• Thabo Mvuyelwa Mbeki
  • Denis Sassou-Nguesso
  • Kofi Atta Annan
  • Omer Hassan Ahmed el Beshir
  • Joseph Kabila
  • Mwai Emilio Stanley Kibaki
  • John Agyekum Kufuor (John Kufuor)
  • Mr Jacob Gedleyihlekisa Zuma (Msholozi)
  • Nkosazana Clarice Dlamini-Zuma
  • Ernest Bai Koroma
  • Abdul Serry-Kamal
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  • Charles Nqakula
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  • Abdoulaye Bio Tchané
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  • Lou Jiwei
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  • Syed Mokhtar Al-Bukhary
  • Ahmed Aboul Gheit
  • H.E. Xu Jinghu
  • RENÉ N’GUETTIA KOUASSI
  • Rajiv Sawhney
  • Mike Adenuga
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  • David William Donald Cameron
  • Nicholas William Peter Clegg ("Nick")
  • Wang Min
  • Andrew Mitchell
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  • Li Changchun
  • Sanjay Kirloskar
  • Madické Niang
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  • Tarah Shaanika
  • Wang Tianpu
  • Jen-Chih Huang ('Robert' )
  • Franky Oesman Widjaja
  • Salva Kiir Mayardit
  • Liu Zhiming
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  • Takeaki Matsumoto
  • Christina Tan
  • Chung Joon-yang
  • Makiko Kikuta
  • Park Young-june
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  • Xi Jinping
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  • Ali Ben Bongo Ondimba
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  • Seiji Maehara
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  • Felix Mutati
  • Chun Seung-hun
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  • Liu Yuhe
  • Lee Yi Shyan
  • Mswati III
  • Liu Zhenmin
  • Vasile Frank Timis (Frank)
  • Manoj Kohli
  • Wang Jin-pyng
  • Hamidon Ali
  • Wang Gang
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  • Naruhito
  • Donald Kaberuka
  • Anil Agarwal
  • Kim Hyong-o
  • Evariste Boshab
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  • Shin Kak-soo
  • Li Qiangmin
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  • Song Sang-hyun
  • Stanley Ho
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  • Chen Yuan
  • Justin Yifu Lin
  • Lee Won-gul
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  • Suppiah Dhanabalan
  • Mahmoud Mohieldin
  • Shashi Tharoor
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  • Fatou Bensouda
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  • Jonathan Nathaniel Moyo
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  • Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela (Madiba)
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  • Billy Rautenbach (Muller Conrad Rautenbach)
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  • Oumar Tatam Ly
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  • Walter Chidhakwa
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  • Raymond Zéphirin Mboulou
  • Lambert Mende (Lambert Mende Omalanga)
  • Julius Sello Malema
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  • Alberto Vaquina
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  • Mohamed Brahmi
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  • Joyce Hilda Banda
  • Usama bin Mohammed bin Awad bin Laden (Osama)
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  • Alberto Chipande
  • Afonso Marceta Macacho Dhlakama
  • Gideon Gono
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  • Ralph Kasambara
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  • Dr Siyabonga Cyprian Cwele
  • Sheryl Cwele
  • President Alpha Condé
  • Lansana Conté Conté
  • Field Marshal Abdel Fatah Khalil el Sisi
  • Rose Kabuye (Kanyange)
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  • Amama Mbabazi (Patrick Amama)
  • Lieutenant General Ian Khama (Seretse Khama Ian Khama)
  • Farai Rwodzi
  • Wynter Kabimba
  • Wynter Kabimba
  • Michael Chilufya Sata
  • Rupiah Bwezani Banda
  • Dr Guy Scott
  • General Julius Waweru Karangi
  • Laurent Fabius
  • Graça Machel
  • Riaz Mo Shaik
  • Thabo Mvuyelwa Mbeki
    Education: Bachelor of Economics, University of London, 1962; Master of Economics, Sussex University, UK, 1966. Career: Joined the African National Congress (ANC) Youth League, 1956; Secretary, African Students Association, 1961-62; held various posititions in the ANC, 1967-70; Assistant Secretary, ANC Revolutionary Council, 1971-73; ANC Representative to Botswana, 1973-74; ANC Representative to Swaziland, 1975; ANC Representative to Nigeria, 1975-78; Political Secretary, Office of the ANC President, Zambia, 1978-84; Secretary for Presidential Affairs, 1985-89; Department Head, International Affairs, ANC, 1989-94; National Chairman, ANC, 1993-97; Deputy President, Republic of South Africa, 1994-99; President of the ANC, 1997-2008; President of the Republic of South Africa, 1999-2008; Chairman of the African Union, 2002-03.
    Thabo Mvuyelwa Mbeki

    Denis Sassou-Nguesso
    Career: Joined the Congolese Army, 1960; Military Training in Central Africa, Algeria and France, 1961-68; Chief of Congolese airborne troops, 1968; Member of the Congolese Labour Party (PCT), 1970; Minister of Defence, 1975; Acting Head of State, March-April 1977; President of the PCT and Head of State, 1979-1992; President of the Republic of Congo-Brazzaville, 1997 to date. Commentary: A military man, an M'Bochi from Edu in the north, where he has a 'mystical headquarters' in his mother's village of Oyo in the Cuvette district, Sassou-Nguesso took refuge in Paris from persecution from Pascal Lissouba's militia in 1994.He returned to Congo in 1997. In the 2009 presidential elections he was re-elected for a further seven-year presidential term by a crushing majority, according to the official count. These elections were regarded with scepticism, the European Union did not bother to send election monitors because so little had been done to rectify flaws evident in the 2002 election. The EU representative in Brazzaville, Miguel Amado, pointed out that the official electoral register of 2.2 million people was implausibly high for a country containing only 3.8 mn. people, a high proportion of them youngsters.
    Denis Sassou-Nguesso

    Kofi Atta Annan
    Married with three children Education: BA Economics, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi, (final year, Macalester College, Minnesota, United States), 1958-61; MA International Relations, Institut de Hautes Etudes Internationales et du Développement, Geneva, Switzerland, 1961-62; MSc Management, MIT Sloan School of Management, Massachusetts, USA, 1971-72. Career: Administrative & Budget Officer and various positions, World Health Organization, Geneva, Switzerland, 1962-74; Director of Tourism, Ministry of Tourism & Diasporean Relations, Ghana, 1974-76; Assistant Secretary General, Human Resources Management & Security Coordinator, 1987-90; Assistant Secretary General, Programme Planning Budget & Finance, 1990-92; Assistant Secretary General, Peacekeeping Operations, 1993-94; Under-Secretary General, Office of the Under-Secretary General, 1994-95; Special Representative of the Secretary General to the former Yugoslavia, Office of the Secretary General, 1995-96; Under-Secretary General, 1996; United Nations Secretary General, 1997-2007: United Nations; Chancellor of the University of Ghana, 2007 to date.
    Kofi Atta Annan

    Omer Hassan Ahmed el Beshir
    Married to Fatima Khalid and, second wife, Widad Babiker Omer. No children Education: Graduated as an officer from the Sudan Military College, Khartoum, 1966. Career: Joined the Sudanese Armed Forces, 1960; Military attaché, UAE, 1975-79; Garrison Commander, Khartoum, 1979-81; Commander of the armoured parachute brigade, Khartoum, 1981-87; Commander of the 8th Brigade, 1988; Minister of Defence, 1989-93; President of Sudan, 1993 to date. Commentary: In 1989 led a military coup, overthrowing Prime Minister Sadiq al-Madhi in June 1989. He went on to pass the Criminal Act, introducing Sharia in all provinces except the South in 1991. He was indicted by the ICC on five counts of crimes against humanity and two counts of war crimes in March 2009.
    Omer Hassan Ahmed el Beshir

    Joseph Kabila

    Joseph Kabila

    Mwai Emilio Stanley Kibaki
    Commentary: A veteran of Kenyan politics, first becoming a member of parliament in 1963, Mwai Kibaki was originally a stalwart of the Kenya African National Union (KANU). He served under President Jomo Kenyatta as Finance Minister and when Daniel arap Moi took over after Kenyatta's death in 1978, he rose to the position of Vice-President. He continued to manage the finance portfolio until he exchanged it for a role in the Ministry of Home Affairs and National Heritage. A dispute with Moi resulted in his demotion from the Vice-Presidency in 1988 and consequent transfer to the Ministry of Health. This fall from favour was followed in 1991, by the repeal of Section 2A of the Kenyan constitution at Kasarani. Kibaki seized this opportunity for the recognition of opposing political parties and left KANU to form the Democratic Party (DP) on the 25 December 1991. On the DP ticket Kibaki ran for President in two succesive elections in 1992 and 1997, but only managed to come third and then second. It was not until 2002 that Kibaki's presidential desires were realised. On this occasion he prepared for the election by merging the DP with 13 smaller parties, creating the National Alliance Party of Kenya (NAK), which in turn conjoined with the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) to form an umbrella coalition party, the National Rainbow Coalition (NARC). Kibaki won a landslide victory and was sworn in on 30 December 2002, claiming the presidency at his third attempt. Kibaki's first term was marred by the heated consitutional debates that raged over presidential powers. When a referendum in November 2005 rejected a draft constitution, supported by Kibaki, he took the dramatic step of dismissing his entire cabinet along with all the deputy ministers that he could constitutionally remove and replacing them with his supporters. The issue of presidential power returned to haunt Kibaki in the controversial 2007 elections. His presidential ticket was endorsed by a new alliance called the Party of National Unity (PNU) which was made up of a number of parties, including KANU, the DP and NARC Kenya. The Electoral Commission declared Kibaki the victor on 30 December 2007, however, Raila Odinga, Kibaki's closest rival, refused to accept this result, raising allegations of fraud that were supported to a strong degree by popular opinion. Riots followed Kibaki's re-election. Unrest continued until a power sharing deal was reached that gave Odinga the newly created post of Prime Minister. After the March 2013 elections, Kibaki handed over the presidency to his successor, Uhuru Kenyatta, on 9 April 2013, and his term in office came to an end.
    Mwai Emilio Stanley Kibaki

    John Agyekum Kufuor (John Kufuor)
    Married to Theresa Kufuor, five children Education: Prempeh College, Ghana, 1954-58; Lincoln’s Inn, London, United Kingdom, 1959-61; MA in Philosophy, Politics and Economics, Exeter College, University of Oxford, UK, 1964. Career: Chief Legal Officer and Town Clerk, Kumasi Metropolitan Assembly, Ghana, 1967-68; Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Progress Party, 1969-72; Spokesman on Foreign Affairs and Deputy Opposition, Popular Front Party, 1979-82; Secretary for Local Government, the Provisional National Defence Council (PNDC), Government of Ghana, 1982; New Patriotic Party (NPP) Party Leader, 1996-2000; President of Ghana, 2001-07; Chairman, African Union, 2007-08. Commentary: When Kufuor became President in 2001, he brought to an end the 18-year tenure of Former President Jerry Rawlings. During his time in office, he was praised for his efforts to build the country's economy. In 2006, for example, he negotiated a five-year US$547 million grant from the United States Millennium Challenge Corporation to combat poverty. When the new National Democratic Congress (NDC) government came into office in 2009, it discovered that the country was deeper in debt than previously thought, raising questions about the Kufuor administration's accountability. Allegations of corrupt oil deals between Texas-based Kosmos Energy and Ghanaian energy company, EO Group, implicated EO's founders and two of Kufuor's political allies, George Owusu and Kwame Bawuah Edusei.
    John Agyekum Kufuor (John Kufuor)

    Mr Jacob Gedleyihlekisa Zuma (Msholozi)
    Career: Chief Representative, ANC (the year of the signing of the Nkomati Accord between the Mozambican and South African governments), Mozambique, 1984; Deputy Secretary-General, ANC, 1991-94; Member, Executive Council, Economic Affairs and Tourism, KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) Provincial Government, 1994-99; National Chairman, ANC Council, 1995-97; Leader, Government Business in the National Assembly, 1997-2005; Deputy President, ANC, 1997-2000; MP, ANC: National Assembly, 1999-2005; Deputy President, 1999-2005; President, ANC, 1997 to date; President, South Africa, 2009 to date. Commentary: A veteran of public scandal, he has had to make three public apologies to date, but reports of Zuma's political demise are exaggerated. ANC insiders have briefed jounalists that Zuma's promiscuity was a liability and have put pressure on him to apologise for his latest aberration, fathering another child out of wedlock with the daughter of football mogul Irvin Khoza, came from some of his most senior allies, KZN Premier Zweli Mkhize, leader of the Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu) Zwelinzima Vavi and South African Communist Party (SACP) Secretary General Blade Nzimande. However, despite murmurs of disapproval from the public and within the ANC, Zuma’s approval ratings appear not to have dipped much since polls late last year. A TNS survey conducted in the week of his parliamentary address showed that his popularity hinged on service delivery rather than his sex life. The survey, conducted among a sample of 2,000 adults in seven cities, showed Zuma’s approval level rose from 40% at the beginning of 2009 to 58% last November.
    Mr Jacob Gedleyihlekisa Zuma (Msholozi)

