AfDB appoints new acting Vice President to replace Jennifer Blanke

by Akeem Alao
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The African Development Bank (AfDB) Group has announced the appointment of Wambui Gichuri as Acting Vice President- Agriculture, Human and Social Development.

The announcement follows the resignation of the erstwhile Vice President of Agriculture, Human and Social Development, Dr Jennifer Blanke, about 4 weeks ago.

This was disclosed by the bank in a press statement on July 4, 2020.

Wambui who joined the African Development Bank Group in 2018 as Director, Water Development and Sanitation, currently supervises the Bank’s water sector program of over $ 4.5 billion covering 44 countries and multinational projects.

Wambui has a supervisory role over two divisions, namely the Water Development, Coordination and Partnerships, and Water Security and Sanitation divisions, as well as the African Water Facility divisions, a project preparation facility.

She also leads the development and coordination of the technical program, manages the department’s human resources and budget, and the development of extensive partnership activities.

Her leadership role includes water sector policy dialogue, strategy and business development, and spearheading innovations.

Before joining the African Development Bank, she worked for the World Bank where she served in various capacities for twenty years, including 17 years in water resources management, supply, sanitation, irrigation and drainage, with vast experience in Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean.

Wamgui holds a Master’s Degree in Economics from the University of Nairobi, Kenya (1988); a Bachelor of Philosophy degree in Economics (1986) and a Bachelor’s degree in Economics and Sociology from (1983) from the same university.

The President of the African Development Bank Group, Akinwumi Adesina, expressed his delight in having Wamgui in that role due to her wealth of experience and leadership skills

Adesina said, “I am very pleased that Wambui agreed to step into this role as Acting Vice President. The Vice Presidency Complex on Agriculture, Human and Social Development has some of our largest programs and flagship initiatives.

“With her extensive experience, leadership, people management skills, and strong execution capacity, I am confident that she will help strengthen the team and accelerate execution on critical programs and initiatives”.

Nairametrics had reported that the former vice president for Agriculture, Human and Social Development, Jennifer Blanke, stepped down from her role with effect from July 4, 2020, on purely family reasons.

She said that she intended to rejoin her family in Switzerland after a very fulfilling time at the bank.

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