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How Ethics Committee Cleared AfDB President Adesina – Full Report

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AfDB: U.S. govt demands fresh probe into allegations against Adesina

Inside AfDB ‘whistleblower’ allegations against Akinwumi Adesina

The Ethics Committee of the Board of Directors of the African Development Bank (AfDB) acted in line with established rules in clearing the president of the bank, Akinwunmi Adesina, of allegations of impropriety and fraud, PREMIUM TIMES findings have shown.

The allegations were raised in January in a petition by a group of concerned staff of the bank.

The committee, headed by Takuji Yano, the institution’s Japan Executive Director, investigated the allegations and in its report on May 5 cleared Mr Adesina of all the 16 counts.

The committee dismissed the allegations as “spurious and unfounded.”

Regardless, on May 22, the United States government expressed “deep reservations about the integrity of the committee’s process” and called for a fresh “in-depth investigation of the allegations.”

In a letter to the Chairperson, Board of Governors of the AfDB Group, Nialé Kaba, the Secretary, U.S. Department of Treasury, Steven Mnuchin, faulted the Committee’s decision to exonerate Mr Adesina of all allegations.

Mr Mnuchin said Mr Adesina should not be declared innocent until an “independent outside investigator of high professional standing” has undertaken an evaluation of the facts of the allegations.

Due process

But, a review of the provisions of Article 3 of Resolution No. B/BG/2008/11 of the Bank and the Bank’s “Whistleblowing and Complaints Handling Policy” obtained exclusively by PREMIUM TIMES on Monday showed the committee followed due process before handing in its verdict.

The Board of Governors of the Bank in its resolution No. B/BG/2008/11 adopted at the 43rd Annual Meeting held on May 14, 2008 made the Code of Conduct for its Executive Directors and those of the African Development Fund (ADF) also applicable to the President of the Bank Group.

Article 3 of the resolution empowered the Ethics Committee to “conduct a preliminary examination of a complaint or allegation received by it to determine whether it is based on apparently solid justifications, with a view to submitting it to the Chairperson of the Bureau of the Board of Governors.”

The resolution also gave the conditions under which the Committee should make a submission to the Board of Governors after its preliminary examination.

If the preliminary examination of the complaint or allegation reveals it was “frivolous or not based on any objective and solid facts”, the resolution empowered the Committee to dismiss it.

On the other hand, it said if the preliminary examination of the complaint or allegations revealed facts capable of establishing violations of the Code of Conduct, the Committee was empowered to submit the complaints or allegations to the Chairperson of the Bureau of the Board of Governors for further examination.

Due process timelines

The committee received an email from the “Group of Concerned Staff Members” on January 19, titled “Disclosure of Acts Related to Alleged Breach of the Code of Ethics by an Elected Officer.”

A copy of the mail was sent to the Director of the Integrity & Anti-Corruption office (PIAC) of the Bank, the Chairperson of the Audit and Finance Committee (AUFI).

The committee immediately drew the attention of the Board of Directors of the Bank to the petition.

But, to determine which, between the Audit and Finance Committee (AUFI) of the Board and the Director of the Integrity and Anti-corruption Office (PIAC), had the legal mandate to handle the complaint, a restricted meeting of the Board was held.

On February 4, the Committee approached the General Counsel of the Bank to seek not only further clarification on its mandate but to solicit the legal advice on the admissibility of the petition form as filed.

The meeting was in addition to the oral evidence received by the Committee from the Director of the Anti-corruption & Integrity Office, and the Bank’s Auditor-General.

The following day, the Committee at an informal meeting conducted a point-by-point examination of all the allegations to confirm their substantive validity.

At the end of the meeting, the committee resolved to write to the petitioners for additional information on their allegations.

On February 7, the Committee formally sent a copy of the petition to Mr Adesina and demanded his official response.

On February 14, the Committee sent an email to the petitioners to request additional information to sustain their allegations.

However, in their response the following day, the petitioners declined the committee’s request, opting to maintain their anonymity. They argued that providing any further evidence would uncover their identities.

On February 10, Mr Adesina’s legal counsel sent a letter to the Committee on the matter. A similar letter was also sent on March 10.

However, the Committee decided to ignore the letters on the ground that Mr Adesina did not inform it the letters were from his legal representative.

Consequently, between February 27 and April 9, the committee held about five meetings to examine the 16 allegations contained in the petition.

On April 8, the committee received a memorandum from Mr Adesina conveying his response to the petition, which was transmitted to the Board of Governors, accompanied with other documents on the matter.

Committee report

On completion of the preliminary review of all the allegations in the petition, the Committee in its report to the Chairman, Board of Governors, dismissed them, having established they were “not based on any objective and solid facts” pursuant to Resolution No. B/BG/2008/11.

Besides, the committee drew the attention to Article 4 of Resolution No. B/BG/2008/11 which vests in the Chairman of the Board the prerogative to act in consultation with other members to finally determine whether or not a reasonable basis exists to pursue the allegations against Mr Adesina further.