    Nkosazana Clarice Dlamini-Zuma
    Career: Research Technician, University of Natal Durban Westville Medical School, 1971-72; Vice-President, South African Students Organisation, 1976; Chairperson, African National Congress (ANC) Youth Section, UK, 1977-78; House Officer, Frenchay Hospital, Bristol, UK, 1978-79; Vice Chairperson, ANC Regional Political Committee, UK, 1978-79; Vice-Chairperson, Canadian Red Cross Memorial Hospital, Berkshire, UK, 1979-80; Medical Officer, Mbabane Government Hospital, Swaziland, 1980-85; Paediatrician, Whittington Hospital, UK, 1987-89; Director, Health Refugee Trust, Health and Development Organisation, UK, 1988-90; Chairperson, ANC Regional Political Committee, UK, 1988-89; House Officer, ANC Health Department, Zambia, 1989-90; Research Scientist, Medical Research Council, Durban, 1991-94; Minister of Health, 1994-99; Deputy Chair, United Nations AIDS Board, 1995; Chancellor, ML Sultan Technikon, 1996; Minister of Foreign Affairs, 1999-2009; Minister of Home Affairs, 2009-12 Chairperson of the African Union Commission 2012 to date. Commentary: Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, the ex-wife of Jacob Zuma, is ambitious and has achieved political prominence. As Minister of Health and of Foreign Affairs showed herself to be hard-working, perceptive and competent. She challenged the patent rights of international pharmaceutical companies, opening the way for widespread distribution of generic anti-retrovirals. As foreign minister she skilfully defined and defended South African interests, though her strong public support for Zimbabwe's ruling party dismayed many. Yet she is charisma-free and was obdurate when she had clearly erred. In 1995 she refused to admit poor judgement in sanctioning the spending of 14 million rand (US$1.9 mn.) of the Health Department's budget on a musical show intended to combat AIDS. In 1997 she championed, without subsequent public regret, an experimental anti-AIDS drug called Virodene, made of industrial solvent and with no anti-retroviral impact. She was originally Mbeki's first choice as his successor. Mbeki flagged her candidacy a month after he began his presidency in 1999, having appointed Jacob Zuma as his deputy. Until 14 June 2005 - when he fired Zuma, Mbeki still believed he could lift Dlamini-Zuma into the presidency. However, ANC supporters and leaders found the stern often abrasive medical doctor unsuitable for campaigning. An implacable foe, Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, threatened to run a grassroots movement against her, using as a base the ANC Women's League until, at the 1997 ANC national conference, Dlamini-Zuma helped Mbeki to break Madikizela-Mandela's grip on the Women's League. Grassroots resistance and her ex-husband's problems finally prompted Dlamini-Zuma to withdraw. The relationship began to sour because Zuma felt affronted by Mbeki's open grooming of his estranged wife for the presidency. A week before Christmas 2005, she formally told Mbeki she wasn't interested in the top post. We hear Mbeki advised her to issue a public statement and she did so on 22 December.
    Nkosazana Clarice Dlamini-Zuma

    Ernest Bai Koroma
    Married to Sia Nyama, with two children. Education: Fourah Bay College, BSc Economics, University of Sierra Leone, Sierra Leone, 1976. Career: Teacher, St. Francis Secondary School, Makeni, 1976-78; Officer, Sierra Leone National Insurance Company, 1978-85; Officer, 1985-88, Managing Director, 1988-2002: Reliance Insurance Trust Corporation; Presidental Candidate, All People’s Congress, 2002; President of Sierra Leone, 2007 to date.
    Ernest Bai Koroma

    Abdul Serry-Kamal
    Education: BA History, University of Wisconsin, USA. Career: Managing member and co-founder of JSK Investment Solutions; Minister of Justice and Attorney General, 2007-10. Commentary: Abdul Serry-Kamal, is often described as a ruthless operator whom Ernest Bai Koroma has to keep on side for party unity. Back in 2007 Serry-Kamal initially stood behind former APC leader Eddie Turay to run for president but eventually backed Koroma. Given this, his appointment as the Minister of Justice and Attorney General, was heavily criticised. In a cabinet reshuffle in December 2010 Serry-Kamal lost his ministerial position to Frank Kargbo who was previously the party's deputy secretary general.
    Abdul Serry-Kamal

    Dr Abubakar Jalloh (Alhaji Abubakaar Jalloh)
    Education: Methodists Boys’ High School; Prince of Wales; BA Mathematics and Physics, Fourah Bay College, University of Sierra Leone; MSc Geophysics, Imperial College, London, United Kingdom; MSc Atmospheric physics and Hydrogeology, University College, London, UK. Career: External Examiner, West African Examination Council; Director of Land Resources survey, Minister of Agriculture; Exploration Geophysicist and Geologist, Company Secretary, Executive Director: National Diamond Mining Company; Lecturer of Mathematical and Physical Science, University of the District of Columbia, USA, 1992-2005; Chair of Mathematics and Sciences Department, Sojourner Douglas College, Maryland, USA, 1991-2001; Minister of Mines and Mineral Resources, Republic of Sierra Leone, 2007-09; High Commissioner, Sierra Leone.
    Dr Abubakar Jalloh (Alhaji Abubakaar Jalloh)

    Seif el Islam el Gadaffi
    Commentary: Seif el Islam el Gadaffi is Colonel Moammar el Gadaffi's eldest son from his second marriage to Safiya Farkash el Barassi, Seif el Islam (Sword of Islam) has become the standard bearer of reform, styling himself the spokesman for Libyan youth. Observers say he is genuinely committed to liberalising human rights although, along with his siblings, he personifies the future of his family's rule over the Jamahiriya. In July 2002, he made a televised speech in which he said the regime needed to admit to the unlawful killing of dissidents in the past. Like many other of his projects, this initiative named the Gadaffi Call has not advanced. Seif has no formal role in the Jamahiriya. The Gadaffi International Charity and Development Organisation acts as a kind of safety valve for the human rights abuses committed by his father's regime.
    Seif el Islam el Gadaffi

    Charles McArthur Ghankay Taylor
    Education: Economics, Bentley College, Waltham, Massachusetts, 1977. Career: National Chairman, Union of Liberian Associations; Director of Government Purchasing, 1980-83; Head of the National Patriotic Front of Liberia, 1989; President of Liberia, 1997-2003. Commentary: Following his arrest in 2006, Charles Taylor has quickly become a pariah in Sub-Saharan Africa. Indicted by the Sierra Leonean Special Courts, his trial is taking place in the Hague rather than in Freetown because of the risk of political destabilization in Sierra Leone and since no West African country wanted to take him in. He is charged with committing war crimes, crimes against humanity and violations of international humanitarian law. His trial marks the first time that an African ruler, forced from power by a combination of diplomacy and military pressure, has faced an internationally recognised court.
    Charles McArthur Ghankay Taylor

    Dr Paul Amoako Acquah
    Education: BSc Economics, University of Ghana, Legon; Masters Degree, Yale University, United States; PhD, University of Pennsylvania, USA. Career: Economist, 1976-98; Deputy Director, International Monetary Fund (IMF), Washington DC, US, 1998-2001; Governor, Bank of Ghana, 2001-09.
    Dr Paul Amoako Acquah

    General Laurent Nkunda (Laurent Nkundabatware or Laurent Nkunda Batware)
    Education: BA Psychology, Kisangani University. Career: Front National Patriotique Rwandais (RPF), Rwanda, 1993-94; Alliance des forces démocratiques pour la libération du Congo (AFDL), Congo-Kinshasa; Officer, Ressemblement Congolais pour la Démocratie-Goma (RCD-Goma), 1998-2002; Congolese Army, 2003-04; Leader, Congrès National pour la Défense du Peuple (CNDP), 2006-09. Commentary: Laurent Nkunda is a Congolese Tutsi born in 1967 in the Nord Kivu province of east Congo-Kinshasa. He started his military career in the RPF in 1993, which stopped the genocide in Rwanda in July 1994 perpetrated by the Hutu government in Kigali. After the victory in Rwanda, Nkunda returned to Congo-Kinshasa, joining the rebellion of Alliance des forces démocratiques pour la libération du Congo (AFDL) led by Laurent-Désiré Kabila (the father of the current president of Congo, Joseph Kabila). The AFDL dismissed Mobutu Sese Seko in 1997. In 1998 Nkunda became an officer of Ressemblement Congolais pour la Démocratie-Goma (RCD-Goma) in the context of the Second Congo War. At the end of the war with the peace of Luanda signed 6 of September 2002 and following the formation of a transitional government, Nkunda joined the new Congolese army with the rank of general. However he rejected the authority of the new government and withdrew to the east province of Kivu with soldiers of the ex RCD-Goma, starting the Kivu War. He formed the political party Congrès National pour la Défense du Peuple (CNDP) in 2006 but lost his position when he was arrested in Rwanda in 2009, his arrest also marked the end of the Kivu War.
    General Laurent Nkunda (Laurent Nkundabatware or Laurent Nkunda Batware)

    Charles Nqakula
    Biography: Journalist, Midland News, Cradock, 1966; Political Reporter, Imvo Zabantsundu, King Williamstown, 1973; Journalist, Daily Dispatch, 1976-81; Founder, Veritas News Agency, Zwelitsha, 1982; Publicity Secretary, United Democratic Front, 1983; Deputy General-Secretary, South African Communist Party, 1993-99; Parliamentary Councillor, Office of the President, 1999-01; Deputy Minister, Ministry of Home Affairs, 2001-02; Minister of Safety and Security, 2002-08; Minister of Defence, 2008-09; Political Advisor to the Presidency, 2009 to date. Commentary: Charles Nqakula was the chair of the South African Communist Party and a commander of Umkhonto we Sizwe, the armed wing of the African National Congress during the apartheid era. He came into government in 2001, he did not impress in his demanding and time-consuming job. He was a close ally of Thabo Mbeki. More recently, he has felt side-lined by Zuma, and it is thought that he could be on his way out.
    Charles Nqakula

    Mr Tokyo Gabriel Sexwale (Mosima)
    Biography: Head, ANC Military HQ, 1990-91; Ex-Officio Member, ANC National Executive Committee, 1991-97; Chair, ANC Gauteng Region, 1991-97; Premier, Gauteng Prov Government, 1994-98; Head, Special Projects, African National Congress (ANC) Headquarters, 1994; Head, Public Liaison Department, ANC HQ, 1994; Non-Executive Director, ABSA Bank and Group, 2001-08; Executive Chair, Mvelaphanda Holdings, 2002-07; Non-Executive Chair, Mvelaphanda Holdings, 2007 to date; Minister of Human Settlements, 2009 to date. Commentary: One of Zuma's inner circle and a major power in the ANC. Sexwale is a multi-millionaire and a political big-spender and, with Zuma, was one of those who ran in 2007. He shifted towards Zuma in December of 2007, his advisors reckoned that if he, perhaps temporarily, deferred to Zuma, he may yet secure the national presidency. Now Human Settlements Minister, Sexwale remains very ambitious and he also remains a serious competitor for the ANC presidency.
    Mr Tokyo Gabriel Sexwale (Mosima)

    Abdoulaye Bio Tchané
    Career: Vice Governor, Banque Centrale des Etats de l'Afrique de L'Ouest (BCEAO), 1992-1996; Director, BCEAO, 1996-1998; Minister of Finance, Benin, 1998-2002; Head of Africa Department, IMF, 2002-2007; President, West African Development Bank, 2008 to date.
    Abdoulaye Bio Tchané

    Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf (The Iron Lady)
    Education: Economics, College of West Africa, Monrovia, 1948-55; Accounting, University of Wisconsin-Madison, United States, 1961-64; Master of Public Administration, Harvard University, USA, 1969-71. Career: Assistant Minister of Finance, 1972-73; Minister of Finance in the government of President William Tolbert, 1979-1980;Director, CitiBank, Nairobi, Kenya 1983-85; Director, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Regional Bureau for Africa, Washington DC, 1992-97; President of Liberia, 2005 to date. Commentary:Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf beat her rival, ex-soccer star George Manneh Weah, with a 20 percent margin of more than 150,000 votes in the presidential elections on 8 November 2005 after running in 1985 and 1997. Known as the 'Iron Lady', Johnson-Sirleaf is often compared to the United Kingdom's former Premier Margaret Thatcher. Her career in financial institutions has earned her many Western friends and her appearance at the funeral in October 2005 of Nigeria's First Lady, Stella Obasanjo, won her a private audience with President Olusegun Obasanjo. Johnson-Sirleaf has bridged the gap between Congo, the Americo-Liberians, descended from freed slaves, and the indigenous Liberians who make up most of the population.
    Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf (The Iron Lady)

    Omar Bongo Ondimba (Le Grand Camarade)
    Career: Vice President of Gabon, 1967; President of Gabon, 1967-2009. Commentary: Born Albert Bernard Bongo in 1935, President El Hadj Omar Bongo Ondimba was Africa's longest-serving leader and was from the Bateke people of south-east Gabon. The Bateke span the border between Gabon and Congo-Kinshasa, and his opponents claimed that he was Congolese. Gabon's first President, Leon Mba, chose him to be his Vice-President when Bongo was 32-years-old and after Mba's death in 1967, Bongo succeeded him as President. In 1973, he converted to Islam, and in 2003 he took his father's name, Ondimba. He ruled Gabon for over 40 years until his death on 8 June 2009 after a heart attack. He was in Barcelona at the time, where he was being treated for intestinal cancer. His death complicates the ruling family's life. His accounts in Paris are still frozen, due to the Cardona case and questions linger about millions of euros found in his late wife's Monaco account. He is rumoured to have more than 30 children but his son Ali Ben Bongo and daughter Pascaline are the most well known to the public.
    Omar Bongo Ondimba (Le Grand Camarade)

    General Solomon Mujuru (Rex Nhongo)
    Career: Zimbabwe African People’s Revolutionary Army (ZIPRA), 1960s; Zimbabwe National Liberation Army (ZANLA), 1971; acting commander-in-chief of ZANLA, 1975; Joint leader of Zimbabwe People’ Army (ZIPA) a united force of ZIPRA and ZANLA, 1976; Deputy Secretary of Defence for Zimbabwe African National Union (ZANU), 1977; Commander, Zimbabwe National Army, 1981; promoted to full General 1992; Member of Parliament for Chikomba, 1994-2000.
    General Solomon Mujuru (Rex Nhongo)

    Dr. Sydney Tigere Sekeramayi
    Education: Genetics, Czechoslovakia; Studied Medicine, University of Lund, Sweden, 1964-. Career: Secretary for Scandinavian Affairs, Zimbabwe African National Union (ZANU), 1966; General Secretary, Zimbabwe Students Union in Europe, 1967-1968; President, Zimbabwe Students Union in Europe, 1971; Official ZANU representative in Scandinavia, 1971; Department of Surgery, Teaching Hospital of the University of Zambia, 1975; Surgeon, UK, 1976; Joined the ZANU medical team, Mozambique, 1977; Deputy Secretary for Health, Zimbabwe, 1977; Member of Parliament, Mashonaland Central, 1980; Minister of Lands, Resettlement and Rural Development, 1980-81; Minister of State for Defence, 1982-84; Minister of Health, 1984-88; Minister of State for National Security, 1988-2000; Minister of Mines, 2000-01 Minister of Defence, 2001-09; Minister of State Security, 2009 to date. Commentary: Solomon Mujuru, an ethnic Shona-Zezuru, was one of the first students to be sponsored by the Nationalist Movement to study abroad, Sekeramayi has been a loyal member of the party since the 1960s and has held high profile posts in government. A medical doctor and a very reserved person, Sekeramayi was at one time one of the leading contenders to succeed President Robert Mugabe. This was when the exclusive club, the Committee of 26 comprising mainly Zezuru and Korekore, was still strong and wanted to shut out the Karanga- Eddison Zvobgo and Emmerson Mnangagwa - from taking over the party leadership. Sekeramayi has, however, never displayed any presidential ambitions which is probably why Mugabe trusts him as security minister. His star began to fade when Solomon Mujuru, who was spearheading the Committee of 26, decided to back his own wife, Joyce, with Simba Makoni as an alternative. Though out of presidential contention, Sekeremayi has remained one of Mugabe’s trusted ministers and cannot be written off. He still plays a crucial role in deciding who succeeds Mugabe.
    Dr. Sydney Tigere Sekeramayi

    Didymus Noel Edwin Mutasa
    Education: Goromonzi Govrnment Secondary School, 1950-56; BA, Social Sciences, Birmingham University, United Kingdom. Career: Member, African National Congress, 1957; Member, ZANU, 1963; imprisoned, 1970-72; Deputy Secretary for Finance, ZANU, 1976; Speaker of the House of Assembly, 1980; MP, Makoni North, 2000; Minister of State for Anti-Corruption and the Anti-Monopolies Programme, 2004-05; Minister of State for National Security, Lands, Land Reform and Resettlement in the President's Office, 2005-08; Minister of State for Presidential Affairs, 2008 to date. Commentary: A controversial figure Mutasa was imprisoned for two years between 1970 and 1972 the spent a further four years in exile in the UK. As one of Mugabe's oldest and most stalwart supporters, he has implied that Mugabe should be made President-for-life officially, though this would only confirm what people have suspected for some time. Some think Didymus Mutasa's star has faded since he lost in the Praesidium election at the ZANU-PF party congress in December 2010 and Mohadi couldn't be bothered to lend a hand. Theresa Makone's support for Mutasa outraged some MDC .
    Didymus Noel Edwin Mutasa

    Mr Dumiso Dabengwa
    Commentary: Dumiso Dabengwa, the former head of intelligence for the Zimbabwe People’s Revolutionary Army and a member of the Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front Politburo, emerged at a congress last month as interim Chairman of the Patriotic Front, which draws its support from the southern provinces of Matebeleland. Dabengwa remains a popular figure partly because of his credentials from the liberation struggle and his criticism of the regime’s 1983-85 Gukuruhundi massacres in Matebeleland. He was subsequently detained. Dumiso Dabengwa's public defection from the Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front (ZANU-PF) in February 2008 was a serious blow to the party. Dabengwa had been getting progressively more disenchanted with ZANU-PF and President Robert Mugabe’s rule, sometimes taking him on head-to-head at stormy Politburo meetings. Now Dabengwa and the Patriotic Front (PF) say they have dissolved the Unity Accord and demand the return of PF property that is in the hands of ZANU-PF. The PF is scheduled to hold another congress to elect a new leadership; Dabengwa claims he will not stand. Meanwhile, with Cyril Ndebele, Dabengwa heads a Council of Elders to guide the transition. The new PF is expected to call for a federal constitution with substantial powers for the regions when the drafting of a new constitution begins. We hear that Vice-President Joseph Msika is not unsympathetic to these moves.
    Mr Dumiso Dabengwa

    Mr Joshua Mgabuko Nyongolo Nkomo
    Career: Social Worker, Rhodesia Railways (later National Railways of Zimbabwe), 1947; Secretary-General, Railway African Workers Union, 1951; President, African National Congress, 1952 and 1957; President of National Democratic Party, 1960; President of the Zimbabwe African People’s Union (ZAPU), 1961-87; Formed Patriotic Front with Robert Mugabe, 1976; Commander of both military and political wings of ZAPU, 1977; Member of Parliament for the Midlands, 1980-1985; Minister of Home Affairs, 1980; Minister without Portfolio,1981; Member of Parliament for Magwegwe, 1985-1990; Senior Minister for development ministries,1988; Vice-President of Zimbabwe, 1990-1999. Commentary: Joshua Nkomo died in 1999 but he is still a force to be reckoned with in Zimbabwean politics. Nkomo is regarded as the founder of African nationalism in Zimbabwe and led all the political parties formed between1952 and 1962, only losing favour with his lieutenants in 1963 when they broke away from ZAPU to form the Zimbabwe African National Union (ZANU). Though ZANU became more popular than ZAPU, largely because of its support from the majority Shona, who constitute more than 80 percent of the population, Nkomo remained a paternal figure in the country and was popularly known as Father Zimbabwe. He was detained at Gonakudzingwa, Gweru and Buffalo Range between 1964-74. Nkomo went into business quite early in the 1950s and he was initally more interested in the economy than just politics. This led him to seek solutions with Ian Smith, resulting in some of his colleagues in the liberation struggle to accuse him of being a sell-out. It was only after 1977, when he concentrated on the liberation struggle, that be regained his political weight. Though he had formed the Patriotic Front with Mugabe, Mugabe decided to go it alone in the 1980 independence elections. The results spelt doom for Nkomo. Mugabe walked away with 57 of the 80 blackseats. Nkomo won 20. Mugabe tried to make Nkomo the ceremonial President of the country but he turned this down because he felt he would sink into political oblivion. He opted instead to become Minister of Home Affairs. However, Mugabe did not want any opposition. Trouble started within two years, after the discovery of arms caches at farms owned by Nkomo’s party, ZAPU. Mugabe embarked on a five-year purge using his special Five Brigade which left thousands of innocent civilians dead as they hunted down“dissidents” who were allegedly loyal to Nkomo. The persecution of ZAPU leaders and Ndebele speaking people in Matabeleland and the Midlands forced Nkomo to the negotiating table culminating in the unity accord between ZAPU and ZANU-PF in 1987. Most people regarded the agreement as the capitulation of Nkomo but he remained in government for another 12 years. Though he was accused by some Ndebele people and hardliners from ZAPU as having sold out, Nkomo, like Tsvangirai 11 years later, signed the unity agreement to save his own people and end the bloodshed. Today, some people argue that Zimbabweans grossly under-estimated the influence Nkomo had over Mugabe. They argue that Zimbabwe would not have collapsed the way it did, just one year after Nkomo’s death, had he been alive because he would have told Mugabe to stop farm invasions and other human rights abuses. That might all be speculation now, but the fact remains that Nkomo’s name will remain etched in the country’s history. He will forever be remembered as Father Zimbabwe, Umdhala Wethu (the Nation’s grand old man).
    Mr Joshua Mgabuko Nyongolo Nkomo

    Emmerson Dambudzo Mnangagwa
    Education: Military Training, China, 1963-; Bachelor of Law, University of Zambia; 1974; Career: Recruited into the Zimbabwe African People’s Union (ZAPU) by Willie Musarurwa, 1962; Special Assitant for Security, Office of the President, Zimbabwe, 1977; Minister of State for Security 1980-1988; Minister of Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs, 1989-2000; acting Minister of Finance, 1995-96; Speaker of Parliament, 2000-2005; Minister of Rural Housing and Amenities, 2005-2008; Minister of Defence 2009 to 2013.
    Emmerson Dambudzo Mnangagwa

    Mr Christopher William Dell
    Education: BA Political Science, Columbia College, Columbia University; 19-74-78; MPhil International Relations, Balliol College, Oxford University, United Kingdom, 1978-80. He is fluent in Spanish, Portuguese, and Bulgarian. Career: Vice Consul, US Consulate Matamoros, Mexico, 1981-83; Vice Consul, US Consulate Oporto, Portugal, 1983-84; Political Officer, US Embassy Lisbon, Portugal, 1984-85; Staff Assistant, Bureau of Political-Military Affairs, 1985-86; Desk Officer for Spain and Portugal, Bureau of European and Canadian Affairs, 1986-87; Executive Assistant to the Special Negotiator for Greek Bases Agreement, Bureau of European and Canadian Affairs, 1987-89; Special Assistant to the Under Secretary for International Security Affairs, 1989-91; Deputy Chief of Mission, US Embassy, Maputo, Mozambique, 1991-94; Deputy Director, Office of Regional Political Affairs, Bureau of European and Canadian Affairs, 1994-96; Deputy Chief of Mission, U.S. Embassy Sofia, Bulgaria, 1997-00; Chief of Mission, US Office, Pristina, Kosovo, 2000-01; US Ambassador to Angola, 2001-04; US Ambassador to Zimbabwe, 2004-07; Deputy Chief of Mission, Afghanistan, 2007-09; US Ambassador to Kosovo, 2009-11.
    Mr Christopher William Dell

