Buhari meets with Okonjo-Iweala

Mon, Mar 15, 2021
By editor


NIGERIAN President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday, March 15, held a meeting with Ngozi Oknojo-Iweala, new director general of the World Trade Organisation, in the State House Abuja.

Okonjo-Iweala, who is a Nigerian-American and also a former finance minister and cordinating minister of the economy in Nigeria, is visiting Nigeria for the first time since she assumed office at the WTO headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland on March 1. She ran for the post on the platform of Nigeria supported by the African Union.

The director general, who arrived at the Presidential Villa at about 2:45 pm accompanied by some officials of the the WTO was welcomed by Prof. Ibrahim Gambari, chief of staff to the president along with Geoffrey Onyeama, minister of foreign affairs, Niyi Adebayo, minister of trade and investment, and Ambassador Maryam Katagumas, minister of State for Trade and Investment.

At the end of the meeting President Muhammadu Buhari described the appointment of  Okonjo-Iweala as director-general of the World Trade Organisation, WTO, as well earned despite the support from home.

“You also earned it. We are happy you made it, but you earned it with your record of performance both at home and abroad,”  Buhari said in a statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina On Monday, March 15.

He said: “Dr Okonjo-Iweala was putting Nigeria more on the world map and I congratulate you, as well as the country. I know you will represent us so well.”

Buhari lauded Nigerian women once again, pointing to key positions they hold like minister of finance, budget and national planning, head of the civil service of the federation, and many others, adding that the same way, the government would encourage the youths, “so that they can be ready for the challenges of the future.”

Okonjo-Iweala thanked President Buhari for the support she received from Nigeria in the race for the position, adding: “You nominated me, you wrote hundreds of letters, called up hundreds of world leaders.

“Without your personal and direct intervention, it may not have worked. The people of Nigeria also supported me massively. The youths were wonderful, always encouraging, backing me up on social media.

“Mr President, the world recognizes what you have done. Since its establishment, only men have led the WTO. Now, a woman has emerged for the first time, and she’s a Nigerian. We are so honoured,” said Okonjo-Iweala.

– Mar. 15, 2021 @ 5:45 GMT |