The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) has endorsed the candidacy of African Development Bank President Akinwumi Adesina for a second term at the helm of the institution.
The decision was announced at the end of the fifty-sixth ordinary session of the Authority of Heads of State and Government of ECOWAS, held on Saturday in Abuja, Nigeria.
“In recognition of the sterling performance of Dr. Akinwumi Adesina during his first term of office as President of the African Development Bank, the Authority endorses his candidacy for a second term as the President of the bank,” ECOWAS said in a communique issued after the meeting.
Adesina is the eighth elected President of the African Development Bank Group. He was elected to the five-year term on 28 May 2015 by the Bank’s Board of Governors at its Annual Meetings in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire, where the same electoral process will play out next year.
Adesina is a renowned development economist and the first Nigerian to serve as President of the Bank Group. He has served in several high-profile positions internationally, including with the Rockefeller Foundation, and was Nigeria’s Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development from 2011 to 2015, a career stint that was widely praised for his reforms in the agricultural sector.
The former minister brought the same drive to the Bank, making agriculture one of the organization’s priority areas.
Speaking earlier at the opening ceremony, Adesina reminded the group of the African Development Bank’s investments in the region.
“You can always count on the African Development Bank – your Bank,” Adesina told delegates.