AfBD: Akinwumi Adesina cleared by independent probe of corruption allegations

Akinwunmi Adesina

An independent panel of experts, headed by former Irish president Mary Robinson, has cleared the leader of the African Bank of Development (AfDB), Akinwunmi Adesina, of corruption allegations.

According to a report obtained by AFP, Adesina, 60, a charismatic speaker known for his elegant suits and bow ties, became the first Nigerian to helm the AfDB in 2015, but a 15-page report earlier this year claimed that under his watch the bank had been tarred by poor governance, impunity, personal enrichment and favouritism.

Others joined Robinson in the panel include Gambia’s Chief Justice Hassan Jallow and World Bank’s integrity vice president Leonard McCarthy.

The agency quotes a report as saying that Mr Adesina was cleared of all charges that were alleged by unnamed employees.

Mr Adesina, former Nigeria’s Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, was accused of poor governance, impunity, personal enrichment and favouritism. He has denied the allegations.

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An internal investigation had initially cleared him of the allegations, but US Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin personally signed a letter to the board rejecting the outcome.

The US is one of the 27 non-regional members of the AfDB and its second largest shareholder.

“The panel concurs with the committee in its findings in respect of all the allegations against the president and finds that they were properly considered and dismissed by the committee,” AFP quotes the report.