Board of Directors

CoDA’s work is guided, and the institution is governed, by a Board of eminent African and non-African personalities. The Board Members serve in their personal capacity and are selected among the most eminent, effective and esteemed African and international personalities noted for their professional accomplishments, their national and international leadership experience, and their commitment to Africa’s growth and development.

The current Chairperson of the CoDA Board of Directors is H.E. Olusegun Obasanjo, former President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. Prior to this, the Board was led by H.E. Festus Mogae, former President of the Republic of Botswana.

The work of the Board of Directors has always been supported by the CoDA secretariat which currently has offices at the AUC and ECA. However, reflecting on the various pertinent decisions made by the Board of Directors at its 11th meeting in April 2015, it was proposed that a technical committee should be formed to support the Board.

In line with this proposal, the Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) for the CoDA Board was established following the approval of the Board. The establishment of the TAC was necessary to avoid unchecked autonomy of the secretariat and ensure that its leadership diligently adheres to the Board’s decisions. CoDA is, therefore, led by its Board of Directors with the support of the TAC, which also oversees the CoDA secretariat.

TAC is responsible for reviewing the analytical papers and other documents prepared by the CoDA secretariat and submitting recommendations to the board accordingly. It provides guidance to the secretariat regarding the CoDA annual work programme and oversees the day-to-day functioning of the secretariat on behalf of the Board.

H. E. Olusegun Obasanjo

H.E. Olusegun Obasanjo is former President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and Chair of the CoDA Board of Directors. H.E. Obasanjo served as Nigeria’s Head of State twice, once as a military ruler, from 1976 to 1979, after which he handed power to a democratically elected civilian president, hence becoming the first Military Head of state to transfer power peacefully to a civilian regime in Nigeria. He served again from 1999 to 2007 as the democratically elected President, after Nigeria had its first civilian handover of power from one democratically elected leader to another. H.E. Obasanjo has at different times served as Chairman of the Group of 77, Chairman of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting, and Chairman of the African Heads of State and Government Implementation Committee on NEPAD. He serves on the African Progress Panel to monitor and promote Africa’s development. In 2008, he was appointed by the United Nations as a special envoy for Africa and has since overseen democratic elections on behalf of the African Union and ECOWAS in countries across the continent.

H.E. Mr. Festus Gontebanye Mogae
Board Member

H.E. Mr Mogae was President of Botswana from 1998 to 2008. He is Chairman of the Champions for an HIV-Free Generation, a leadership initiative he launched in 2008 to scale up global response to HIV/AIDS in sub-Saharan Africa. Mr Mogae received the 2008 Mo Ibrahim Foundation Award for Achievement in African Leadership for having “ensured Botswana’s continued stability and prosperity in the face of an HIV/AIDS pandemic which threatened the future of his country and people.” He is co-Chairman of the High-Level Independent Review Panel on Fiduciary Controls and Oversight Mechanisms of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria and a member of the UNAIDS Commission on HIV Prevention. He served as Minister of Finance and Development in Botswana in 1989 and was the Alternate and Executive Director for Anglophone Africa (1976-1980) for the International Monetary Fund in Washington, DC.

H.E. Monique Nsanzabaganwa, Ph.D.
Deputy Chairperson, African Union Commission

H.E. Dr Monique Nsanzabaganwa is the Deputy Chairperson of the African Union Commission. In this capacity, she oversees administration and finance of the Commission, assists the Chairperson in the execution of his functions to ensure the smooth running of the Commission, and acts as the Chairperson in his absence. Dr Nsanzabaganwa holds a Ph.D. in economics, and a honorary doctorate of commerce from the University of Stellenbosch. She has over twenty years of experience developing and leading programmes that drive financial inclusion and economic prosperity. Prior to her election as Deputy Chairperson, she held senior positions in the Government of the Republic of Rwanda, including Minister of State in charge of Economic Planning, Minister of Trade and Industry, and Deputy Governor of the Central Bank. Dr Nsanzabaganwa has supported various gender empowerment initiatives through her membership of the Alliance for Financial Inclusion gender committee, Women's World Banking African Advisory Council, the Graça Machel Trust Expert Group on women's financial inclusion and the digital economy in Africa, New Faces New Voices Rwanda chapter, Unity Club, amongst others. Dr Nsanzabaganwa was elected by the 34th African Union Assembly for a four-year term renewable once. She is the first woman to hold the position of Deputy Chairperson of the African Union Commission.

