The Senior Special Assistant to the President (SSAP) on Sustainable Development Goals (SDG), Princess Adejoke Orelope-Adefulire has expressed optimism that the emergence of Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala as the Director-General of World Trade Organisation (WTO) will help improve Africa’s trade position with the rest of the world.
Orelope-Adefulire was equally hopeful the resultant improvement in Africa’s global trade position would help to create wealth and reduce poverty in the continent.
Her position is contained in a message she endorsed in person, to congratulate Okonjo-Iweala on her emergence as the head of the global trade organization.
She noted that, as an expert on the use of trade, economics and governance as tools of development, the Okonjo Iweala is now in a position to help in the actualization of the 2030 Agenda of ‘Leaving No One Behind,’ leveraging on her new office.
Orelope- Adefulire also noted that with her emergence as the first female leader in the WTO’s 25-year history, Okonjo-Iweala has again broken new ground while further solidifying her position as a trailblazer and inspiration for the girl child and women in many aspects of life.
She recalled that when Dr. Okonjo-Iweala served as Nigeria’s Finance minister, from 2003-2006 and briefly later, as foreign affairs minister, she was also the first woman to occupy both positions.
The presidential aide noted that as Nigeria’s finance minister and managing director (operations) of World Bank, Dr Okonjo-Iweala pioneered many reforms that succeeded in helping to turn the economy of the country and that of many other nations in Africa, South Asia, Europe, and Central Asia around respectively.
“Her passion for humanity in the past few years is reflected in her work as the Chair of the Board of GAVI, the Vaccine Alliance which has championed the provision of access to vaccines to millions of children across the globe, her work as the African Union Special Envoy on mobilization of international financial support in the fight against COVID-19, as well as an Envoy for the World Health Organisation’s access to COVID-19 Tools Accelerator.
“It is my belief that with her over three decade of experience as a world renowned expert in finance, economics and global development as well as her wide international contacts, Dr Okonjo-Iweala will make a success of her new position to the benefit of humanity,” Orelope-Adefulire said.