Nigeria to screen World Bank MD for cabinet role


World Bank managing director Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala will appear in Nigeria’s Senate to be screened for a position in President Goodluck Jonathan’s cabinet, said presidential sources.

Okonjo-Iweala, a respected former finance minister who helped negotiate debt relief in 2005, is expected to return to her old position but with added broad powers over economic management, sources close to the negotiations said.
“She will appear before the Senate tomorrow as her name has already been sent to the Senate President’s office,” a presidential source told Reuters.

The State Security Service (SSS) gave Okonjo-Iweala clearance to be screened by lawmakers after a meeting at SSS offices in Abuja on Monday, another source said.

Jonathan, who was sworn in for his first full term on May 29 after winning April elections, has reappointed 12 ministers from the outgoing government to their old jobs, including oil minister Deziani Alison-Madueke.

The return of so many familiar faces led Jonathan’s critics to question whether his new team will have the reformist credentials it needs. Okonjo-Iweala’s inclusion in Jonathan’s cabinet would bring more credibility to his reform ambitions.