*Okonjo-Iweala Still “In Office”*
This is the case with Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, former Minister of Finance of
the Federal Republic of Nigeria, whose profile continues to soar abroad
despite undue criticisms from some disenchanted fellows.
History is awash with relics of public officials who sank into redundancy,
oblivion and infamy after exit from office. I can give a list both home and
abroad but I don’t have to. You know some of them. Some even lobby and
fight tooth and nail to gain relevance even at the detriment of losing the
trust reposed in them. But this is not the case for Okonjo-Iweala.
Despite leaving office over a year ago, after the inauguration of the
present administration, and amidst allegations from die-hard critics, she
is still “in office” with an acclivitous portfolio enamoured with new
appointments and awards – *internationally*.
From being appointed as Chair of the 28-member Board of the Global Alliance
for Vaccines and Immunisation, GAVI, to joining Lazard, as Senior Advisor,
our dear former Minister remains a gem. It’s no wonder many Nigerians have
called on the present administration countless times to employ her
This also was rebuffed by the detracting camp but the proof of the pudding,
they say, is in the eating and wisdom is identified by her children. My
question is: if the false allegations are really true, did she hoodwink the
international bodies that have been endeared to her because of her
track-record? The records are bare; Okonjo-Iweala stands out.
Recently, she joined 10 other key persons on the board of the international
advisory panel of Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), a
multilateral international Development Bank. By her appointment, she,
alongside the appointees, would provide impartial, objective and
independent advice to the President of the Asian Bank.
And just when we thought her portfolio could take no more, she bagged two
national awards from Liberia and Côte d’Ivoire.
I urge every public official and anyone reading this to aim for such career
pedigree. You can become so outstanding that even after you have exited
your office, you still remain “in office”.