Nigeria’s Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala is still in the race of becoming the next Director-General of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) even after the international body reduced the number of candidates to five.

Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala

WTO in a Tweet on its official handle @wto on Friday announced that the five “candidates will be moving on for members’ further consideration in the next round of consultations, which resume on 24 September.”

Explaining further on its website, WTO said the five candidates were chosen from eight others after due consultations.

“The WTO took another step towards selecting its next Director-General today (18 September) as General Council Chair David Walker of New Zealand and his two co-facilitators in the selection process disclosed which of the eight candidates had secured the broadest and deepest support from the WTO membership and should consequently advance to the next stage of the process.

“In consultations with Amb. Walker, Amb. Dacio Castillo of Honduras and Amb. Harald Aspelund of Iceland, WTO members indicated that the five candidates who should advance are NgoziOkonjo-Iweala of Nigeria, YooMyung-hee of the Republic of Korea, Amina C. Mohamed of Kenya, Mohammad Maziad Al-Tuwaijri of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, and Liam Fox of the United Kingdom.”

Okonjo-Iweala is Nigeria’s former minister of finance and former Managing Director of the World Bank.

General Council Chair David Walker of New Zealand said WTO membership considers all the five candidates highly qualified and respected individuals.

Walker adds that the second phase of consultations will begin on September 24 and run until October 6.

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