With the consent of the host Government, UN Secretary-General António Guterres has selected Ozonnia Ojielo of Nigeria as the UN Resident Coordinator in Rwanda. The appointment was made public on Tuesday at a news conference held at UN headquarters in New York by Farhan Haq, the Deputy Secretary-spokesperson.
Farhan noted during the announcement that “As you know, Resident Coordinators are senior UN officials who are leading our work on the ground to rescue the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) while supporting ongoing national COVID-19 response and recovery programmes,’’
Why This Matter
Ojielo has more than 25 years of experience working in the field of sustainable development, including managing a global portfolio of projects and programmes for the United Nations in Central Asia and Africa that spanned four continents. He most recently worked as the organization’s Resident Coordinator in Kyrgyzstan after serving for a year as the organization’s Resident Coordinator, the UN Development Program’s Resident Representative, and the UNFPA’s Representative to the Kyrgyz Republic.
He also served as Cluster Director for Governance and Peacebuilding in Africa at the Regional Service Centre for Africa of the UNDP in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, and Director for Conflict Prevention and Recovery at the Bureau for Crisis Prevention and Recovery of the UNDP in New York.
He worked as a lawyer, university professor, journalist, and advisor to truth, justice, and reconciliation commissions as well as human rights commissions in Ghana, Liberia, Malawi, Namibia, and Sierra Leone before joining the UN.
He was also the founder and first president of The Institute of Chartered Mediators and Conciliators, the largest mediation and conciliation organization in Africa. He also served as president of the Centre for Peace in Africa, a regional non-profit in Nigeria.
Ojielo earned his PhD in Peace and Conflict Studies from the University of Ibadan in Nigeria. He is the author of various academic and technical papers. He has master’s degrees in history from the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, and strategic and project management from the Paris Graduate School of Management in France. Ojielo graduated from the University of Nigeria, Nsukka and ASUTECH, both in Nigeria, with bachelor’s degrees in history and law, respectively.