Arkebe Loses out to Germany Candidate for UNIDO’s Top Position

ADDIS ABABA – Arkebe Okubay has failed in his bid to lead the UN’s Industrial Development Organisation (Unido).

Arkebe, a special adviser to the Prime minister office os Ethiopia, lost out to German Development Minister Gerd Müller.

In a statement late Tuesday, the UN Industrial agency said its Industrial Development Board has recommended Müller to be the Organization’s next Director General.

The Board’s recommendation will be forwarded for approval to the General Conference – the Organization’s highest policymaking organ – at its nineteenth session, which will take place from 29 November to 3 December 2021.

Müller was running against Arkebe, who had been the only African in the running, and Bernardo Calzadilla Sarmiento of Bolivia.

Arkebe had won the endorsement of the African Union (AU) and a number of African heads of state, including Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed.

Müller will replace the current head Li Yong of China, who has lead Unido since 2013.

“I am thankful for the great confidence that was bestowed upon me to lead the United Nations Industrial Development Organization after the upcoming General Conference,” said Müller, Germany’s Federal Minister for Economic Cooperation and Development.

Based in Austria’s capital Vienna, the Unido is a specialized agency of the United Nations that assists countries in economic and industrial development.


Featured Image: Arkebe Okubay is a policymaker with more than 30 years of experience (Photo File)