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May 19, 2007 / Mridul

No Bush-recommended Officials For World Bank Top Job

With Paul Wolfowitz now gone the White House intends to name his successor quickly at the multilateral bank. Since a major part of the money in the World Bank’s treasury comes from America, the top job has been traditionally filled by an American.

The potential candidates include former Deputy Secretary of State Robert Zoellick and current Deputy Treasury Secretary Robert Kimmitt. The name of outgoing Prime Minister of Britain Tony Blair is also doing the rounds.

Till now the World Bank board has, without making any noise, put the stamp of consent on the name of the candidate selected by the US President. But after the Wolfowitz episode the board should not blindly accept what the US government proposes to them.

Like Wolfowitz, both Robert Zoellick & Robert Kimmitt have served under President Bush and were part of the government during the planning & execution of the Iraq War. These men should not be given the momentous post of the World Bank President. Nor should the name of Tony Blair, the co-architect of the Iraq War, be considered.

The board members should realize their moral responsibility and use their discretion to choose a suitable candidate, after all the previous President morally failed in fulfilling his duties. The World Bank should not be run by an official who has worked with or under President Bush. Wolfowitz did nothing to improve the way of working of the World Bank; instead he tarnished the image of the international institution.

A suitable candidate could come from a well established multinational financial institution having significant credentials & strong work ethics. It’s time that the World Bank chooses how it wants to be seen by the world.

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