By Judith Gicobi
Nanjala Nyabola, a Kenyan academic and researcher, and a Rwandan national are among the 12 members of the United Nations’ high-level advisory board on effective multilateralism.
The only East Africans on the recently created board are Ms. Nyabola and Donald Kaberuka of Rwanda, who will be co-chaired by former Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and former Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Löfven.
The board’s mission will be to expand on the concepts in the Secretary-report, General’s Our Common Agenda, which was launched in September 2021.
The centrality of women and girls is one of our Common Agenda ideas, as is the necessity to consider the interests of young individuals and future generations.
The board will be assisted in its activities by the UN University’s Centre for Policy Research, which will work closely with the Secretary-Executive General’s Office.
The interaction of technology, media, and community is the subject of Ms. Nyabola’s work. She is the Director of Advox, Global Voices’ digital rights research and writing initiative, and the author of Digital Democracy, Analogue Politics: How the Internet Era is Transforming Kenyan Politics (Zed Books, 2018) and Traveling While Black: Essays Inspired by a Life on the Move (Zed Books, 2018). (Hurst Books, 2020).
Mr. Kaberuka is the Chairman and Managing Partner of SouthBridge, a Pan-African investment and financial advisory organization. He is also the African Union’s Peace Fund High Representative and the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria’s Board Chair.
Azza Karam of Egypt is Africa’s other representative on the board. Ms. Karam is the Secretary-General of Religions for Peace, a multi-faith leadership organization, as well as a Professor of Religion and Development at Amsterdam’s Vrije Universiteit.
Other members of the board are: Xu Bu (China), Poonam Ghimire (Nepal), Jayati Ghosh (India), Tharman Shanmugaratnam (Singapore), Anne-Marie Slaughter (United States), Ilona Szabó de Carvalho (Brazil), and Danilo Türk (Brazil) are the other board members (Slovenia).