who will be next World Bank President What will they do


More Africans back resignation. Several more African civil society voices are calling for Wolfowitz to go. But some international groups are being slow to make their positions clear.

Vitus Azeem, a spokesman for Integrated Social Development Centre - a Ghanaian NGO, says the most honourable thing for Wolfowitz to do is to resign: “With this situation one would expect that he should just resign…he should just give up,” he said.

“If it is an African leader who unduly favoured a crony, the US would call for his head, now it is Wolfwitz, and Bush is not doing anything. I think that hypocrisy must stop,” Ken Asamoah, a banker told Black Britain in Accra.

Robert Shaw a board member of Transparency International in Kenya added his voice to the growing chorus of discontent: "People are watching to see how it is handled by the board because what has come out - whether you call it corruption or something else and he himself has admitted it was a miscalculation of judgment - something went wrong."

Separately, I've been informed that there has been a lively correspondence between several African Transparency International chapters and their HQ in Berlin. The Africans are pushing for a similar line to that mentioned just above. For now, however, TI is sticking with its position outlined in the mealy-mouthed statement of 17 April which focusses on the system for handling conflicts of interest rather than the conflicts themselves and those responsible. This is surely getting embarassing now that so much evidence has emerged and so many Bank senior staff, editorial writers and others have made their positions clear.

Other major civil society groups which normally rush out media statements on key development issues have also been slow to express themselves on this. Much slower than they have been on other similar stories. How much evidence or political cover do people need?

Alex Wilks ~ April 24, 2007

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