Akinwumi A. Adesina
President, African Development Bank Group
Often described as “Africa’s Optimist-in-Chief”, African Development Bank Group President Dr. Akinwumi A. Adesina (1960) is widely lauded for his visionary leadership and passion for Africa’s transformation.
Formerly the Nigerian Agriculture Minister, Dr. Adesina was first elected President of the African Development Bank Group on 28 May 2015. He was re-elected for a second five-year term on 27 August 2020 with 100% of the votes. On 31 October 2019, Dr. Adesina led the African Development Bank Group to achieve the highest capital increase since the Bank Group’s establishment in 1964, when shareholders from 80 member countries raised the general capital from $93 billion to a historic $208 billion.
With Dr. Adesina at the helm, the African Development Bank Group responded boldly to the coronavirus pandemic. On 3 April 2020, the premier development finance institution launched a landmark $3 billion COVID-19 Social Bond followed by a COVID-19 Crisis Response Facility of $10 billion.
Over the course of his distinguished career, Dr. Adesina has been recognised with numerous awards. On 19 October 2017, the President was conferred with the World Food Prize, generally known as the “Nobel Prize for Agriculture”. On 29 February 2020, he was named African of the Year 2019 by one million readers of the African Leadership Magazine. On 14 December 2020, the Academy of Public Health, the flagship body of the West African Institute of Public Health, announced Dr. Adesina as one of the winners of its 2020 Distinguished Fellowship Award for his successful efforts in helping Africa to curb the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.