Africa’s premier development finance institution, comprising 54 regional and 27 non-regional member countries.
“The future beckons us for a more developed Africa and a much stronger and resilient African Development Bank Group,” Adesina said. “We will build on the strong foundations of success in the past five years, while further strengthening the institution, for greater effectiveness and impacts.”
Adesina’s re-election was mired in controversy after he was charged with alleged ethical violations.
However, after repeated investigations, the former Nigerian Agriculture Minister was cleared of all charges levelled against him, paving the way for his re-election.
Adesina is the first Nigerian to hold the post of the bank’s President.
The AfDB, founded in 1964, is geared towards spurring “sustainable economic development and social progress” among member African countries.
Nigeria is the AfDB’s largest shareholder with 16.8 percent of rights, while Germany and the United States own 7.4 percent and 5.5 percent respectively.