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Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala: Home gal setting the world economic agenda Featured

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She was known for her simple but unique style. She elevated the once upon a time poor fabric, Ankara to Olympian height and created an uncommon identity from the Made in Nigeria wax Her fellow female cabinet member promptly jumped at it and gave it an executive flavour. She is the first female senior member of government to be seen in public neither heavily bedecked in precious stones nor wearing dresses made of expensive fabrics.
She also made high fashion out of her low-cut hair, simple scarf tied seemingly loosely, on her forehead and dresses made of printed cotton.

Welcome to the world of Dr. (Mrs) Ngozi Okonjo Iweala, Nigeria’s former finance Minister and foreign Minister, respectively
Born in June 13, 1954, to Professor Chukuka Okonjo of Ogwashi Uku, Delta State, Dr Okonjo Iweala, who parades an intimidating resume is unarguably the first woman to hold either of those positions. She served as finance minister from July 2003 until her appointment as foreign minister in June 2006, and as foreign minister, until her resignation in August 2006.
Currently serving as as Managing Director of the World Bank, not only does she get royal treatment on the global stage, Okonjo Iweala is of a royal homestead from the Umu Obi Obahai Royal Family of Ogwashi-Uku.

Iweala-Okonjo, who was educated at Harvard University in 1977, earned her Ph.D. in Regional economics and development from the Massaehusetts Institue of Technology. Prior to her ministerial career in Nigeria, she was vice-president and corporate secretary of the World Bank Group. In October 2005, the powerful woman led the Nigerian team that struck a deal with the Paris Club, a group of bilateral creditors, to pay a portion of Nigeria’s external debt (US $12 billion) in return for an $18 billion debt write-off.

She also introduced the practice of publishing each state’s monthly financial allocation from the Federal Government in major Nigerian newspapers. She was instrumental in helping Nigeria obtain its first ever sovereign credit rating.
In 2007, Okonjo-Iweala, whose NGO, NOI Global Consulting, partnered with the Gallup Organisation to introduce an opinion poll, the NOI poll, into the Nigerian polity, is a fellow of the Brookings Institution. She also serves on the Advisory Board of Global Financial Integrity and on the Board of Directors of the World Resources Institute.

The Managing Director of the World Bank has four children. The eldest, Onyinye Iweala received her Ph.D. in Experimental Pathology from Harvard University in 2008 and graduated from Harvard Medical School this year. Her son, Uzodima Iweala, is the author of the critically acclaimed novel Beasts of No Nation which was published in 2005.

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Godwin Ibe

Medical Doctor (GP), IT professional, Web Designer, CELTA Certified Teacher of English, Economist and International Trade Marketer.
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