    Morgan Richard Tsvangirai
    Ethnicity: Shona - Karanga Son of Chibwe Tsvangirai and Lydia Zvaipa Career: Factory Worker, Mutare Plastics and Tapes, 1972; Plant Operator rising to Supervisor, Trojan Nickel Mine, 1974-84; Chairman, Trojan Branch of Associated Mineworkers Union, 1980-83; Member, National Executive of Associated Mineworkers Union, 1983-85; Vice-President of Associated Mineworkers Union, 1985-88; Secretary-General of the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU), 1988-99; served as Secretary-General of Southern African Trade Unions Coordinating Council; President of Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), 1999-05; President of MDC-Tsvangirai, 2005 to date; Prime Minister of Zimbabwe, 2009 to date. Commentary: Morgan Tsvangirai has been a pain in the neck for Robert Mugabe since he became Secretary-General of the ZCTU in 1998 and withdrew the union from the grip of ZANU-PF. In the absence of a strong opposition party, following the merger of Mugabe’s ZANU-PF and Joshua Nkomo’s ZAPU in 1987, the labour movement was viewed as a political threat to the ruling party. There was even an assassination attempt on Tsvangirai in 1997 when a group of seven tried to throw him out of his 10th floor offices. Under pressure to create an alternative to ZANU-PF Tsvangirai led the ZCTU and other civic organisations to form the Movement for Democratic Change in 1999. He was also Chairman of the National Constitutional Assembly which led the campaign to vote against the proposed new constitution, drafted by Mugabe in February 2000, marking the first defeat Mugabe had suffered since taking power. The MDC nearly kicked ZANU-PF out of office in the June 2000 parliamentary elections when it won 57 out of the 120 elected seats in parliament Mugabe’s answer was to unleash unprecedented violence against MDC supporters. Tsvangirai was arrested and charged with treason but later acquitted. He challenged Mugabe in the presidential elections of 2002 and lost, but claimed the elections were rigged. There was a serious challenge to his leadership when his top lieutenants Welshman Ncube and Gibson Sibanda led a breakaway group that wanted to contest the 2005 senate elections, which Tsvangirai had said should be boycotted. The MDC had suffered a major loss in March 2005 when it won only 41 of the 120 contested seats. Ncube walked out with a majority of the Members of Parliament, virtually becoming the official opposition. Tsvangirai was forced to rebuild the party but Mugabe never shifted his eyes off Tsvangirai because he realised he had the support of the people and continued to harass and arrest him. Tsvangirai surprised everyone, including himself, when he won the presidential elections in March 2008 but his indecision on what to do next, gave Mugabe a chance to reassert himself, dispute the results and call for a re-run. Mugabe unleashed a wave of violence that saw Tsvangirai flee the country, thus giving Mugabe breathing space. When Tsvangirai pulled out of the re-run as a consequence of the violence inflicted on his supporters, Mugabe went ahead with the one-candidate election and was quickly sworn in. He could not, however, hold the country together and was forced to sign a power-sharing agreement with Tsvangirai on 15 September. Tsvangirai was sworn in on 11 February. Though he has been criticised for failing to confront Mugabe head-on after his election victory, he is steadily asserting his power. His long years in the labour movement where everything had to be agreed upon by consensus could be a major setback because at times he has to go with the decision of the majority when he might not personally agree with that decision. He has also demonstrated that he can withstand tremendous pressure. He has managed to contain his supporters, civic society and donors who still want vengeance against ZANU-PF. He has remained constant in his support for the inclusive government. He was not even swayed by the death of his wife on 6 March, four days before his 57th birthday, though there were cries of foul play. He has also managed to contain his Secretary-General, Tendai Biti, who seems to be still playing to the gallery. His biggest problem could come from Bulawayo where there are already two distinct factions, one supporting him and the other his deputy, Thokozani Khupe. The infighting could play into the hands of Dumiso Dabengwa, who has revived the ZAPU, which once dominated the city and the entire Matabeleland.
    Morgan Richard Tsvangirai

    Mr Arthur Guseni Oliver Mutambara
    Education: BSc Electric and Electronic Engineering, University of Zimbabwe; 1987-90; MSc Electrical Engineering/Computer Engineering; PhD Robotics and Mechatronics: Oxford University, UK, 1991-95. Career: Student leader and activist, University of Zimbabwe, 1987-90; assistant professor, Florida A&M University-Florida State University College of Engineering, United States of America,1996-97; Visiting research scientist, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), 1996-97; Visiting research scientist, Carnegie Mellon University, 1998; Associate professor, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1999-2001; Management Consultant, McKinsey and Company, 2001; Director Stanbic Bank, South Africa, 2002-03; CEO and Managing Director, African Technology and Business Institute, 2003-; President, Movement for Democratic Change, 2006 to date; Deputy Prime Minister of Zimbabwe, 2009 to date.
    Mr Arthur Guseni Oliver Mutambara

    Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula
    Biography: Youth Worker, Target Timothy 1981-82; Assistant Director, Masazane Open School, 1982-84; Activist, African National Congress (ANC), Political Military Structures, 1986-88; Representative, ANC Women's Section to Pan Africa Women's Organisation (PAWO), 1988-90; National Organiser, ANC Women's League, 1991-93; Secretary General, ANC Women's League, 1993-95; Deputy Minister, Home Affairs, 2002-04; Minister, Home Affairs, 2004-09; Minister of Correctional Services, 2009 to date. Commentary: Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula received some military training in Angola and the Soviet Union in the 1980s and was a member of political and military structures whilst in the Soviet Union. She is the wife of Charles Nqakula, former Minister of Defence and Political Advisor to the Presidency who was close to President Mbeki. Her ministerial performance in the Home Affairs department was unimpressive but she remains an upwardly mobile figure in the ANC.
    Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula

    Karim Meïssa Wade
    Karim Wade, is the son of Abdoulaye Wade, former President of Senegal. Between May 2009 and April 2012 he served as Minister of Energy, International Cooperation, Air Transport and Infrastructure.
    Karim Meïssa Wade

    Raila Amolo Odinga
    Commentary: Hailing from a strong political lineage, Raila is the son of Jaramogi Oginga Odinga who was Kenya's first post-Independence Vice-President. He is known by his first name Raila rather than Odinga because he was a member of Parliament at the same time as his father (1992-94) and is currently in the house with his brother, Oburu. Raila has been a recognised force in Kenyan politics since his alleged involvement in a failed coup attempt against President Daniel Arap Moi in 1982. His links to the coup saw him imprisoned for six years before being released in February 1988 – only to be arrested again in September 1988 for involvement with the Kenya Revolutionary Movement, which was pressing for multi-party democracy in Kenya. He fled to Norway in October 1991, following his allegations of attempted government assassinations, and only returned to Kenya in 1992 to join the Forum for the Restoration of Democracy (FORD). After FORD's split in the run up to the 1992 elections, Raila became the Deputy Director of FORD-Kenya, led by his father. At this time, he also won the Langata Constituency Parliamentary seat which he still holds. Raila left FORD-Kenya in 1996 to join the National Development Party, finishing third in the 1997 presidential elections. He then effected a merger between the NDP and Moi's Kenya African National Union (KANU) party. At this time, he also served as Energy Minister under Moi. After being passed over for the 2002 presidential ticket, Raila left KANU and formed the Rainbow movement, which took over the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) in late 2002. The coalition went on to join with the National Alliance of Kenya and eventually became the National Rainbow Coalition (NARC). Raila was a cabinet member under President Mwai Kibaki until November 2005, when the entire cabinet was sacked, with the whole of the LDP group excluded when it was reformed. Raila then formed the Orange Democratic Movement and was elected as their presidential candidate in 2007, campaigning against President Kibaki. After losing by a narrow margin, Raila and many election observers challenged the results and accused the Electoral Commission of Kenya of fraud. Two months of unrest ensued until a power-sharing deal was brokered between Raila and Kibaki. That led to the recreation of the post of Prime Minister, which had not existed in Kenya since 1964 when it was briefly held by Jomo Kenyatta, and Raila was sworn in as Premier on 17 April 2008. At the elections in March 2013, Raila again ran for President, leading the Coalition for Reform and Democracy (CORD) together with Vice-President Stephen Kalonzo Musyoka, but lost to Uhuru Kenyatta. Technological failures in the new electronic voting system put in place for the elections gave rise to suspicions of fraud and Raila challenged the result. However, on 31 March the Supreme Court upheld Kenyatta's victory and Raila and CORD – despite their doubts – agreed to respect the constitution and accept defeat.
    Raila Amolo Odinga

    Patrick Chinamasa
    Biography: Deputy Minister of Agriculture; Attorney General, Zimbabwe; Acting Minister of Finance, 2009; Minister of Justice, 2000-05 and 2006 to date. Commentary: A shrewd political tactician, prominent figure in Zimbabwe African National Union's (ZANU) upper ranks and a hard-line Mugabe loyalist. Patrick Chinamasa believes that he has a chance in the succession stakes. He is chief negotiator and legal draftsman for the ZANU-PF, he knows his way around the constitution and international law and is said to make sure that Mugabe does not break it.
    Patrick Chinamasa

    Mr Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo
    Married to Rebecca Akufo-Addo (nee Griffiths-Randolph), has five children. Education: Lancing College, Sussex, United Kingdom; BSc Economics, University of Ghana, Legon, Ghana, 1967; called to the English Bar, Middle Temple, 1971; called to Ghanaian Bar, 1975. Career: Associate Council, Coudert Frères, France, 1971-75; Senior Partner and co-founder, Akufo-Addo Prempeh & Co; General Secretary, People’s Movement for Freedom and Justice, 1977-78; Chairperson, DHL, Ghana, 1984-2001; Vice-President, Greater Accra Regional Branch, Ghana Association, 1991-96; Founder and Chairperson, Ghana Committee on Human and People’s Rights; Chairperson, Kinsenic Communications Co. Ltd, 1991-2001; New Patriotic Party (NPP) Parliamentary Candidate, Abuakwa Consituency, 1992, 1996, 2000; Member of Parliament, NPP Abuakwa Constituency, 1997-2001, 2001-05, 2005-09 (South Abuakwa); Chairperson, Parliament Select Committee on Subsidiary Legislation, 1997-2001; Attorney General, 2001-03; Chairperson, Legal Service Board, 2001-03; Minister for Foreign Affairs, 2003-07; President, United Nations Security Council, 2006; Chairperson, African Union Executive Council, 2007.
    Mr Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo

    Mr Alan John Kwadwo Kyerematen (Alan Cash)
    Married to Patricia Kyerematen (nee Nyinah), has two children. Education: O levels, Adisadel College, Cape Coast, Ghana; A Levels, Achimota School, Accra; BSc Economics, BA Law, University of Ghana; qualified as a Barrister, Ghana Law School. Career: Senior Corporate Executive, UAC Ghana Ltd, Unilever International; Principal Consultant and Head of Public Systems Management, Management Development and Productivity Institute; Regional Director, Enterprise Africa, United Nations Development Programme; Founding Chief Executive, EMPRETEC Ghana, 1990; appointed Ambassador to the United States, National Patriotic Party (NPP) administration, 2001; Minister of Trade and Industry, NPP, 2003-07. Commentary: Alan Kyerematen lost to Nana Akufo-Addo in the race for an NPP presidential candidate for the 2008 and 2012 elections. During his first campaign, Kyerematen announced his resignation from the party, but was shortly afterward encouraged to revoke his decision by senior party officials, leaving fellow members to question his loyalty. In 1994, he was named in TIME magazine's list of top 100 Global Leaders of the New Millennium. In 2001, he became Ghana's first ambassador to the US under Former President John Agyekum Kufuor.
    Mr Alan John Kwadwo Kyerematen (Alan Cash)

    Yaw Osafo-Maafo
    Education: Achimota School, Accra; BSc Mechanical Engineering, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi, 1967; Diploma from the Metal Engineering Institute, United States. Career: Managing Director, Bank for Housing and Construction, Ghana, 1982-89; Managing Director, National Investment Bank, Provisional National Defence Council (PNDC), 1990-92; Chair Representative, Ghana Institution of Engineers; Member of Parliament, Akim Oda Consituency, Ghana, 1997-2009; Minister for Finance & Economic Planning, New Patriotic Party (NPP) administration, 2001-05; Minister of Education, Youth & Sports, NPP administration, 2005-06.
    Yaw Osafo-Maafo

