World Bank official under fire in Nigeria

Acerbic exchanges between Action Congress and World Bank vice president Obiageli Ezekwesili followed the disclosure of Nigerian president Umaru Musa Yar’Adua that his forerunner, Olusegun Obasanjo, used USD10 billion over seven years on the country’s power sector without commensurate benefits. Ezekwesili, a cabinet minister under Obasanjo’s administration, immediately proclaimed that the amount spent was not USD10 billion as pointed out by Yar’Adua, but less than USD3 billion. The statement prompted the Nigerian political party to release a scathing statement against the World Bank official. “We are compelled to ask: Is Mrs. Ezekwesili saying that the Nigerian President lied? Did she speak for the World Bank in contesting the figure? Was she defending her role or lack of it in the frittering away of such a huge amount of money without result? We do not speak for this government. But we must warn against the increasing propensity by agents of some international agencies to talk down on the Nigerian people and dictate to the government, in what amounts to a total disregard for the country’s sovereignty,” remarked the party. (Source: AC Faults World Bank Chief On USD4bn Power Sector Expenditure/Leadership-All Africa Global Media)

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