BY EMEKA EJERE

Former Nigeria’s Finance Minister, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, is the best candidate, based on merit, to head the World Trade Organisation (WTO) as its Director General, minister of state for Industry, Trade and Investment, Mariam Katagum, has said

Katagum, who stated this on Monday in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja, argued that the former minister should be elected to head WTO, considering her antecedence, competence and experience.

Katagum, who is the Chairperson of the Okonjo-Uweala Campaign Team, said the WTO was facing a lot of problems, adding that a person of Okonjo-Iweala’s standing was required to steer the ship of the organisation.

She said, “We are looking forward for her to be the next D-G of the WTO because she is the best choice for the job.

“The WTO is an organisation that sets up rules for trade, and has trade facilitation and dispute resolution mechanism.

“Being the head of that organisation, you need a lot of experience and negotiation skills, political and economic background to make it work.

“Only a D-G with the requisite political and negotiating skills, coupled with multilateral experience, can ensure deep engagement of the members to restore trust and build a truly efficient organisation.

“In the history of the WTO, there has never been an African male or female that has headed that organisation.

“Secondly, there has never been a woman head. So, again, she will be the first African, the first woman and the first Nigerian to hold the position of the director-general of WTO.”