    Mr Akenten Appiah-Menka
    Education: Abuakwa State College, Kyebi, Ghana. Career: Managing Director of Apino Soap, Ghana; President, Association of Ghana Industries (AGI); Former Attorney General, Ministry of Justice; Founding Member of the New Patriotic Party (NPP).
    Mr Akenten Appiah-Menka

    John Evans Atta Mills
    Married to Ernestina Naadu, one child Education: A Levels, Achimota School, Accra, 1963; LLB University of Ghana, Legon, 1967; PhD, Law, School of African and Oriental Studies (SOAS), University of London, United Kingdom, 1971; Fulbright Scholar, Stanford Law School, United States. Career: Lecturer, Faculty of Law, University of Ghana; Acting Commissioner, Inland Revenue Service (IRS), 1988; Substantive Commissioner, IRS, 1993; Vice-President, Office of the President of Ghana, 1997-2001; President of Ghana, 2009 to 2012. Commentary: The President basked in the reflected glory of US President Barack Obama’s first official visit to Sub-Saharan African. Ghana is a favourite with African-American tourists and while he was President, Mills wanted to attract serious American investment, both in the new oil and gas industry and in the lacklustre manufacturing sector. Soft-spoken Mills was a total contrast to preceding National Democratic Congress (NDC) President, Jerry John Rawlings. Managing relations with Rawlings and his powerful NDC supporters calls for special skills. Mills’s self-effacing style went down well, but there were fears that his apparent lack of toughness could be problematic if the world’s economic crisis prompts social protests. Mills won the 2008 elections with just 40,000 more votes than his rival, Nana Akufo-Addo, and struggled to stabilise the economy. He aimed for a technically strong and less politically partisan government, with a new economic advisory committee bringing in experts from business and academia to help coordinate government strategy. Mills was the first Ghanaian head of state to die in office.
    John Evans Atta Mills

    Professor Agyeman Badu Akosa
    Career: Consultant Histopathologist, Clinical Director of Pathology, Forest Healthcare Trust, Whipps Cross Hospital, London, United Kingdom; Director General, Ghana Health Service, Ghana, 2003-07; Professor, Pathology, University of Ghana Medical School.
    Professor Agyeman Badu Akosa

    Mr Paa Kwesi Nduom (Papa Kwesi Nduom)
    Married to Yvonne Nduom, four children Education: O Levels and A Levels, St. Augustine’s Secondary School, Cape Coast, Ghana, 1966-73; BA in Economics, Marquette University, United States, 1975; MSc in Management, 1977; PhD in Service Delivery Systems, University of Wisconsin School of Business, 1982. Career: Underwriter, Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Company, Milwaukee, 1975-78; Blue Cross Shield, Wisconsin, 1978-79; Budget and Management Analyst, Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewage District, 1979-81; Partner, Touche Ross (now Deloitte & Touche), 1986-present; Minister for Economic Planning and Regional Intergration, 2003-05; Minister for Public Reform, 2005-07; CPP Presidential Candidate, 2008. Commentary: Paa Kwesi Nduom ran for president in 2008 on the ticket of the CPP, but secured only 1.3% of the vote. Although he held various ministerial positions in John Agyekum Kufuor's government he was not a member of the New Patriotic Party (NPP). As leader of Kwame Nkrumah's CPP, he failed to convince Samia Nkrumah, daughter of the party's founder, to run alongside him in the 2008 elections. Nduom has a number of investments in Ghanaian companies including Coconut Grove Hotels, Gold Coast Securities and First National Savings and Loans Bank.
    Mr Paa Kwesi Nduom (Papa Kwesi Nduom)

    Dr Kwame Nkrumah (Born: Francis Nwia Kofi Ngonloma)
    Married to Fathia Nkrumah (nee Rizk), four children. Education: Teacher’s Certificate, Achimota School, Accra, 1930; BA Economics and Sociology, & MA Philosophy, Lincoln University, United States, 1939-42; MSc Education, University of Philadelphia, 1943; PhD Anthropology, London School of Economics, United Kingdom, 1945. Career: Various teaching positions, Roman Catholic Junior School, Elmina Axim, 1930-1932; General Secretary, United Gold Coast Convention, 1947; Founder and Leader of the Convention People’s Party (CPP), 1949; Prime Minister of Ghana, 1957-60; President of Ghana, 1960-66.
    Dr Kwame Nkrumah (Born: Francis Nwia Kofi Ngonloma)

    Dr Edward Nasigri Mahama
    Married to Comfort Mahama, four children Education: O Levels, Tamale Secondary School, Tamale, 1961-65; Preliminary Science, University of Ghana, Legon, 1965-66; MB, ChB Degree, University of Ghana Medical School, Legon, 1966-72. Career: Primary Healthcare Physician, Baptist Medical Centre, Nalerigu, 1974-76; Resident/Chief Resident, Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Columbus Hospital, Chicago, United States, 1977-80; Staff Physician, Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Board of Health, Chicago, 1978-90; Clinical Instructor, Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Northwestern University, USA, 1978-90; Lecturer and Consultant, Korle Bu Teaching Hospital, Ghana, 1990; PNC Presidential Candidate, 1996, 2000, 2004, 2008.
    Dr Edward Nasigri Mahama

    Nana Ohene Ntow
    Career: General Secretary, New Patriotic Party, Ghana, 2005-; Director, Business Watch, 2007-; Officer-In-Charge, V-Net TV, 2007-. Commentary: In May 2010 Nana Ohene Ntow fought back claims by the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC) supporting publications, the Ghana Palaver and the Enquirer, that he has tried to avoid repaying a loan to Micro-finance and Small Loans Centre (MASLOC). In January he also dismissed claims that the NPP were involved in scaremongering the Ghanaian public into believing they were going to be the victims of a supposed earthquake. Richard Quashigah, NDC Propaganda Secretary attributed the rumour to the NPP despite having no evidence for his claim.
    Nana Ohene Ntow

    Mr Hackman Owusu-Agyeman
    Education: St. Augustine’s College, Cape Coast; BSc Agriculture, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, 1961-65; PG Certificate in Agriculture Planning, Institute of Social Studies, The Hague, Netherlands, 1967; MSc Agriculture Economics, Wye College, University of London, United Kingdom, 1969. Career: Economist, Ministry of Agriculture, 1965-68; Senior Agricultural Economist, Ministry of Agriculture, 1968-70; Field Programme Officer, 1974-7; Economist, Economic Analysis Division, 1977-79; Co-operation and Liason Officer, Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO), Rome, Italy, 1979; Chief of Mission, FAO Zambia, 1979-84; Representative, Trinidad and Tobago & Guyana, 1984-89; Regional Bureau Officer for Africa, FAO, Rome, 1984; Treasurer, New Patriotic Party (NPP), 1992; Member of Parliament for New Juaben North Constituency, 1996, 2000, & 2004; Minister for Foreign Affairs, 2001-03; Minister for the Interior, 2003-05; Minister for Works and Housing, 2005-09.
    Mr Hackman Owusu-Agyeman

    Dr Kwame Addo-Kufuor
    Education: Achimota School, Ghana; University College Hospital Medical School, London, United Kingdom; Medicine, University of Cambridge, UK, 1970; postgraduate studies, Middlesex Medical School, London, UK, 1975. Career: Medical doctor: West Suffolk General Hospital, Bury St Edmunds, St Charles Hospital, London, Old Church Hospital, Essex, and St Heliers Hospital, London; Minister of Defence, New Patriotic Party (NPP) Government, 2001-08; Minister of the Interior, NPP Government, 2008-09.
    Dr Kwame Addo-Kufuor

    Mr Boakye Kyeremateng Agyarko (Torino)
    Married to Antoinette Duah Education: Mfanstipim School, Cape Coast, 1969-76; BA, Economics and Political Science, University of Ghana, Legon, 1976-79; Banking Advanced Professional Certificate, American Institute of Bankers; MBA, Pace University, New York, United States. Career: Junior Economist, Management & Investment Consultants Limited, Accra, 1981-84; Banker, Vice-President, and Head of Global Network Management, Bank of New York, USA, 1985-2007.
    Mr Boakye Kyeremateng Agyarko (Torino)

    Paul Kagame
    Education: Ntare Secondary School, Uganda; Military Training, Fort Leavenworth, United States of America, 1990. Career: Guerilla fighter, 1979-86; Head of military intelligence, 1986-90: National Resistance Army, Uganda; Leader, Rwanda Patriotic Front (RPF), 1990-94; Vice President and Minister for Defence, Government of National Unity, 1994-2000; Chairman, PPF (became partner of Government of National Unity); President, Republic of Rwanda, 2000-present. Commentary: Paul Kagame, born of Tutsi parents on the Rwandan side of that border, was taken as a youth into exile in Uganda, where he learned excellent English and Kiswahili but no French, the language of Rwanda's administration. In due course, with many Tutsi fellow exiles, he left the NRA to become head of the Armée Patriotique Rwandaise. He has been President of Rwanda since May 2000. 2010 started well for Kagame's international standing when an independent inquiry (see Pointer) has scotched the accusation by French anti-terrorism Judge Jean-Louis Bruguière that Kagame's Front Populaire Rwandais (FPR) triggered the genocide by shooting down the aircraft carrying President Juvénal Habyarimana on 6 April 1994. Kagame has kept Congolese President Joseph Kabila on side. Britain and the United States think the impressive economic recovery makes Rwanda one of Africa's bright hopes while in November, after some wobbles and bickering, the Commonwealth embraced Rwanda. November 2010 saw Kigali win a round of the blame game when a 545-page report mapping human rights violations in Congo-Kinshasa in 1993-2003 was leaked. The report suggested that Rwandan troops might have committed 'crimes of genocide' in eastern Congo-Kinshasa in 1997; if the UN endorsed those claims, Kigali said it would have no choice but to withdraw its 3500 troops from the UN force in Darfur, Sudan.
    Paul Kagame

    Meles Zenawi
    Ethnicity: Tigrean Married to: Azeb Mesfin with 3 children Education: elementary, Queen of Sheba Junior Secondary School; General Wingate School, Addis Ababa, 1972; Addis Ababa University, Medical Faculty, 1972-74; M.A. Business Administration, First Class, Open University, London, 1995; MSc., Economics, Erasmus School, Netherlands, 2004 Career: Joined the TPLF, 1974; Elected leader of the Leadership Committee of the TPLF, 1979; Elected leader of the Executive Committee, 1983; Appointed Chairman of the TPLF and the EPRDF, 1989; President of the Transitional Government of Ethiopia and Chairman of the Council of Representatives, 1991-1995; Chairman of the African Union, 1995-1996; elected Prime Minister of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, 1995, re-elected, 2000 and 2005
    Meles Zenawi

    Bethuel Kiplagat
    Biography: National Christian Council of Kenya, 1971-78; Ambassador to France, 1978-81; High Commissioner to UK, 1981-83; Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 1983-91; Chair, Board of the African Medical and Research Foundaton, 1991-03; Kenya’s Special Envoy to the Somalia peace process, 2003-05; Commissioner, Truth Justice and Reconciliation Commission, 2009-10 Commentary: Bethuel Kiplagat worked with Kenya’s National Christian Council of Kenya from 1971-78. A Kalenjin, he served in ex-President Daniel arap Moi’s government for thirteen years from 1978-1991, as Kenya's Ambassador to France and then High Commissioner to Britain between1978-83. He then was appointed as the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs under Robert Ouko from 1983-1991 until the latter's torture and murder, apparently by allies of President Moi. Those critical of the Moi government's investigations into Ouko's death have criticised Kiplagat for not doing more to press the issue; they also raise questions about his relations with British business man Tiny Rowland and his Lonrho conglomerate, and the Mozambican rebel group, Renamo. Kiplagat left government in 1991 to concentrate on business and civic work: he chaired the Board of the African Medical and Research Foundation (AMREF) and then the Nairobi Stock Exchange until 2003. From 2003-2005, he was Kenya’s Special Envoy on the Somalia peace process and worked on other peace initiatives in the region. He is the Executive Director of the Kenya-based, the Africa Peace Forum and Concerned Citizens for Peace and formerly was Chancellor of Edgerton University. Internationally, Kiplagat's reputation was high: Chairman of the Africa Peer Review Mechanism of the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD), on the Board of the International Crisis Group (ICG) and then appointed Chairman of Kenya's Truth Justice and Reconciliation Committee in August 2009. He held this position until he was forced to resign after allegations in the Ndung’u Report of Kiplagat illegally acquiring land, accusations in the Parliamentary Select Committee’s report into Foreign Minister Robert Ouko’s murder in 1990, accusing Kiplagat of being ‘untruthful’ in his testimony to them, and writings alleging he had a role in the Wagalla Massacre in Kenya’s North Eastern Province, where security forces murdered around 3,000 Kenyan Somali Muslims in 1984. He resigned in November 2010.
    Bethuel Kiplagat

