AfDB president Akinwunmi Adesina and President Buhari after he delivered Antonio Guterres message on Lake Chad fundraising

ADEBAYO OBAJEMU

As part of moves to shore up support for himself against his traducers, the President of the African Development Bank (AfDB), Akinwumi Adesina, on Tuesday met with President Muhammadu Buhari at the presidential villa.

The meeting was to build support as pushback on accusation by a group of whistleblowers for official misconduct and the pressure by the United States Government for an independent probe of all allegations.

The meeting was disclosed in a tweet posted on the president’s official Twitter handle.

The meeting which lasted for about 45 minutes was also attended by the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed; Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama, and the Chief of Staff to the President Ibrahim Gambari.

The President in his statement said, ‘’Nigeria stands solidly behind Akinwumi Adesina in his re-election bid as the President of the African Development Bank (ADB). We will work with all leaders and stakeholders in AfDB to ensure that he re-elected on the strength of his achievements during this term.

‘’In 2015, when you were to be elected for the first term, I wrote to all African leaders, recommending you for the position, I didn’t say because you were a PDP Minister, and I belonged to the APC, so I would withhold my support.’’

Adesina has continued to deny the allegations and maintain his innocence.

“I maintain my innocence with regard to trumped-up allegations that unjustly seek to impugn my honour and integrity, as well as the reputation of the African Development Bank,” Adesina said recently while responding to the accusations.

The Federal Government has, however, continued to rally support for Adesina as the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed in a letter urged the board of the AfDB to ignore calls for an independent investigation of Mr Adesina.