WTO Job: Okonjo-Iweala Thanks U.S., Buhari, Nigerians For Support

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A former Nigerian minister, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, has expressed appreciation to the United States, President Muhammadu Buhari and Nigerians for the support she has enjoyed thus far in her bid to become director general of the World Trade Organisation (WTO).


Mrs Okonjo-Iweala took to her Twitter handle to show gratitude shortly after she was endorsed for the top job by the U.S. government Friday night.


Since last year, President Buhari had been at the vanguard of the campaign for the emergence of Mrs Okonjo-Iweala as the world trade body’s DG.


“Grateful for the expression of support from the US today for DG @WTO. Congratulations to Madam Yoo of Rep. Korea for a hard fought campaign,” she tweeted.


“Thank You President Muhammadu Buhari @MBuhari &all Nigerians for your unflinching support.Thank you friends. Love to my family. Glory to God.”


The United States government announced its endorsement of Mrs Okonjo-Iweala in a statement by its office of trade representative on Friday.


“The Biden-Harris Administration also congratulates Minister Yoo Myung-hee on her strong campaign for this position,” the statement said.


“She is a trailblazer as the Republic of Korea’s first female trade minister and the first candidate from Korea to advance this far in the Director General selection process.



“The United States respects her decision to withdraw her candidacy from the Director General race to help facilitate a consensus decision at the WTO.”


Indications emerged earlier on Friday that Mrs Okonjo-Iweala, a former finance minister and World Bank executive, would likely clinch the coveted post after her final challenger for the position, South Korean Trade Minister and candidate, Yoo Myung-hee, announced her withdrawal.


Ms Yoo made the decision after discussions with the U.S. and other major nations, a statement from Korea’s trade ministry said on Friday.


She also took various issues into account “comprehensively” including the need to revitalise the multilateral organisation, reports said Friday.

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