    Stephen Kalonzo Musyoka
    Biography: MP, Kitui North, 1985 to date; Minister of Foreign Affairs, 1993-98 and 2003-04; Minister of the Environment, 2004-05; Vice-President, 2008 to 2013. Commentary: Musyoka first obtained a parliamentary seat in 1985 (the Kitui North constituency). He was a prominent member of KANU, serving as National Organizing Secretary from 1988-2002, and remaining with them during the first multi party elections in 1992. He left KANU in 2002 along with Raila Odinga, joining the LDP which, under the NARC umbrella, went on to win the 2002 elections. He served in Kibaki's cabinet but was one of the leaders of the 'No' campain in the 2005 referendum on the proposed new constitution, and was consequently dismissed from his post during the referendum fall-out. In the run up to the 2007 Presidential election Musyoka and Raila Odinga both vied for the ODM-Kenya ticket; the party split into two factions, one with Raila and one with Musyoka, after weeks of tension. Both candidates ran for President, however, official results placed Musyoka third behind Raila and Kibaki with a significantly smaller proportion of the national vote. Kibaki appointed Musyoka Vice-President on Janury 8th 2008.
    Stephen Kalonzo Musyoka

    Uhuru Muigai Kenyatta
    Commentary: Uhuru Kenyatta is the first son of founding President Jomo Kenyatta by his fourth wife, Ngina Kenyatta. Born at the dawn of Kenya’s Independence, he carried in his name, Uhuru (Freedom), the aspirations of his father, recently freed from gaol, and his country’s approaching freedom from British rule. Uhuru attended the strictly Roman Catholic Saint Mary’s School in Nairobi and then Amherst College, Massachusetts, United States, where he graduated with a bachelor’s degree in politics and economics. Despite his privileged background, Uhuru’s sociability and fondness for the national favourite Tusker beer has cast him as a man of the people. In the early 1990s, Uhuru stood with the sons of the Independence nationalists in calling for democratic reform. Among them were Peter Mboya (son of the late Tom Mboya, assassinated in 1969, many say by men close to Kenyatta) and Gem Argwings-Kodhek (son of the late CMG Argwings-Kodhek, himself killed a year earlier in the first of the infamous and politically instigated ‘tragic road accidents’. However, Uhuru remained loyal to the ruling Kenya African National Union and got closer to the then President, Daniel arap Moi, culminating in his failed run for the presidency on the KANU ticket in 2002, which badly split the party. At first strongly critical of President Mwai Kibaki’s government, Uhuru helped Raila Odinga’s Orange Democratic Movement to win its constitutional referendum victory. However, in the run-up to the 2007 presidential election, he declared open support for Kibaki. After the December 2007 election violence, Uhuru changed his rhetoric; dropping the inclusivist talk of the Independence nationalists, he became a staunch defender of conservative Kikuyu interests. Kenyatta was charged along with six others by the International Criminal Court for crimes against humanity linked to the electoral violence. Nonetheless, he stood in the 2013 presidential elections and beat his opponent Odinga (50.07% to 43.28%). Despite pleas by Odinga – who believed the vote had been rigged – for a recount, the Supreme Court judged the election free and fair and Kenyatta was sworn in as President on 9 April 2013. Kenyatta and his Vice-President, William Ruto, who is also charged with crimes against humanity, are due to appear at the ICC later this year.
    Uhuru Muigai Kenyatta

    General Siphiwe Nyanda (Gebuza)
    Biography: Recruiting Officer, ANC (underground), 1974-76; Comander, Urban Operations, 1977-79; Commander, Trasvaal Urban Machinery, 1979-83; Chief of Staff, Transvaal Command (Eastern Command), 1983-86; Commander, Border Operations, Swaziland, 1986; Deputy Head, Politico Military Underground Leadership in South Africa, 1988-90; Chief of Staff, Umkhonto we Sizwe, 1992-94; Chief, Defence Force Staff, 1994-97; General Officer Commanding, Gauteng Command, SANDF, 1997-98; Academic Registrar, SA National Defence Force, Pretoria, 1998; Chief, SA National Defence Force, 1998-05; Minister of Communications, 2009-2010.
    General Siphiwe Nyanda (Gebuza)

    Dr Kwabena Duffuor
    Education: O Levels and A Levels, Prempeh College, Kumasi, 1957-64; BSc Economics, University of Ghana, 1964-68; MBA, Finance and Banking, Syracuse University, New York, United States, 1974; MA Economics, Syracuse University, 1975; PhD International Finance, Syracuse University, 1979. Career: Volta River Authority, 1968-70; Chief Economist, Head of Research Department, and General Manager of London Branch, Ghana Commercial Bank, 1969-95; Economist, Africa Department, International Monetary Fund (IMF), 1979-80; Deputy Governor, Bank of Ghana, 1995-97; Governor, Bank of Ghana, 1997-2001; Finance Minister, 2009 to date. Commentary: Perhaps the toughest job in President John Atta Mills's government is the Finance and Economic Planning portfolio, held by Kwabena Duffuor. Having, by reducing duties and levies, brought petrol prices down by 5% to fulfil Mills's campaign pledge, the government was then forced to raise them to match world market prices. November 2010 saw him announce, in a budget that pleased almost nobody, the most cautious projections on oil export revenues and effects of fresh Chinese loan finance. There is a brutal logic to Duffuor's calculations as he strives to balance the books and pay off substantial arrears to domestic contractors. But that logic – which involves tax hikes across the board – is not one that appeals to the ruling National Democratic Congress, now preparing for national elections in 2012. He insists that much work still has to be done to stabilise Ghana's economy - his projections are about a third of previous estimates of revenues from Ghana's first full year as an oil exporter.
    Dr Kwabena Duffuor

    Flight Lieutenant Jerry John Rawlings (J.J.)
    Education: O Levels, Achimota School, 1966; Officer Cadet Training, Ghana Military Academy, Accra and Takoradi, 1967-69. Career: Pilot, Ghana Air Force (GAF), 1969-78; Flight Lieutenant, GAF, 1978-92; Head of State, Armed Forces Revolutionary Council (AFRC), 1979; Head of State, Provisional National Defence Council (PNDC), Ghana, 1981-93; President of Ghana, National Democratic Congress (NDC), 1993-2001. Commentary: Rawlings staged his first military coup as a young revolutionary in May 1979. When it failed, he was imprisoned and sentenced to death. Following another coup mounted by junior army officers in June 1979, Rawlings was set free, and became Head of State under the banner of the the Armed Forces Revolutionary Council. In September 1979, the AFRC handed over power to Hilla Limann of the People's National Party, after he won the presidential elections. In 1981, Rawlings toppled Limann in yet another coup. He remained a military dictator for 12 years until he was elected President in 1993, a position he held until 2001, when John Kufuor's New Patriotic Party (NPP) government came to power. Although praised by many in the West as a democratic figure, especially in comparison to his counterparts in Sierra Leone and Liberia, Rawlings has not been able to shake off the stigma of military dictatorship. As founder of the NDC, he continues to wield considerable influence over the party. Despite backing John Atta Mills in his bid for the presidency, he was very vocal in his criticism of the Mills government.
    Flight Lieutenant Jerry John Rawlings (J.J.)

    Dr Kwesi Botchwey
    Education: LLB, University of Ghana; LLM, Yale Law School, United States; PhD, University of Michigan Law School, USA. Career: Law Professor at the University of Zambia, the University of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, the University of Ghana, and Tufts University, US; Minister of Finance, National Democratic Congress (NDC) government, 1982-95; appointed Director of Africa Research and Programmes, Centre of International Development, Harvard University, 2003. Commentary: Kwesi Botchwey is currently a member of President John Atta Mills' Economic Advisory Council along with former Prime Minister Paul Victor Obeng, Trade Minister Hannah Tetteh and GNPC Director Kyeretwie Opoku. . Under Former President Jerry Rawlings, he was Ghana's longest standing Finance Minister and pioneered the country's economic reforms and Structural Adjustment Programmes in 1982-1996.He ran unsuccessfully against John Mills in the NDC primaries.
    Dr Kwesi Botchwey

    José Eduardo Dos Santos
    Ethinicity: Mbundu Son of: Eduardo Avelino, bricklayer, and Jacinta José Paulino. Career: Joined MPLA, 1961; guerrilla training, 1961, Congo Kinshasa; MPLA youth leader, Congo; MPLA representative, Congo-Brazzaville, 1963; MPLA communications operator, northern front and Cabinda, 1970-74; MPLA Central Committee, 1974; Foreign Minister, 1975-79; Central Committee Secretary for National Reconstruction, 1977-79; first Deputy Prime Minister, 1976-78; Minister of Planning, 1978-79; elected MPLA President then invested as national President, September 1979; member, MPLA Politburo, 1979 to date; elected President of Peoples' Assembly, 1980 to date. Commentary: Criticised for being indecisive and withdrawn, President dos Santos consistently confounds those who underestimate him. A political and economic dealmaker, Dos Santos started his career with a technocratic image and rose through the MPLA overshadowed by the man he later succeeded, the charismatic poet-ideologue President Agostinho Neto. Few believed that nearly two decades later, he would still be in office. He owed his survival to an ability to swim in the mid-stream of the MPLA, maintaining his course against crosscutting currents. Dos Santos' greatest triumph was the 1992 election campaign when he fought doggedly against what many believed would be a victory for UNITA's Jonas Savimbi. Dos Santos' calm public persona and youthful good looks, together with the promise of a better economic future, captured the public imagination far more than Savimbi's bellicose threats. Defeating Savimbi in the first round of the elections gave Dos Santos legitimacy, allowing him to distance himself from the flagging MPLA. Yet his vacillation in the post-election crisis (when Savimbi cried fraud, retreated to Huambo and UNITA captured 80% of Angola) rankled hardliners in the army and the Interior Ministry who demanded a decisive response. Relations between the Futungo de Belas presidential palace and the military have not recovered. While Dos Santos' kitchen cabinet of Futungistas, including First Lady Ana Paula, wield executive power on economic and business matters, Forças Armadas Angolanas (FAA) Chief of Staff General Joao de Baptista de Matos runs the military. In November 1994, with the FAA nearing UNITA's Huambo headquarters, Dos Santos promised United States and United Nations diplomats that he would stop an attack on the rebel capital : days later, FAA forces entered and overran Huambo. Gen. De Matos called it a decisive victory and criticised the Lusaka peace accord (signed then), which halted FAA advances in the north-eastern diamond fields. Dos Santos' wooing of former enemies, such as the United States and South Africa, has succeeded spectacularly. His position has strengthened since the fall of Savimbi supporter Mobutu Sese Seko and the coming to power of Laurent Désiré Kabila, a diplomatic and military success for Angola , Rwanda and Uganda. But the dramatic economic collapse combined with the ad hoc distribution of Angola's resources - diamonds for UNITA and oil for the MPLA barons - has sown disaffection with a leadership increasingly perceived as remote and unaccountable. Recurrent reports of stirrings in the military, sporadic demonstrations of social unrest and a lack of presidential direction suggest the biggest threat to Dos Santos came not from UNITA, but from the society he has ruled.
    José Eduardo Dos Santos

    Seyoum Mesfin

    Seyoum Mesfin

    Mr Solomon Ekuma Dominic Berewa (Solo B)
    Education: Christ the King College, Bo, Sierra Leone; Fourah Bay College, University of Sierra Leone; Stanford Hall, Loughborough Cooperative College, United Kingdom, 1967-67; University of Newcastle-upon-Tyne; 1968; Inns of Court School of Law, London, 1970-73. Career: Cooperative officer, Government of Sierra Leone, 1966-70; Founding partner, Betts & Berewa-Solicitors, 1980-96; Special prosecutor, The Reublic of The Gambia, 1982; Attorney general and Minster of Justice, 1996-2002; Vice President, Republic of Sierra leone, 2002-07; Defeated candidate of the 2007 Presidential elections, Sierra Leone. Commentary: The favoured Sierra Leone People's Party candidate in August 2007's Presidential elections, Solomon lost to Ernest Bai Koroma of the All People's Congress. The traditional SLPP vote was split for these elections after Charles Margai, politician, lawyer, nephew and son of previous SLPP Prime Ministers Milton and Albert respectively, broke away to form the People's Movement for Democratic Change. He had lost the SLPP leadership in 1996 to Kabbah, then in 2005 to Berewa.
    Mr Solomon Ekuma Dominic Berewa (Solo B)

