Mr. Charles Abani is a seasoned international development practitioner with over 25 years of experience in the public, private and non-profit sectors having worked in senior country and regional leadership roles in Africa, Asia, and in Europe. Specifically, he has worked with ActionAid International, Oxfam GB, Absolute Return for Kids, Palladium and Chemonics. Mr. Abani has also led the successful implementation of projects for DFID and USAID. Most recently, Charles served as Africa Director in Chemonics’ UK Division, prior to which he led USAID’ flagship civil society project in Nigeria – USAID-SACE.
Mr. Abani is from the Federal Republic of Nigeria and holds a BA in History from the University of Nigeria, an MSC in Political Science from Ahmadu Bello University and an executive management certificate from Oxford University.
He takes over from Ms. Sylvia Lopez-Ekra who served in dual capacity as UN Resident Coordinator ai for 18 months and as Chief of Mission for the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) in charge of Ghana, Togo and Benin.
Ms. Sylvia Lopez-Ekra has worked for the International Organization for Migration (IOM) for the past 15 years. She currently serves as Chief of Mission/Country Representative for the IOM office in Ghana, Togo and Benin actively engaged in supporting migration management in these countries. Prior to joining the Ghana Team, Ms. Lopez-Ekra was based in Geneva, at IOM Headquarters, where she headed the Organization’s Gender Coordination Unit. Before that, she worked as a project manager, in charge of empowerment and income-generating projects for conflict-affected women in Guinea, Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Ms. Lopez-Ekra has expertise in a wide variety of migration-related topics. She holds a B.A in Law and a Master’s degree in Public Administration from the Panthéon-Sorbonne University in Paris.
Mr. Niyi Ojuolape is UNFPA’s Resident Representative. Prior to this role, he served as the Chief of Staff a.i. at the Headquarters in New York, as the Special Assistant to the Executive Director, a position which he held for six and a half years during which he provided specialized technical support to the executive management of the organization and provided strategic support. Mr. Ojuolape has a rich career experience in international development working in the Democratic Republic of Congo as acting Deputy Representative of UNFPA. Before joining UNFPA in 2011, Mr. Ojuolape served the Nigerian Government severally as Special Assistant to the Minister of Health and as the Chief Programme Officer for Donor Coordination in the Nigerian National Agency for the Control of AIDS (NACA). He holds a Master of Science in Finance from the University of Calabar and a Banking and Finance Degree from Ondo State University in Nigeria.
Ms. Angela Trenton-Mbonde has extensive experience in public health, development and HIV, particularly in the areas of technical collaboration, policy and strategy. She has been with the UN system for over 30 years and has served with UNAIDS in different capacities in various postings at the country, regional and global levels. She is a champion for women’s empowerment. Ms. Trenton-Mbonde holds a Bachelor’s degree in History from the University of Guyana and a Master’s in Health Services Management and Policy from the George Town University, USA. She has also completed course work for doctorate studies in International Relations at the School of Diplomacy and International Relations, Geneva, Switzerland.
With 21 years of international professional experience, Ms. Anne-Claire Dufay Demoulin has worked in East Jerusalem and in Bosnia and Herzegovina as UNICEF Deputy Special Representative and Deputy Representative respectively for a total period of 8 years. She also served as UNICEF Chief of Child Protection in Myanmar and East Timor. Before joining the UN, Ms. Dufay worked with local NGOs in Guatemala (Casa Alianza and Proden) in the areas of Child Rights and Protection, and with the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Paris. She holds a Post-Master Degree in Public International Law (Diplôme d’Etudes Appliquées en Droit des Relations Economiques Internationales et Communautaires et du Développement), from the Paris X-Nanterre University, France.
Ms. Esther Wairimu Kiragu is a Lawyer by profession. She brings to the Ghana operation over 23 years of experience with UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency. Having served in different capacities in different countries in Africa and in Europe, Ms. Kiragu has been actively involved in the search for creative solutions for protracted refugee situations and the promotion of protection for refugees and other forcibly displaced on the continent and in the world. She has a Bachelor of Laws (LLB) Degree in Nairobi, Kenya and Master of Laws (LLM) Degree in Auckland New Zealand.
Mr. Azizi Fakhruddin brings to his post a wealth of knowledge spanning for more than 23 years of experience. He is adept in the field of humanitarian and development programmes with different UN agencies including the UNDP and international organizations. Prior to his arrival in Ghana in 2017, Mr. Fakhruddin Azizi worked as UNIDO Representative for the Philippines and in Afghanistan. Mr. Azizi established a new Policy Center at the Kabul University called Center for Policy and Human (CPHD) and was a resource person for UNDP/BCPR (Bureau for Crisis Prevention and Recovery) global network. He holds an M.A in Management and a second M.A. in Management for Sustainable Economic Development.
Ms. Ifeoma Charles-Monwuba is a development specialist with more than 20 years’ experience in public health, development communication, social marketing and advertising. She has multi-disciplinary training in mass communication, international law and diplomacy as well as international health and population studies. Prior to joining the UN in 2018, Ifeoma spent nearly 10 years with ActionAid and held a variety of roles in Nigeria, Haiti, and Senegal where she was ActionAid Country Director. Before that she served as Head of Governance, Policy and Partnerships for WaterAid Nigeria (2005 -2009). Prior to WaterAid, Ifeoma worked for Nigeria’s foremost public health NGO, the Society for Family Health (SFH) and for a leading Nigerian advertising agency in the private sector.
Ms. Jocelyn Brown Hall is the Representative of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) Ghana Country Office. Ms. Brown Hall joined FAO in April, 2019, after serving for 22 years in the U.S. Department of Agriculture, where she oversaw USDA’s international agricultural development and food security programs, totaling nearly $2 billion annually.
Ms Brown Hall, a national of the United States, holds a master’s of business administration (MBA) in international business and development from the George Washington University, Washington, D.C. She also graduated magna cum laude from Harvard University, of Cambridge, Massachusetts, with a degree in American Literature.
Mr. Abdourahamane Diallo has been with UNESCO since 1994 as a consultant in the field of international business. He comes to the UNESCO Accra Office with vast experience in leadership positions, having previously, served as the Head of Office and Representative of UNESCO in Kinshasa in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and Brazzaville in the Republic of Congo. Mr. Diallo holds a degree in engineering (1991) from the Ecole des hautes etudes industrielles in Lille, France, and a Master of Business Administration in international business engineering (1994) from the Institut superieur de gestion in Paris, France.
Ms. Rukia Yacoub has over 20 years of experience working with a number of UN agencies including FAO, UNICEF. She was with WFP in Yemen, Egypt, Sudan and Algeria. Prior to joining the UN, Ms. Yacoub worked with MSF-Holland based in Rwanda. Ms. Yacoub has years of experience in crisis management, coordination and partnership building working in crisis areas and disaster relief environment. She has an MSc in Human from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, UK.
Mr. Elsadani Salem is a development professional with deep experience in rural development, agriculture, irrigation, drainage and water resources management. He has over 15 years of experience working with the World Bank, the African Development Bank and International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) in Kenya and as Head of IFAD in Sudan. Mr. El Sadani Salem has proven track record project development; portfolio management; sectoral and country strategy development; and policy dialogue. He has hands on experience in engagement with stakeholders; developing Public Private Partnerships (PPPs); Community Development, Conflict Resolution; Climate Change; Rural Finance; Development of Rural Enterprises; Mr. Elsadani Salem holds PhD in Soil and Water Management.