Dr. Akinwumi Ayodeji Adesina
Ex-Officio Board Member (AfDB)

Dr Akinwumi Ayodeji Adesina is the 8th elected President of the African Development Bank Group. He was elected to the position on 28 May 2015 by the Bank’s Board of Governors at its Annual Meetings in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire. He is the first Nigerian to serve as President of the Bank Group and he is currently serving his second term as president of the Bank. Adesina served as Nigeria’s Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development from 2011 to 2015, during which he implemented bold policy reforms in the fertilizer sector and pursued innovative agricultural investment programmes to expand opportunities for the private sector. He previously served as Vice-President (Policy and Partnerships) of the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA) and as Associate Director (Food Security) at the Rockefeller Foundation in New York, where he worked for a decade (1998-2008) in senior leadership positions, including as Regional Office Director and Representative for Southern Africa. Adesina has received several global awards for his leadership and work in agriculture. In 2010, the United Nations Secretary General, Ban Ki-moon, appointed him as one of 17 global leaders to lead implementation of the Millennium Development Goals, along with Bill Gates, the Spanish Prime Minister and the President of Rwanda. He was named Person of the Year by Forbes Africa magazine in 2013.

Dr. Benedict Okey Oramah
Ex-Officio Board Member (AFREXIMBANK)

Dr Benedict Okey Oramah became President and Chairman of the Board of Directors of the African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) on 21 September 2015. He was previously Executive Vice President in charge of Business Development and Corporate Banking from October 2008. He had joined Afreximbank as Chief Analyst in 1994 and was promoted to the position of Senior Director, Planning and Business Development in 2007. Prior to joining Afreximbank, he was an Assistant Research Manager at the Nigerian Export-Import Bank from 1992. Dr Oramah holds B.Sc., MSc and PhD degrees in agricultural economics. He has published a book, “Foundations of Structured Trade Finance”, and has written several articles on a wide range of African economic, trade and trade finance issues. He is a regular speaker in trade and trade finance conferences around the world. Dr Oramah serves as Chairperson of the Africa Chapter of the International Factors Group (IFG) and is on the Board of the IFG and the editorial boards of Trade and Forfaiting Review and the Journal of African Trade. He is a member of the Consultative Board on World Cocoa Economy of the International Cocoa Organization.

Mr. Abdoulie Janneh
Board Member

H.E. Abdoulie Janneh is a former Under-Secretary-General and Executive Secretary of the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa, Alternate Chair of CoDA Board of Directors, and Executive Director of Mo Ibrahim Foundation. As Executive Secretary of the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa, H.E. Janneh fostered strong partnerships at the highest levels between the Economic Commission for Africa and governments, the private sector, civil society, as well as national, regional and international organizations. He previously held other positions, including UN Assistant Secretary-General and UNDP Regional Director for Africa, resident representative positions, and Deputy Executive Secretary of the United Nations Capital Development Fund.

Dr. Speciosa Wandira-Kazibwe
Board Member

H.E. Wandira-Kazibwe was Vice President of Uganda from 1994 to 2003 and is the United Nations Secretary-General Special Envoy for HIV/AIDS in Africa. A surgeon who received a PhD in Global Health and Population from the Harvard School of Public Health, Dr Wandira-Kazibwe is currently Senior Advisor to the President of Uganda on Population and Health, tasked with coordinating health sector reform. She had served in various cabinet positions: as a Member of Parliament, and as a Member of the Constituent Assembly that drafted Uganda’s 1995 Constitution. H.E. Wandira-Kazibwe is one of the champions for an HIV-Free Generation, an organization of African leaders whose goal is to mobilize and support African leadership and global policy makers to renew and intensify the fight against HIV/AIDS in Africa. She was the first President of the African Women’s Committee on Peace and Development of the African Union.

Mr. Hakim Ben Hammouda
Board Member

H.E. Dr Hakim Ben Hammouda is a former Minister of Economy and Finance of Tunisia, and Member of CoDA Board of Directors. Dr Ben Hammouda served as Minister of Economy and Finance under the interim Prime Minister of Tunisia, Medhi Jomaa. He held several other positions, including as Special Adviser to the President of the African Development Bank, Chief Economist of the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa, and Director of the Institute for Training and Technical Cooperation at the World Trade Organization.

Professor Jendayi Elizabeth Frazer
Board Member

Prof. Jendayi E. Frazer is a Distinguished Public Service Professor at the Heinz College’s School of Public Policy and Management and has been a member of the Faculty at Carnegie Mellon University since 2009. She is known worldwide as a policy leader and expert on African Affairs. She was the leading architect of US-Africa policy for nearly a decade, most recently serving as the US Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs from August 2005 to January 2009. Ambassador Frazer was Special Assistant to the President and Senior Director for African Affairs at the National Security Council from January 2001 until her swearing-in as the first woman US Ambassador to South Africa in June 2004. In recognition of her contributions, Secretary Condoleezza Rice presented Prof. Frazer with the Distinguished Service Award in January 2009, the highest award bestowed by the Secretary of State. In July 2010, President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf of Liberia awarded her with the distinction of Dame Grand Commander in the Humane Order of African Redemption. Prof. Frazer received her Bachelor of Arts degree in political science (honours) and African and Afro-American Studies (distinction) in 1985, a Master of Arts degrees in international policy studies in 1985 and international development education in 1989, and a PhD in political science in 1994, all from Stanford University.

