Lagos - Minister of Finance and Coordinating Minister for the Economy, Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, has received praise from the United States institution that has awarded her an honorary Doctorate degree.
Yale University, said to be one of the United States of America’s most prestigious institutions of higher learning, on Monday awarded her a Doctor of Humane Letters at Yale’s 2015 Commencement Ceremony in New Haven, Connecticut.
She will be only the second Nigerian in the university’s 314-year history to receive its highest honour after Nobel Laureate Wole Soyinka who received an honorary Doctor of Letters in 1980.
President of the University, Prof. Peter Salovey, described Okonjo-Iweala as “a brilliant reformer and dedicated public servant.”
He added Minister had “spearheaded efforts to stabilize and grow Nigeria’s economy, battling widespread government corruption and creating greater fiscal transparency and discipline.”
Yale’s honorary doctorate degree is seen globally as a very important honour.
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According to the institution “those who have received honorary degree are scholars, public servants, Nobel Prize winners and heads of states.
“Collectively, they represent the aspirations of this institution. Yale honorary degree recipients serve as models of excellence and service to our students, to our graduates, to our community and to the world,” the institution says.
As Finance Minister in 2004, Okonjo-Iweala and the economic team that she led helped Nigeria obtain debt relief, wiping out $30 billion of Paris club debt, leading to a tripling of the growth rates.
In 2011, Okonjo-Iweala has focused on building solid foundations and institutions critical for the survival and sustenance of the economy. She bravely fought corruption in governance with fierce dedication and unflagging energy.
Yale had in the past honored a handful of other Africans such as Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and Archbishop Desmond Tutu.
- CAJ News