Akinwumi Adesina has been accused by a group of anonymous whistleblowers within the organisation of handing contracts to acquaintances and appointing relatives to strategic positions at the bank, allegations he has consistently denied.

Adesina, a former Nigeria’s Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, was elected as the 8th President of the AFDB on Thursday, May 28, 2015.

He succeeded Donald Kaberuka of Rwanda, and assumed duty on September 1, 2015 in Abidjan

(Premium Times, with additional reports by SunriseNigeria)

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Labour Of Our Heroes Won’t Go In Vain,’ Govs Celebrate Armed Forces Remembrance Day

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Governors across states of the Federation have joined in the celebration of 2022 Armed Forces Remembrance Day.

The Federal Government had earlier ordered the closure of parts of the roads accessing the arcade of the federal secretariat complexes and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Abuja to mark the event in the Federal Capital Territory.

In the South-West, Oyo State Governor Seyi Makinde at the event held on Saturday at the Remembrance Arcade, Government House, Agodi, Ibadan, promised to keep encouraging and working closely with members of the armed forces and the survivors of the fallen heroes

He commended the officers and men of the security agencies for their efforts in battling insecurity in the state, urging them to continue to do their best to ensure that peace reigns in the state and the country at large.

Governor Seyi Makinde

“For Nigerians, some people made sacrifices for us to be where we are right now and also paid the ultimate price.

“So, I believe we should not allow their toil to go in vain,” the governor said.


In Abeokuta, the Ogun state capital, it was a solemn moment as the state governor, Dapo Abiodun joined other dignitaries which include the heads of security agencies, traditional rulers to lay the wreath in remembrance of the Nation’s fallen heroes at the arcade ground in the state capital.

The 21-gun salute was also shot in memory of the fallen heroes and the supreme price they had paid for the unity and peace of the country.

Governor Dapo Abiodun

 

The governor who also inspected the parades and the colour party called on Nigerians to sustain the quest for unity, peace and progress of the country, for socio-economic development and progress.


In the Eastern region, Ebonyi State Governor David Umahi led other members of the state executive council to the event held at the Unity Square in the state capital.

Security Agencies represented at the event include the Nigerian Army; the Nigeria Police Force; the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC); the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA); and the Nigeria Immigration.

Governor David Umahi

The Nigerian Legion Ebonyi State chapter at the event called on both the state and Federal Government to make available enhanced welfare packages as well as provision of job opportunities to the children of servicemen and women who have paid the supreme price defending the country.


Also in Imo State, resident joined their counterparts in other parts of the country to mark the Armed Forces Remembrance Day celebration.

The event which took place at the Ndubuisi Kanu square in Owerri, the Imo state capital, witnessed match past by the armed forces and security operatives as well as the presence of top government functionaries in Imo State.

Governor Hope Uzodimma

Delivering his speech, Governor Hope Uzodimma asked Nigerians to take the opportunity of the Armed Forces Remembrance Day celebration to reflect more on the meaning and importance of sacrifice as it affects the interest of the Nation.

He described the military as the noblest and patriotic profession.

In the South-South, Delta State Governor Ifeanyi Okowa represented by his deputy Kingsley Otuaro led top military and para-military officers to lay wreaths at the statue of the unknown soldier.

The event was held at the cenotaph where the governor inspected the guard of honour mounted by the Nigerian Army, Navy, Airforce and members of the Nigerian Legion.

Governor Ifeanyi Okowa

 

A minute silence was observed while a 21-gun salute was taken in honour of the departed heroes.

Some widows of the fallen heroes also used the opportunity to ask the Federal and State Government to look into their plight and provide support for them to be able to fend for themselves and their families.

Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki in his address held in Benin, the state capital said unguarded talks about Nigeria’s unity will cost lives and the efforts of fallen heroes would have been in vain.

Governor Godwin Obaseki

 

He also disclosed plans to include wives of the fallen heroes in the state’s welfare programmes, adding that some of the legionnaires have already been integrated into the security architecture of the state.


In Akwa Ibom State, Governor Udom Emmanuel called on Nigerians to embrace dialogue in resolving thorny issues in the country.

Governor Udom Emmanuel

 

The governor said most of the circumstances that caused bloodshed in the country’s history would have been settled peacefully if the key players embraced dialogue and peaceful resolution of conflicts.

In Kwara State, Governor Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq urged Nigerians to continue to provide information to the military in order to end the insecurity in the country while also urging the country to appreciate the sacrifices being made to keep the country together.

He also commended the efforts of the Federal Government in enhancing their welfare.


Meanwhile, Sokoto State Governor Aminu Tambuwal appealed to the Federal Government to sustain the payment of pension and gratuity to retired military personnel.

While laying a wreath at the 2022 Armed Forces Remembrance Day celebration in Sokoto, he said this will enable the retired personnel to live well and take care of their needs and it will also serve as an encouragement to the serving personnel to do more in the service of the nation.

