Liberal Democrat shadow international development secretary, Lynne Featherstone MP, has written to chancellor Gordon Brown and development secretary Hilary Benn calling on the British government to nominate another candidate or “failing that, to instruct the executive director on the board of the World Bank not to support the nomination”.
Recent events should have demonstrated to the World Bank the importance of a fair selection process, but this appointment has been neither transparent nor open. It is hard to justify how we can lecture others on how to conduct their business when such an important position is decided in this fashion. The selection process must be based on the merits and appropriateness of the candidates. This is vital for the future legitimacy of the World Bank and in order to ensure responsible conduct and effective working. Time is short, but the British government can still act. They have a clear choice – ensure that the best candidate is chosen through an open and transparent process or allow the US to reign free once again.