Dr. Cheikh Modibo Diarra
Board Member

H.E Cheikh Modibo Diarra was Prime Minister of Mali from April to December 2012. He is an astrophysicist, a specialist in space exploration and a UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador. In 2006, he was appointed Head of Microsoft Africa at the request of Bill Gates and with whom he has long been a friend. H.E. Diarra was recruited by the NASA and, as their first African researcher, he has participated in programmes such as Magellan (Venus), Ulysses (Sun's pole), Galileo (Jupiter), Mars Observer and Mars Pathfinder. In 1999, he created the Pathfinder Foundation for the Education and Development of Africa which by 2002 had developed the laboratory for solar research in Bamako. In February 2006, he was appointed Head of Microsoft Africa. H.E. Diarra is the founder and President of the African Science and New Technology Summit, Vice President of the World Commission for the Ethics of Scientific Knowledge and Technology in the United Nations, and a member of the Independent Commission of Africa and the Millennium. He was the first President of the Virtual African University and member of the Africa Union Panel of Biotechnology in the Partnership for the Development of Africa. He has received the African Lifetime Achievement Award.

H.E. Abdalla Hamdok
Board Member

Policy Analyst/Economist by profession with over forty years’ experience with public, private and international organizations, with extensive work experience in Africa and the Middle East. Over the years have developed an interest in economic and social policy analysis, focusing on issues related to sustainable development, strategic & corporate planning, poverty analysis, regional integration and trade, labor market, social protection & micro-credit, governance & public financial management and accountability, macroeconomic policies, institutions, capacity development and resource management. Presided over the Transitional Government of The Sudan as the Prime Minister during the period of 2019 to 2021.

H.E. Mr. Erastus Mwencha
Board Member

H.E. Erastus Mwencha was Deputy Chairperson of the African Union Commission from 2008 to 2012. He is a Pan Africanist with over thirty years of progressive experience in policy formulation and institutional transformation at national, regional and continental levels in Africa. Prior to his election at the African Union Commission, he worked at the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa for over 25 years and served as its Secretary General for 10 years. He contributed to the expansion of intra-COMESA trade, developing programmes for private sector cooperation and trade with the rest of world and leading regional hard and soft infrastructure programmes in transport, communication and energy. Mr Mwencha developed the continental negotiating position for the Doha Round of negotiations of the World Trade Organization, Economic Partnership Agreements, African Growth and Opportunity Act and actively supported programmes to integrate women in development. H.E. Mwencha has held several senior positions within the Ministry of Industry in Kenya.

Dr. Rolf M Jeker
Board Member

Dr Rolf M. Jeker, is Chairman of the AO Alliance. He is a former Ambassador and Under-Secretary in the Swiss Government and former Director General and Executive Vice-President of Societe Generale de Surveillance, Geneva. Dr Jeker served as Executive Director at the African Development Bank and Fund and acted as Director of Research at the Bank of Zambia. He was a Senior Fellow of UNITAR for Debt Management in Africa. His main experience and expertise are in international trade, including trade promotion and trade facilitation, economic policy and exchange rate policies, debt management, energy, and environment including climate issues. Mr Jeker’s activities has had a strong focus on Africa and low- and middle-income countries. He has written numerous publications.

Dr. Amany Asfour
Board Member

Dr. Amany Asfour graduated from Faculty of Medicine – Cairo University and had her Master Degree & M.D. degree in Pediatrics at the National Research Center of Egypt. She joined the private sector since she was a student at the Faculty of Medicine. Within a few years she was able to establish her company for Health Care Management and Medical equipment with more than 30 brands. She established the Egyptian Business Women Association in 1995 with the objectives of promoting young generations of Women Entrepreneurs & giving guidance to women business owners of Small & Medium enterprises, increasing role of women in the value chain and value addition. Dr. Asfour than established The Federation of Business & Professional Women BPW – Egypt and subsequently founded the African Alliance for Women Empowerment which has focal points all over Africa & its main target is Women Empowerment in Africa & establishing projects and marketing of products for women entrepreneurs and women owners of small & medium enterprises in the African continent for Africa's economic Growth and increasing Intra Africa Trade. Dr. Asfour is the founder and Chair of the African Congress for Women Entrepreneurs. Dr Asfour is also elected as the Chair of the FEMCOM-Egypt Federation of Business Women Associations in the COMESA Region (Common Market for Eastern & Southern African) .Dr Asfour was also elected as the Chair of the COMESA Business Council the apex Body of Private sector in COMESA and she is the first Woman to chair this organization for 2 terms till 2018. She currently serves as the Chairperson of the Interim Executive Bureau of the African Business Council (AfBC).