Africa: Amina Mohamed Leads Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala in Battle for Leadership of the World Trade Organization

Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala.

Johannesburg — As the race for the role of Director General of the World Trade Organization enters a decisive, two of the leading candidates are from Africa with only one of them expected to be among the two finalists after October 6.

Both are women with formidable experience. Amina Mohamed, Kenya's current Sports, Heritage & Culture Secretary is the former Cabinet Secretary for Foreign Affairs and veteran Secretary of three other ministries. Nigeria's former Finance Minister Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala served in the administration of President Goodluck Jonathan.

Outside their respective countries, Mohamed has served at the World Trade Organization, where she chaired the General Council in 2005. Okonjo-Iweala worked for 25 years at the World Bank in Washington DC and served as managing director from 2007 to 2011.

While the competition has become a battle between two of Africa's most accomplished women, the combined trade and diplomacy experience of Mohamed has put her in the lead.

Reports linked to Okonjo-Iweala's tenure as Nigeria's Finance Minister, when $20 billion dollars of Nigerian oil money went missing from a government account have resurfaced and continue to plague her.

Rob Hersov is founder and chairman of invest Africa

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