Akinwumi Adesina

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Akinwumi Adesina
Akinwumi Adesina - 2014 (cropped).jpg
Akinwumi Adesina in 2014
8th President of the African
Development Bank
Assumed office
1 September 2015
Preceded byDonald Kaberuka
Nigerian Agriculture Minister
In office
Preceded byAbba Sayyadi Ruma
Succeeded byAudu Ogbeh
Personal details
Born (1960-02-06) 6 February 1960 (age 60)[1]
Alma materUniversity of Ife
Purdue University (PhD)

Akinwumi "Akin" Adesina is the President of the African Development Bank. He previously served as Nigeria's Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development.[2] Until his appointment as Minister in 2010, he was Vice President of Policy and Partnerships for the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA).[3] In 2015, he was elected as the President of the African Development Bank. He was the first Nigerian to hold the post.

Early life and career[edit]

Adesina was born to a Nigerian farmer in Ibadan, Oyo State.[4] He attended a village school and graduated with a Bachelors in Agricultural Economics with First Class Honors from the University of Ife, Nigeria (1981), where he was the first student to be awarded this distinction by the university. He pursued his studies at Purdue University in Indiana, briefly returning to Nigeria in 1984 to get married.[5] He obtained his PhD (Agricultural Economics) in 1988 from Purdue where he won the Outstanding PhD Thesis for his research work.[6]

From 1990 to 1995, Adesina served as a senior economist at West African Rice Development Association (WARDA) in Bouaké, Ivory Coast.

He worked at the Rockefeller Foundation since winning a fellowship from the Foundation as a senior scientist in 1988. From 1999 to 2003 he was the representative of the Foundation for the southern African area. From 2003 until 2008 he was an associate director for food security.

Minister of Agriculture, 2010–2015[edit]

Adesina was the Nigerian Agriculture Minister from 2010 to 2015. During this time the Permanent Secretary at the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development was Ibukun Odusote.[7] Adesina was named as Forbes African Man of the Year for his reform of Nigerian agriculture. He introduced more transparency into the fertiliser supply chain. He also said that he would give away mobile phones to farmers but this proved too difficult. One of the reasons was the lack of a mobile network in country areas.[8]

In 2010, United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon appointed him as one of 17 global leaders to spearhead the Millennium Development Goals.

President of the African Development Bank, 2015–present[edit]

On 28 May 2015, Adesina was elected the presumptive President of the African Development Bank. He began his tenure of the office on 1 September 2015.[9] He is the eighth president in the organization's history, and the first Nigerian to hold the post.

He launched a strategy based on energy, agriculture, industrialization, regional integration and bettering Africans' lives. The Board of Executive Directors approved the reorganization of the structure around these five priorities.

In September 2016, Adesina was appointed by United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to serve as member of the Lead Group of the Scaling Up Nutrition Movement.[10]

In 2017, he was awarded 2017 World Food Prize.[11] Upon receiving the prize on October 21, 2017. Adesina donated the $250,000 he received to the development of African youth in agriculture.

Personal life[edit]

While at Purdue University Adesina and his wife, along with another couple, started a Christian group called the African Student Fellowship.[5] He and his wife Grace have two children, Rotimi and Segun.[12]


  • In July 2007, he was awarded the YARA Prize for the African Green Revolution in Oslo.
  • In 2008, Purdue University’s College of Agriculture gave him their Distinguished Agricultural Alumni Award.
  • In 2010 he was awarded an Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters by Franklin and Marshall College
  • In 2013, he was named as Forbes Africa Person of the Year.[8]
  • On May 5, 2015, he was awarded an Extraordinary Achievement Award by Silverbird Television, Nigeria.
  • On June 26, 2017, he was named winner of the World Food Prize.
  • In 2018 he was awarded an Honorary Doctor by Afe Babalola University.[13]
  • On June 4, 2019, he was awarded an Honorary Doctor of Science Degree by the University of Alberta, Canada
  • On January 28th, 2020, he was awarded Honorary Doctor of Science by the Federal University Of Agricture, Abeokuta, Nigeria.[14]



  1. ^ The President's biography, African Development Bank
  2. ^ "Interview: Akinwumi Adesina, Minister of Agriculture, Nigeria". This is Africa. 30 July 2013. Archived from the original on 2015-01-12. Retrieved 19 September 2014.
  3. ^ "Transformation agenda, a surgical operation on Nigeria - Agric Minister". LinkedIn. 19 June 2012.
  4. ^ "Akinwumi Adesina: from farmer's son to Africa bank chief". African Spotlight. 28 May 2015. Archived from the original on 2016-09-22. Retrieved June 1, 2015.
  5. ^ a b Delmar Broersma (2017). God's Surprises Along the Journey. pp. 89–93. ASIN B077DZ8JTP.
  6. ^ "Dr. Akinwumi A. Adesina". High-Level Meeting on Drought National Policy. March 2013. Archived from the original on 2013-08-07. Retrieved 19 September 2014.
  7. ^ NIRA gets 3 life Patrons, IT Realms, Retrieved 23 January 2016
  8. ^ a b "Nigeria's Akinwumi Adesina named Forbes African of the Year". BBC. December 3, 2013. Retrieved 23 January 2016.
  9. ^ Dogbevi, Emmanuel K. (1 September 2015). "Africa can no longer manage poverty, we must eliminate it – Adesina". Ghana Business News. Retrieved 1 September 2015.
  10. ^ Secretary-General Appoints 29 Global Leaders to Spearhead Fight against Malnutrition United Nations, press release of 21 September 2016.
  11. ^ "AfDB President Akinwumi Adesina wins $250,000 World Food Prize". africanews. 27 June 2017.
  12. ^ Profile:Akinwuni Adesina, Ogala Wordpress
  13. ^ Bank, African Development (2019-02-08). "Afe Babalola University Confers Honorary Doctorate Degree on African Development Bank President Akinwumi Adesina". African Development Bank - Building today, a better Africa tomorrow. Retrieved 2020-02-03.
  14. ^ FUNAAB (2020-01-30). "27th Convocation Begins". FUNAAB. Retrieved 2020-02-03.
  15. ^ "Akinwumi A. Adesina à Caïd Essebsi: La BAD disposée à soutenir la Tunisie dans divers domaines".