He said their services in unquantifiable in ensuring the unity of the nation by laying their lives for the service of the nation.

However, Katsina State Government restated commitment to restore peace and normalcy in the state with several strategies, approaches and mechanisms been introduced by the state to eradicate terrorism in the state.

Governor Aminu Masari during the 2022 Armed Forces Remembrance Day celebration held at the Katsina Peoples’ Square said the relative peace currently being enjoined in the state is due to the dedication, competence and discipline of the troops and other sister security agencies.

He commended the army for the untiring sacrifice towards securing the lives and property of Katsina citizens.


In Niger State, Governor Abubakar Bello said the security agencies should remain resolute to end the security challenges in the country.

Bello disclosed this at the 2022 Nigeria Armed Forces Remembrance Day Celebration held at the Permanent Cenotaph, Minna.

He also commended the efforts of the Federal Government in enhancing their welfare.


Meanwhile, Sokoto State Governor Aminu Tambuwal appealed to the Federal Government to sustain the payment of pension and gratuity to retired military personnel.

While laying a wreath at the 2022 Armed Forces Remembrance Day celebration in Sokoto, he said this will enable the retired personnel to live well and take care of their needs and it will also serve as an encouragement to the serving personnel to do more in the service of the nation.

He said their services in unquantifiable in ensuring the unity of the nation by laying their lives for the service of the nation.

However, Katsina State Government restated commitment to restore peace and normalcy in the state with several strategies, approaches and mechanisms been introduced by the state to eradicate terrorism in the state.

Governor Aminu Masari during the 2022 Armed Forces Remembrance Day celebration held at the Katsina Peoples’ Square said the relative peace currently being enjoined in the state is due to the dedication, competence and discipline of the troops and other sister security agencies.

He commended the army for the untiring sacrifice towards securing the lives and property of Katsina citizens.


In Niger State, Governor Abubakar Bello said the security agencies should remain resolute to end the security challenges in the country.

Bello disclosed this at the 2022 Nigeria Armed Forces Remembrance Day Celebration held at the Permanent Cenotaph, Minna.

He commended the men of Nigeria Armed Forces and other security agencies for protecting the lives of the people especially in dealing with insurgency and criminal elements, urging them not to relent.

The governor urged them to continue to protect the integrity of the nation, promising the support of the state government towards ending the insecurity.

“My call is on the military to remain resolute. Today is a special day where we come to remember our fallen heroes that have lost their lives in wars and in the course of their assignments”, he said.

Highlights of the event were the release of pigeons as a symbol of peace, exchange of pleasantries with the widows of the fallen heroes and members of the legions as well as the inspection of the guard of honour by the Governor.

Taraba State Governor Darius Ishaku in his address urged the Nigeria Army to sustain the momentum against insecurity and ensure that peace reigns across the country.

He said his administration will not relent in supporting the military and other security agencies to ensure that criminal elements are wiped out of the state, as well as avert the recurring herders, farmers clashes and communal crisis.

The governor, who was was represented by his Deputy Haruna Manu assured of prioritising the needs of ex-servicemen and fallen heroes families.

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Former Oyo State Governor, Alao-Akala Passes On

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Otunba Adebayo Christopher Alao-Akala, a former Governor of Oyo State, is dead.

Details of his death are sketchy but sources close to the politician confirmed the tragic incident to SunriseNigeria.

The politician, who had been battling terminal ailment for a while, died in his Ogbomoso country home, on Wednesday morning, according to sources.

A top source in the All Progressives Congress (APC) who confirmed his death to Daily Trust on Wednesday morning, said he died in his room.

“It is true that Oga is dead. He died in the early hours of Wednesday in his room in Ogbomoso. He was full of life last night. In fact, I head he was playing with his children before he went to bed. We are in a mourning mood now,” he said.

Akala was the governor of the state between 2007 and 2011.

Born on June 3, 1950, at Ogbomoso in the Ogbomoso North Local Government Area of Oyo State, Alao-Akala had his elementary school at Osupa Baptist Day School, Ogbomoso before proceeding to Kamina Barracks Middle School, 5th Battalion of Infantry in Tamale, Ghana.

This is the third known death of a prominent Ogbomosho native in a month.

On December 12, 2021, Oba Oladunni Oyewumi, the Soun of Ogbomoso, passed on.

On January 8, 2022, Prof Taibat Danmole, his daughter who was a lecturer at the Lagos State University (LASU), also died.

The deceased, who was a professor of education was married to another university don, Prof. Hakeem Danmole, who is the Dean College of Humanities and Social Sciences at the Al-Hikmah University, Ilorin

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Former Nigerian Leader, Ernest Shonekan Dies, Aged 85

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Ernest Shonekan

Chief Ernest Shonekan who headed the Interim National Government that succeeded the junta of General Ibrahim Babangida, has died.Shonekan died in Lagos at the age of 85.

He was the interim head of the Nigerian Government between August 26 and November 17 1993 when he was ousted in a coup led by late General Sani Abacha.

 

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