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FG Assures Okonjo-Iweala Will Emerge WTO DG, Dismisses US Threat

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Okonjo-Iweala

The Federal Government of Nigeria has disregarded the position of the United States not to support the candidacy of Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala as the new Director-General of the World Trade Organisation (WTO).

Recall that the representative of the US at the WTO had stated that the country would not support the consensus candidate of Okonjo-Iweala.

Reacting to the position, the presidency restated its support for the ex-managing director of the World Bank in a statement issued on Thursday, October 29, by the spokesperson for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ferdinand Nwonye.

The Federal Government said: “Nigeria will continue to engage relevant stakeholders to ensure that the lofty aspiration of her candidate to lead the World Trade Organisation is realised.”

The ministry added that Okonjo-Iweala had secured the support of the majority of the WTO members with only the United States opposing her.

Further, it stated that a meeting of the General Council of the WTO has been scheduled for November 9, 2020, for the final decision on the election process.

The statement further stated: “The ministry of foreign affairs wishes to inform that the third and final round of the selection process of the Director-General of the World Trade Organization was concluded on Tuesday, 27th October 2020, and the result was formally announced on Wednesday, 28th October 2020.

“The candidate from Nigeria, Dr. Okonjo-Iweala has secured the support of the majority of the member countries but is yet to be declared and returned the winner. This is because apart from winning the election, all the 164 Member States of WTO were expected to adopt the winner by consensus, in accordance with the rule of procedure of the WTO.

“It is important to highlight that Dr Okonjo-Iweala has secured cross-regional backing with only the United States opposing the consensus.”

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