The President of the African Development Bank (AfDB) Akinwunmi Adesina, has defended the lender against criticism contained in a report by The Economist over debt and weak governance in the organisation.

It was suggested by the report that rising debts and surging international food and energy prices are affecting the operation of the firm, and shareholders, including foreign partners are scared to ask for change.

According to The Economist, “When taken as a whole they paint a picture of an organisation in need of reform. Its shareholders may have many reasons for not demanding change.

“Borrowing countries may worry that speaking up could result in fewer loans. Non-African donors, some of which are former colonial powers, may worry they will be seen as meddlers.” the publication wrote.

The Economist claimed that there isn’t sufficient oversight on  AfDB’s executives from the organisation’s internal watchdogs.

Responding to the criticism on Sunday, via a statement on his Twitter page, Adesina said that AfDB has a good credit rating above financial institutions in developed countries, stating that out of all 28 concessional financing institutions, CGD rated African Development Fund as second best in the world.

He also cited Global Finance declaring AfDB, in 2021, as the Best multilateral financial institution in the world, adding, “We are a AAA-rated financial institution, the only one in Africa. We have consistently maintained our stellar AAA credit ratings by all major global credit rating agencies, who consistently praise our excellent risk management at the Bank.

“We have an excellent and robust management and governance system. We deliver great value for our clients in Africa. Over the past six years, through our High 5 programs, our work has impacted on 335 million people. We deliver great value.” Adesina wrote.

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