Nigeria’s former president, Goodluck Jonathan recently described his appointees during his time in power, as a world class team.
Jonathan made the assertion when he wrote a letter of commendation to the former minister of Agriculture in his cabinet, Akinwunmi Adeshina and the former director general of the Securities and Exchange Commission, Ms. Arunma Oteh.
Adeshina had just won the race to become the president of the African Development Bank while Oteh had been appointed the Vice President of the World Bank.
Naij.com profiles 5 officials who worked with Jonathan that have now gotten international appointments after leaving government.
Here they are:
1. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala: Okonjo-Iweala first stint in Nigeria’s government was under former president Olusegun Obasanjo who appointed her as finance minister in July 2003. Before then, she was the vice-president and corporate secretary of the World Bank. She was later moved to the ministry of foreign affairs but eventually resigned from the position after Obasanjo sacked her as the head of country’s economic team. She was however reappointed as minister of finance by Jonathan with an expanded portfolio that made her the coordinating minister for the economy. Yesterday, September 21, Lazard Limited, a prominent financial advisory and asset management firms that operates from 43 cities across 27 countries in Europe, Asia, Australia, North, Central and South America, appointed Okonjo-Iweala as a senior advisor with focus on sovereign advisory. She was also appointed the chair-elect of the board of Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, founded by Bill and Melinda Gates.
2. Akinwunmi Adeshina: Ogun state-born Adeshina served as Nigeria’s minister of agriculture before emerging as the president of the African Development Bank in May this year, making him the 8th president of the AFDB and the first Nigerian to occupy the position. Adeshina was no doubt one of the shinning lights of the Jonathan administration as his policies had a major impact of Nigeria’s agricultural sector. Before his appointment by Jonathan, Adeshina had excelled in the international stage as he was the vice president of policy and partnerships for the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA).
3. Arunma Oteh: Oteh was appointed by late president Umaru Musa Yar’adua as the Director-General of the Securities & Exchange Commission in 2009. But she stayed under the Jonathan government and was stoutly defended by the Jonathan administration when she had issues with Nigeria lawmakers who went on to withhold SEC’s funds just to spite her. But she was rescued by the then presidency as funds were approved for SEC directly from the presidency. She actively contributed to Nigeria’s economic development and helped to transform the Nigerian capital markets by exposing the mismanagement that was inherent in the markets. In July this year, she was appointed vice president and treasurer of the World Bank.
4. Amina Mohammed: Another appointee Jonathan inherited from the Yar’adua’s government, she worked as senior adviser to the president on Millennium Development Goals, before she took up her present appointment where she is the United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s special adviser on post-2015 development planning. Very experienced, she has been working in the field of development for more than 30 years both in the public sector and the private sector. She has also served on many international advisory boards and panels such as the Gates Foundation and the UN Secretary General’s Global Sustainability Panel.
5. Muhammad Ali Pate: Pate raised eyebrows in the polity when he resigned as Nigeria’s minister of state for health in July 2013 and resumed as a Professor in Duke University’s Global Health Institute, USA. His action then was surprising as it is not in the character of Nigerian politicians or political appointees to abandon their posts for international assignments. A medical doctor, Pate is an American Board-Certified MD in both internal medicine and infectious diseases, with an MBA (Health Sector Concentration) from Duke University USA. He also serves on the agenda committee of the World Economic Forum and he is a member of the strategic advisory group of experts.