By Victor Young
IndustriALL Global Union has called on African Union, AU, to rally round the President of African Development Bank, AfDB, Dr Akinwunmi Adesina, and ensure that America does not have its way in imposing its interest on the bank.
In a statement on Monday in Kaduna, Vice President of IndustriALL Global Union, African Region, Issa Aremu, said the global workers’ body was impressed by the achievements of the bank under the leadership of Dr Adesina.
According to the statement “Adesina is passionate about value addition to the abundant Africa’s agricultural raw materials in particular.
“Last year, for the first time in its 56 years of formation, Industrial Global Union entangled with the Bank on financing value addition in mining sector in South Africa.
“Certainly the multiple award-winning President of the Bank is an asset to the Bank and Africa.
“The overriding objective of the AfDB is to improve living conditions on the continent through various initiatives. Africa has the lowest water resources development level, with only 4% of its annual resources invested in water.
“Nearly 40% of the cultivated areas are irrigated and the energy potential is virtually untapped. The management and development of water resources are among the most crucial issues facing Africa.
“AfDB needs stability and continuity to make its vision a reality in these areas, especially in agriculture and rural development, which AfDB’s priorities.
“It is commendable that some African leaders such as President Muhammadu Buhari and former President Obasanjo rallied timely support for AfDB’s independence and integrity.
“However, there is the urgent need for a categorical position by Africa Union, AU, on the unfolding development within the African Development Bank, AfDB.
“It is now an open knowledge that United States of America cynically still insists on ‘a further probe’ despite the clean bill of health given to Mr Adesina by the board of directors of the bank over sundry allegations.
“The U.S. Treasury Secretary, Steven Mnuchin, audaciously did an open letter disagreeing with the conclusions of the ethics committee of the board of directors of AfDB.
“Any external attack on AfDB should be seen as an assault on AU. The open subversion of the internal governance structures of the Bank is clearly unacceptable.
“United States would certainly not allow an African country subscriber to the shares of North American Development Bank, NADB, a North American regional financial institution, not to talk of an African country questioning the outcomes of its internal rules and regulations.
“What is good for NADB, is even better for AfDB.”