The Anambra State Governor, Willie Obiano, has urged the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), and other African leaders, not to allow US President Donald Trump to frustrate Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala’s bid to emerge as the next Director-General of the World Trade Organisation.
Obiano said this in a statement titled, ‘WTO DG: A Call on President Buhari and African leaders to step up diplomatic offensive’, signed by the state Commissioner for Information and Public Enlightenment, C-Don Adinuba, in Awka, on Thursday.
The statement read in part, “All that is needed is a great diplomatic offensive before the formal announcement of the winner on November 9.
“The people and government of Anambra State, therefore, call upon President Muhammadu Buhari and other African leaders to immediately set in motion the machinery to get the United States to do the right thing by supporting the most qualified and the most popular candidate.
“The Trump administration wants South Korean Trade Minister, Yoo Myung-hee, who has the support of only 55 nations, about 50 per cent of Okonjo-Iweala’s vote. It needs not to have its way.
“Earlier this year it opposed the re-election of Dr Akinwunmi Adesina, Nigeria’s former Minister of Agriculture and African Union’s choice, as the African Development Bank President based on unsubstantiated allegations like nepotism.
“It is difficult to understand why the Trump administration should be on a collision course with Africans on international assignments.
“In the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic in May, the administration announced it was severing relations with the World Health Organisation led by Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, an Ethiopian, accusing the organisation of being China’s lackey, the same charge it levels against the WTO.
“Acts like this help fuel criticism that the administration may not be free of racism.
“The people and government of Anambra State are of the opinion that President Buhari needs to do more to urgently mobilise not just African leaders, but also the EU and, indeed, the rest of the world to get the United States to do the right thing.”