    Welshman Ncube
    Career: Law lecturer, University of Zimbabwe, 1986-92; Law Professor, University of Zimbabwe, 1992-99; Member, Law Development Commission of Zimbabwe, 1997; Spokesman, National Constitutional Assembly, 1999; Secretary-General, Movement for Democratic Change, 1999-05; Member of Parliament for Bulawayo North East, 2000-05; charged with treason together with Morgan Tsvangirai and Renson Gasela but acquitted, 2002; Member of Parliament, Bulawayo East; 2005-08; Secretary-General, Movement for Democratic Change-Mutambara, 2005 to date; Chief Negotiator for MDC-Mutambara faction 2006-; lost elections for Makokoba seat 2008; Minister of Industry and Commerce, 2009-; Commentary: Welshman Ncube rose to prominence in 1999 as one of the academics that joined the worker-dominated Movement for Democratic Change, landing the powerful post of Secretary-General. He remained Tsvangirai’s right hand man for the next six years but split with him in 2005 after Tsvangirai refused to participate in the re-introduced senate elections. Though his faction ended up the smaller of the two, Ncube walked away withmore Parliamentary seats than Tsvangirai but surrendered the party leadership to outsider Arthur Mutambara, an action that puzzled a lot of MDC supporters and eventually cost the party the vote in the 2008 elections. Ncube was the chief negotiator for the Mutambara faction helping craft both the Kariba Constitution and sealing the agreement that brought about the Global Political Agreement under which the three parties joined the government of national unity in February 2009. Ncube was appointed Minister of Industry and Commerce, a very powerful post. But he has no political base since he lost his parliamentary seat in the 2008 elections. He remains a key political player and, potentially, a powerful broker in Zimbabwe South-Africa relations as his son, Bongani, is married to South African President Jacob Zuma’s daughter, Gugulethu. He is a deeply divisive figure but he has the confidence to stand for the presidency and Deputy Prime Minister Arthur Mutambara has left the leadership contest open for him within the MDC. Ncumbe was elected unopposed as leader of the party but friction has arison since after Mutumbara refused to to cede his government position of Deputy Prime Minister.
    Welshman Ncube

    Tendai Laxton Biti
    Biti rose to prominence after handling high profile cases for the labour movement in the 1990s. He represented the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions in a landmark case that saw the notorious Law and Order Maintenance Act, which did not allow demonstrations without police clearance, repealed. This brought him close to Morgan Tsvangirai who was then Secretary-General of the ZCTU. After the MDC split in 2005 Biti become Secretary General of the party. He was the party’s chief negotiator and, effectively, Tsvangirai’s second in command. As Minister of Finance from 2009 to 2013 he was applauded for his competence.
    Tendai Laxton Biti

    Nicholas Tasunungurwa Goche
    Biography: Secretary-general, Rhodesian Explosive and Chemical Workers Union, 1968-70; Assistant personnel officer, payroll employees and welfare, Zimbabwe Phosphate Industries Ltd, 1970-74; Personnel officer, ZIMPHOS, 1974-77; Exile, 1977-80; Senior administrative officer, Zimbabwean Embassy, Washington, 1980-83; Under-Secretary, Eastern Europe, Asia and the Pacific, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 1984; Ambassador, Romania and Bulgaria, 1984-87; Ambassador, People's Republic of China, 1987-90; Deputy Secretary, Political and Economic Affairs, Minister of Foreign Affairs, 1990-91; Assistant, Embassy in New York, 1991-92; Deputy Secretary for Production, ZANU-PF Mashonaland Central, 1994; Deputy Minister, Foreign Affairs, 1995-00; Minister of State, National Security, 2000-05; Ministe of Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare, 2005-08; Minister of Transport, 2008 to date. Commentary: A long-time Mugabe favourite and a supporter of Emmerson Mnangagwa. Goche was one of the negotiating team behind the unity government and has helped to maintain Mugabe in power. As a former head of the Central Intelligence Organisation, while Minister of State for National Security, Goche is still close to the security forces and he also enjoys a special relationship with the First Family.
    Nicholas Tasunungurwa Goche

    Oppah Muchinguri
    Career: Private Secretary to the President, 1980-81; Deputy Minister of State for External Affairs, 1989-93; Deputy Minister of Environment and Tourism, 1993-97; Deputy Secretary General of the Government Party and later Party Secretary of Education and Deputy Secretary of Women's Affairs, 1993-97; Minister of State in the President’s Office, 1997-2000; Minister of Women's Affairs, Gender and Community Development, 2005-09. Commentary: In Oppah Muchinguri, looks and luck have combined with political acuity to make her a formidable force in the Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front’s faction-fighting. Currently she is challenging Vice-President Joyce Mujuru for the leadership of the ZANU-PF Womens’ League. As an aide to Josiah Tongogara, the military commander of ZANU’s Zimbabwe African National Liberation Army in Mozambique, Oppah was a fellow passenger in the car crash which killed Tongogara on the eve of Independence in December 1979. Miraculously, she emerged unscathed. In the late 1980s and 1990s she held several junior ministerial posts under her married name of Rushesha and became close to Robert Mugabe. Her marriage ended in the late 1990s in a messy divorce, and she reverted to her family name of Muchinguri. Mugabe appointed her Governor of Manicaland (although the province voted overwhelmingly for the Movement for Democratic Change). She now works closely with Emmerson Mnangagwa. Their strategy is to dethrone Joyce Mujuru at the Women’s Congress in August and then seek her removal as party Vice-President at the full congress in December. They are believed to have the support of First Lady Grace Mugabe. Mujuru will stoutly defend herself but the accusation that she works hand in glove with Morgan Tsvangirai’s faction of the Movement for Democratic Change will be given an additional twist by the fact that, whether by design or coincidence, she travelled on the plane returning Tsvangirai from his three-week international fundraising foray in June and so was greeted by the assembled MDC airport welcoming party (many of whom had skipped Mugabe’s hastily rescheduled cabinet meeting). Meanwhile, Muchinguri has been despatched with Mnangagwa to Asia by Mugabe on a mission to raise funds and so upstage Tsvangirai’s modest US$300 million in humanitarian aid packages from the West. Tsvangirai’s announcement of China’s $950 mn. credit-line offer is now thought to refer to a facility mooted four years ago but recently resurrected.
    Oppah Muchinguri

    Dr Simbarashe Herbert Stanley Makoni (Simba)
    Career: University of Zimbabwe but expelled for political activity, 1971; BSc chemistry and zoology, University of Leeds, UK, 1973; PhD medicinal chemistry, Leicester Polytechnic, UK, 1975; Deputy Minister of Agriculture, 1980-81; Minister of Industry and Energy Development 1981-83; Minister of Youth, Sport and Culture, 1983-84; Executive Secretary, Southern African Development Community, 1984-93; Managing director, Zimbabwe Newspapers, 1994-97; Managing partner Makonsult,1997-; Minister of Finance and Economic Development, 2000-2002; candidate for the presidential elections campaigning under Mavambo/Kusile/ Dawn, 2008; First president, Mavambo/Kusile/Dawn, 2009-. Commentary: Makoni was a leading political contender within the Zimbabwe African National Union- Patriotic Front until he decided to contest the 2008 presidential elections under a movement called Mavambo/Kusile/Dawn. He was a political activist from his days at secondary school and became one of the youngest deputy ministers at independence in 1980. He was promoted to head the powerful Ministry of Industry and Energy the following year but then demoted to Minister of Youth after failing to solve the problem of fuel shortages. When Makoni joined SADC in 1984 as its executive secretary, most people thought he had been selected by the Zimbabwean government for grooming for a higher post after completing his term. The SADC post raised his profile with international financial institutions like the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank, the African Development Bank and other key donors, especially from the Scandinavian countries, but when he left SADC Makoni was given the job of managing Zimbabwe Newspapers, the country’s largest, but state-controlled, newspaper group. Makoni had been tipped to take over as Minister of Finance but observers believe he was sidelined by ZANU-PF heavyweights, including party spokesman Nathan Shamuyarira, to keep him out of politics. Makoni eventually landed the post of Finance Minister in 2000 in what Mugabe dubbed a government of technocrats whose task was to rebuild the economy and shut out the new opposition Movement for Democratic Chang (MDC). But ZANU-PF hardliners thwarted all efforts by Makoni to transfor the economy, accusing him of being too liberal and too pro-West. Makoni was fired from the finance ministry but he kept a high profile because he was considered the only pragmatic, untainted candidate who could replace Mugabe and was a the same time acceptable to the MDC. However, he was prevented him from contesting the party primaries for the Makoni Central seat for the 2008 elections. After plans to get a replacement for Mugabe at the 2007 special congress failed, Makoni was forced to challenge him. It is believed that Makoni was backed by ZANU-PF heavyweights, mainly Solomon Mujuru, who had promised to resign from the party en masse to join him but they were outmanoeuvred by Mugabe and his campaign manager Emmerson Mnangagwa. The only prominent politician who joined Makoni was Dumiso Dabengwa. Makoni could easily have won the presidential elections if Mujuru and Joseph Msika had openly supported him. But they did not. Makoni lost dismally despite his well-oiled campaign machine. Most people viewed him as a ZANU-PF decoy, planted to sway the urban vote from the MDC. He garnered only 8 percent of the vote, and has been in the political doldrums since. Most people though he would resurrect under the inclusive government but that too flopped. Despite a reputation for being anti-corruption, Makoni remains in the political wilderness.
    Dr Simbarashe Herbert Stanley Makoni (Simba)

    Grace Mugabe (Nee Marufu)
    Commentary: Grace Mugabe came into the limelight in 1996 when she officially married President Robert Mugabe, four years after the death of his first wife, Sally. Grace already had two children with Mugabe: Bona, named after Mugabe’s mother, and Robert Junior. She has an elder son from a previous marriage to Stanley Goreraza, an air force pilot who, reports say, was forced out of the country after Grace entered into an extra-marital affair with Mugabe. Grace is best known for her extravagance, her overseas shopping trips and her appetite for mansions. Many people though she was trying to outdo Princess Diana by buying glamorous outfits, some of which did not seem appropriate for the African climate. She also built mansions in Zvimba, Mugabe’s rural home, ostensibly because she did not want to live in another mansion that Mugabe had built for Sally; at Chivhu, her hometown; and in Harare. She is reported to have several farms in the country and properties in Malaysia and Hong Kong, where she made news after assaulting a British journalist. Her extravagance did not go down well with Zimbabweans as she went on spending sprees at the very time the country’s economy was on a unprecedented economic slide. She became variously known as the “First Shopper” or “Dis Grace”. Some people even blamed her for forcing Mugabe to remain in power so that she could enjoy her overseas shopping trips. Grace is 34 years younger than Mugabe. There have been whispers that she was involved in extra marital affairs with younger, rich and flamboyant business men some of whom were killed or forced to flee the country. Though she entered into politics in 2008, after Mugabe was beaten in the first round of the presidential elections by Morgan Tsvangirai, she does not seem to have the political clout that Sally had.
    Grace Mugabe (Nee Marufu)

    Obert Moses Mpofu
    Biography: Member, ZAPU Youth Movement, 1966-67; Military training, Morogoro, 1968; provincial member, Matabeleland North, 1980; MP, non-constituency, 1987-90; MP, ZANU-PF, Bubi-Umguza, 1990-95; MP, non-constituency, 1995; Governor and Resident Minister, Matabeleland North, 1995-05; Minister of Industry and International Trade, 2005-09; Minister of Mines, 2009 to date Commentary: While the ZANU-PF Mines Minister, Obert Mpofu, is far from the sharpest knife in the cabinet, as world metals prices soared earlier this year, his ministry has been lucky. Minerals, led by platinum, became by far the most prosperous sector and the stranglehold of the parastatal Zimbabwe Mineral and Development Corporation has been broken, resulting in liberalised marketing, helping gold producers and medium sized mining interests. A very wealthy man, Mpofu has been Mugabe's main informant and aide in Matabeleland North since the Willowgate car scandal of the 1980s.
    Obert Moses Mpofu

