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Nigerian retired ambassador becomes D-8 organisation’s Secretary-General

By Esther Kalu

A Nigerian retired Ambassador, Isiaka Imam has assumed office as the Secretary-General of an intergovernmental organization, D-8 Organisation for Economic Cooperation in Istanbul, Turkey.

Isiaka was said to have became the Secretary-General based on the rotational leadership system which ran in the organization in alphabetic order with due consideration for competence, integrity, and experience as the role was open for Nigeria.

As contained in a statement issued on Wednesday in Abuja by the D-8 country office in Nigeria, it was stated that it was Nigeria’s turn to take the helm of affairs of the intergovernmental organisation.

It stated that Imam’s emergence as the new Secretary-General was by consensus from among the nationals of the Member States and approval by the Summit for a non-renewable four-year term.

Also, it noted that the Imam’s appointment is critical to Nigeria as the office of the Secretary-General of the D-8, during this tenure, will provide Nigeria with a veritable platform to achieve President Buhari’s economic diversification agenda.

It stated: “It is the turn of Nigeria to take the helm of affairs of the intergovernmental organisation, therefore, Imam assumes duty as Secretary-General of D-8 based on the principle of rotation in alphabetic order.

“This is in consonance with Article 9.3 of the D-8 Charter, which stipulates that the Secretary-General shall be appointed on recommendation by the Council of Ministers. The Secretary-General will be of the rank of Ambassador in the diplomatic service of the Member State,”

“Through trade cooperation largely driven by the non-oil sector and partnerships in other priority areas of comparative advantage,” it added.

As gathered, Imam is a retired Ambassador, who hails from Ilorin, Kwara, he joined the Nigeria Foreign Service in 1993. He served in different capacities at the Nigerian Mission in Jeddah; Saudi Arabia; Pretoria; South Africa; Tokyo, Japan; and Brasilia, Brazil, respectively. He was conferred with the title of Ambassador in-situ by President Muhammadu Buhari in Council in 2020, who also approved his nomination as Secretary-General of D-8 in 2021.

Also, the D-8, founded in 1997, is an intergovernmental organisation that comprises Bangladesh; Egypt; Indonesia; Iran; Malaysia; Nigeria; Pakistan; and Turkey. The aspiration of the D-8 is to become an economic powerhouse that will promote sustainable development of its member states to become major actors in the global economic system.

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