What Buhari told Adesina about his re-elections bid at AfDB

Embattled President of the African Development Bank (AfDB),Dr. Akinwumi Adesina on Tuesday was reassured of Nigeria’s support for his second term bid at the bank.

President Muhammadu Buhari at closed door meeting with Dr. Adesina in Abuja on Tuesday pledged that Nigeria would work with all other leaders and stakeholders in AfDB to ensure that Adesina was elected for a second term to build on his achievements during his first term.

He said: “I will remain consistent with you, because no one has faulted the step I took on behalf of Nigeria.’’

“I didn’t say because you were a Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) minister, and I belonged to the All Progressives Congress (APC), so I would withhold my support.

The African Union had already endorsed the incumbent AfDB president as sole candidate for the continent, but some other stakeholders are trying to ensure that he is re-investigated for alleged breach of the Bank’s code of ethics.

In his remarks, Adesina, a former Minister of Agriculture, said the 16 allegations raised against him were trumped up, “and without facts, evidence, and documents, as required by the rules and regulations of the bank.”

He added that the Bank’s Ethics Committee cleared him of all the allegations, and calls for fresh investigation by the United States were against the rules.

He said: “My defense ran into 250 pages, and not a single line was faulted or questioned. The law says that report of the Ethics Committee should be transmitted to the Chairman of Governors of the bank. It was done, and the governors upheld the recommendations.

“That was the end of the matter, according to the rules. It was only if I was culpable that a fresh investigation could be launched. I was exonerated, and any other investigation would amount to bending the rules of the bank, to arrive at a predetermined conclusion.”

He stressed that the motive was to soil his name, and that of the bank, saying he was proud to be a Nigerian, and thanked President Buhari for his unflinching support.

“You helped me to get elected in the first place, and you have supported me robustly all along, and the African Union unanimously endorsed my re-election,” he declared.