Press Releases

    Biographical Note

    SG/A/928
         BIO/3666
        13 June 2005

    Secretary-General Appoints Ibrahim A. Gambari of Nigeria As New Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs

    NEW YORK, 10 June (UN Headquarters) -- The Secretary-General today announced the appointment of Ibrahim Agboola Gambari of Nigeria as the new Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs, succeeding Kieran Prendergast, effective 1 July 2005. He will serve until the end of the Secretary-General’s term.

    Ibrahim A. Gambari currently holds the position of Under-Secretary-General and Special Adviser on Africa at the United Nations. In that capacity, his functions include promoting UN and international support for African development, in general, and the New Partnership for African Development (NEPAD). Mr. Gambari served as Special Representative of the Secretary-General and Head of the United Nations Mission to Angola, from September 2002 to February 2003.

    Before joining the UN Secretariat in 1999, Mr. Gambari served as the Permanent Representative of Nigeria to the United Nations. He was also a senior member of the Nigerian delegation to 10 sessions of the General Assembly). Mr. Gambari served as President of the Security Council on two occasions when Nigeria was a member of the Security Council. He also chaired the UN Special Committee against Apartheid, which successfully saw the demise of apartheid and the establishment of democratic rule in South Africa. Prior to his tenure as Ambassador/Permanent Representative, Mr. Gambari served as Minister of External Affairs of Nigeria. He had served as Director-General, Nigerian Institute of International Affairs.

    Born in Nigeria in 1944, Mr. Gambari attended Kings College, Lagos, as well as the London School of Economics, where he obtained a bachelor's degree in political science with a specialty in international relations. He received his M.A. in 1970 and his Ph.D. in 1974 in Political Science/International Relations from Columbia University in New York.

    From 1969 through 1983, Mr. Gambari held a variety of teaching posts, beginning at the City University of New York, then at the State University of New York in Albany, and later at Ahmadu Bello University in Zaria, Nigeria. He was Chairman of the Department of Political Science at the University in Zaria where he founded the first undergraduate Programme in International Studies in Nigeria. He was a Visiting Professor at Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies, Georgetown University and Howard University (1986-1989).

    Mr. Gambari was also a Research Fellow at the Brookings Institution, Washington, D.C., and a Resident Scholar with the Rockefeller Foundation Center in Italy. He has also authored several books and scholarly articles on international relations and foreign policy.

    In recognition of a distinguished career as a scholar-diplomat, the University of Bridgeport (USA) awarded Mr. Gambari the Doctor of Humane Letters degree (honoris causa - 2002); the prestigious Johns Hopkins University elected him to membership of the University's Society of Scholars (2002); and the Government of Nigeria awarded him the national honour, Commander of the Federal Republic (CFR).

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