JOHANNESBURG, ( The Southern African Times) – African Union (AU) chair President Cyril Ramaphosa said Africa must rally behind Nigeria’s Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala – one of the two remaining candidates for the position of World Trade Organization(WTO) director general.
Okonjo-Iweala and South Korea’s Yoo Myung-hee are the two remaining candidates in the third and final round of the selection process.
He said Okonjo-Iweala was a highly distinguished African who had excelled in various public offices in her native Nigeria, including responsibilities in the AU, and in numerous international assignments.
President Ramaphosa said African regions and countries should unite and support the African candidate because her leadership of the WTO would assist in the full integration of the continent as an important player in the global multilateral trading system.
This is especially now that the continent is working on operationalising the African Continental Free Trade Area.
Ramaphosa said he was proud of the high calibre of the candidates from the continent, including Abdel Hamid Mamdouh of Egypt and Amina Mohamed of Kenya who were eliminated in the earlier rounds.
But he said now the continent must spare no effort to ensure that Okonjo-Iweala made history by being elected as the first African to be at the helm of the WTO.