Nigeria Doubles AfDB Voting Rights Ahead Of Key Vote

Nigeria has almost doubled its voting rights in the African Development Bank (AfDB) to 16.8% ahead of the lender’s annual meetings next week.

The bank’s president, Akinwumi Adesina, a Nigerian, is seeking re-election at the helm of the lender after being cleared of allegations of wrongdoing.

According to Bloomberg, Nigeria became the biggest rights holder by far, followed by so called non-regional members Germany with 7.4% and the U.S. with 5.5%, according to a memorandum sent to governors on Augist 20.

Nigeria reportedly boosted its voting power by paying subscriptions it had pledged as part of a general capital before the January deadline.

The move may allow Africa’s most populous nation to help keep Adesina in the presidency for another five-year term when the vote takes place on August 27. He is the sole candidate this election year, unlike in 2015 when he slugged it out with Chadian Finance Minister Kordje Bedoumra and Cape Verde’s Agriculture Minister Cristina Duarte.

AfDB President, Akinwunmi Adesina

The annual meetings will take place virtually between August 25 and 27 after they were postponed in May as a result of the spread of the novel coronavirus disease, COVID-19.

“The format of the meetings has been adapted to consider the physical constraints imposed by the COVID-19 pandemic,” the bank said.

In July, an independent panel backed an AfDB probe that found no evidence of wrongdoing by Adesina in his bid to seek re-election. Unidentified whistleblowers had accused him of handing contracts to acquaintances and appointing relatives to strategic positions at the Abidjan-based lender.

The AfDB is Africa’s biggest multilateral bank. Its shareholders include 54 nations on the African continent and 27 countries in the Americas, Europe, Middle East and Asia.

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