    Kembo Dugish Campbell Mohadi
    Education: Primary School, Beitbridge; Goromonzi High School, 1965; Commercial Careers College, 1972 Biography: Left for Zambia, 1972; Military training, Moscow; Imprisoned, Khami Prison, 1976-80; Education Officer, Beitbridge District, 1981-85; Central Committee, ZANU-PF, 1984; MP for Beitbridge, 1985-08; National Secretary for Finance, Youth League, ZANU-PF Central Committee, 1989; Deputy Minister of Sport, Recreation and Culture, 1995; Minister of Home Affairs, 2000 to date Commentary: Some surprise was felt when Kembo Mohadi retained his portfolio as co-Home Affairs Minister in 2009. His health is known to be poor and he made no impact in the last cabinet. He is a Mugabe stalwart and his main qualification for the job is through his connections in Matabeleland, where none of the three national leaders carries much clout. His position is ZANU-PF is stronger, his name has been mentioned among the contenders for Party Chairman. He headed the Ministry of Home Affairs with Giles Mutsekwa, an MDC man and one of three MDC ministers under an internal party investigation for corruption earlier this year until Tsvangirai's 24 June 2010 cabinet re-shuffle when Mutsekwa was replaced by Theresa Makone, formerly Minister of Public Works.
    Kembo Dugish Campbell Mohadi

    Joseph Mtakwese Made
    Biography: Minister of Lands, Agriculture and Rural Resettlement, 2000-07; Minister of Agriculture Mechanizaton; Minister of Agriculture, 2009 to date Commentary: Joseph made his entrance into the cabinet as Minister of Lands, Agriculture and Rural Resettlement in 2000 - a highly sensitive post at the time. He headed the Agricultural Development Authority and knew the land issue well as one of ADA's main responsibilities was training farmers and implementing rural development programmes. He was involved in the negotiations for the 1998 agreement on land redistribution. Unkind colleagues suggest that Made's lack of critical faculties made him the perfect choice to implement ZANU-PF's land resettlement programme. As Minister of Agriculture he has not had an easy time. In February of 2010, faced with another poor harvest, he complained that it is the fault of sanctions that new farmers have not got the capital to farm properly.
    Joseph Mtakwese Made

    HE Joseph Msika
    Commentary: Born in Mazoe District, north of Harare, Msika lived briefly in South Africa before returning to Bulawayo where, in the mid-1950s, he became Treasurer of Joshua Nkomo’s newly formed African National Congress. He spent much of the next two decades in and out of detention with his leader. When Nkomo died in 1999, Msika stepped into his post of Vice-President. Msika has been at the centre of nationalist politics for over half a century and his life story runs parallel to Zimbabwe’s liberation movement; he joined it a decade earlier than Robert Mugabe. For Nkomo, Msika represented the Mashonaland wing of the Patriotic Front while for Mugabe, he served as the Matebeleland presence in ZANU-PF. In fact, his family came from the Musikavanhu Ndau chieftainship in southern Manicaland. His role has always been that of a conciliator and he has never been linked to the party’s competing corrupt networks. Joseph Msika died in August 2009. In the months prior to his death he was keen to retire from the vice-presidency on the grounds of age and infirmity but President Robert Mugabe was reluctant to let him go because of the potential problems his departure would create in the hierarchy of his Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front.
    HE Joseph Msika

    Herbert Muchemwa Murerwa
    Biography: Economic Affairs Officer, UN in Ethiopia, 1978; Permanent Secretary, Minister of Manpower, Planning and Development, 1980-82; Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Labour and Social Welfare, 1982-84; Zimbabwe's High Commissioner to the United Kingdom, 1984-90; Minister of Environment and Tourism, 1990-95; Minister of Industry and Commerce, 1995-96; Minister of Finance, 1996-00; Minister of Higher Education, 2000-02; Minister of Finance, 2002-04, 2004-07; Minister of Lands and Land Resettlement, 2008 to date. Commentary: The Zimbabwean economy saw difficult times during Murerwa's recurrent tenure as Finance Minister. His most recent stint ended in 2007. His friends say he resigned after being repeatedly faced down by Gideon Gono. His 2009 return to the Ministry of Lands and Land Reform was a surprise.
    Herbert Muchemwa Murerwa

    Richard Hove
    Ethnicity: Shona- Karanga Career: Bachelor of Commerce, University of Bombay, India, 1962-66; ZANU Lusaka office, 1966-68; chief ZANU representative, Western Europe, 1968-71; member, Dare re Chimurenga (Revolutionary Council) responsible for external affairs, 1971-73; Head of Broadcasting, ZANU Information Department, 1973; Deputy Secretary for External Affairs, 1978; Member of Parliament, Midlands, 1980-85; Minister of Public Service, 1980-81; Minister of Home Affairs, 1981-82; Minister of Trade, 1982-85; Minister of Mines, 1985-90; Minister of Defence, 1990-92; Planning Commissioner, 1992-00; Senator for Mberengwa, 2008-09. Comment: Hove was a dedicated member of ZANU-PF but never quite made it with the electorate. He had no constituency of his own and was considered too arrogant and a bit aloof by the ordinary folk. Though a senior member of the party in the Midlands, he was overshadowed by Vice-President Simon Muzenda in the first decade of independence. When Muzenda left his Gweru seat to stand in Gutu, Hove remained in the shadow of Emmerson Mnangagwa, who controlled the smaller but more vibrant city of Kwekwe. Like Mnangagwa his political career came to an abrupt halt in 2000 when he was defeated by Timothy Mukahlera of the Movement for Democratic Change. But unlike Mnangagwa who was offered the powerful post of Speaker of Parliament after his loss of the Kwekwe seat to Blessing Chebundo of the MDC, Hove was left in the cold. He, however, remained a member of the powerful politburo as secretary for economic affairs. Hove only bounced back last year as senator for Mberengwa, a position he held until his death on August 21, 2009.
    Richard Hove

    Simbarashe Simbaneduku Mumbengegwi
    Ethnicity: Shona-Karanga Career: Youth League, National Democratic Party, 1960-61; Youth League, Zimbabwe African People’s Union, 1962; Youth League, Zimbabwe African National Union, 1963-64; deputy ZANU chief representative, Australia and Far East, 1973-76; ZANU chief representative, Australia and Far East, 1976-78; ZANU chief representative, Zambia, 1978-80; Member of Parliament for the Midlands, 1980-85; Deputy Speaker, 1980-81; Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs,1982; Minister of Water Resources and Development, 1982; Minister of National Housing, 1982-84; Minister of Public Construction and National Housing, 1984-88; Minister of Transport, 1988-90; Zimbabwe’s ambassador and permanent representative to the United Nations, 1990-95;Zimbabwe’s ambassador to Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxemburg and the European Union,1995-99; Zimbabwe’s ambassador to the United Kingdom and Ireland, 1999-2005; Minister of Foreign Affairs, 2005-; Commentary: Mumbengegwi has been a loyal member of ZANU-PF since his youth in the 1960s. He belongs to the elite group that comprised people like Simba Makoni and Witness Mangwende who kept the party and the liberation struggle going through fundraising during their student days overseas. His key role in sustaining the party was rewarded by important diplomatic posts. He was first posted to the United Nations when the country needed funds for its economic structural adjustment programme and wanted to maintain good relations with the international community as it was virtually a one-party state at a time when that system was crumbling across the world. He was then sent to the European Union when Zimbabwe needed to lobby for funds for its land reform programme. When relations with Britain began to sour and Mugabe embarked on his controversial fast track land reform programme which saw him compulsorily taking farms from mainly white farmers, Mumbengegwi was at hand to patch things up as ambassador to the UK. He was finally rewarded by being appointed Foreign Affairs minister. He even managed to retain the post after the formation of the inclusive government. Mumbengegwi has not displayed any presidential ambitions. He belongs to one of the few families trusted by Mugabe. At one stage he held the powerful post of Foreign Affairs while his brother held the even more powerful post of Finance. He has shied away from political bickering between the factions within ZANU-PF but if forced to make a choice he would be likely to side with fellow Karanga Emmerson Mnangagwa.
    Simbarashe Simbaneduku Mumbengegwi

    Stan Mudenge
    Education: Gaths Mine Lower Primary School, 1951; Gokomere Mission Upper Primary School, 1954; Goromonzi High School 1961; University of Rhodesia, 1965; University of York, 1968 Biography: Senior Lecturer and Associate Professor, Fourah Bay College, Sierra Leone, 1971-80; Secretary for External Affairs, ZANU, Lesotho, 1977-80; Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 1980-85; Zimbabwe's Permanent Representative to the United Nations, 1985-90; Senior Permanent Secretary of Political Affairs, ZANU PF, 1991-93; Minister of Higher Education, 1992-95; Minister of Foreign Affairs, 1995-05; Minister of Higher and Tertiary Education, 2005 to date. Commentary: A long-standing presence in ZANU, Mudenge has never been able to achieve real prominence; he has little effective power independent of the presidency. In 2003, while Foreign Minister, he vied for the Vice-Presidency, positioning himself as the candidate who could unite the Karanga. He was demoted to the Ministry of Higher Education after his involvement in the Tsholotsho affair, when Mnangagwa tried to upstage Mujuru by teaming up with Jonathan Moyo, six provincial chairmen and Patrick Chinamasa. They organised a meeting at which they were supposed to stage a smart could that would have seen them sidelining Joyce Mujuru and top party officials linked to her like John Nkomo and Joseph Msika but keeping the party formula by appointing Tenjiwe Lesabe to the post of Vice-President with Chinamasa as national chairman. Mugabe was incensed when he learnt about the plot. He expelled the provincial chairmen, sparing Mnangagwa and Chinamasa but demoting Mnangagwa to the mediocre post of Rural Housing after he lost the Kwekwe seat once again to Chebundo.
    Stan Mudenge

    Jeffery Thamsanqa Radebe (Jeff)
    Biography: Secretary, South African Communist Party Interim Leadership Group. 1991; Chairman, ANC, Southern KwaZulu-Natal, 1991; Minister, Department of Public Works, 1994-99; Chairman, Melson Mandela Millenium Fund, 1998; Minister, Department of Public Enterprises, 1999-04; Minister of Transport, 2004-09; Minister of Justice and Constitutional Development, 2009 to date. Commentary: One of Zuma's closest henchmen, Jeff Radebe was appointed Minister of Justice by Zuma in May 2009. His deputy is another Zuma supporter, Andries Nel. They will probably brush away Zuma's legal woes and may get tough on the judiciary, which was regularly attacked during Zuma's battle against corruption charges.
    Jeffery Thamsanqa Radebe (Jeff)

    Jose Pedro de Morais
    Ethnicity: Ocimbundu Career: Director, foreign trade, Ministry of Industry, 1977-84; United Nations Development Programme, 1984-87; Director, international cooperation, Ministry of Industry, 1987; Director, economic affairs, Ministry of External Relations, 1989-90; Adcisor, Ministry of Industry, 1990-91; Secretary of State for Construction, 1991-92; Governor, World Bank, 1993; Coordinator, European Fund for Development, 1993; Minister of Planning and Economic Coordination, 1994-1996; Executive Director, International Monetary Fund, 1996 to date; Minister of Finance, 2002-2008 Commentary: A dynamic technocrat and an impressive economist, De Morais is fluent in English, French and Portuguese. Having held senior economic posts in the civil service, he was part of a newreform team appointed by President Jose Eduardo dos Santos after the 1993 economic collapse. In 1994 De Morais headed a new Ministry, of Planning and Economic coordinatio; his deputy was Eduardo Severim de Morais (no relation), a white Angolan committed to market economics despite being trained in Cuba. The two drafted the Programa Economico e Social, designed to cut the budget deficit, control inflation and merge exchange rates. They halved inflation to 972 percent in 1994, although it rose again in January 1995. Highly rated by foreign donors and business, De Morais was frustrated by the political constraints on economic management, notably the rerouting of substantial government revenue through channels outside formal budgetary and fiscal controls. After two years as Minister, in June 1996 he was happy to move to Washington as Angola's alternate Executive Director of the International Monetary Fund representing Southern African countries. He was Angola's Minister of Finance from 2002 to 2008.
    Jose Pedro de Morais

    Membathisi Mphumzi Shepherd Mdladlana
    Biography: Teacher, Vukukhanye Primary School, 1972-77; Deputy Principal, Vukukhanye Primary School, 1977-81; Regional Organiser, South Western African Teachers Association, 1980-83; Principal, Andile Primary School, 1982-94; Chairman, Democratic Teachers Union, 1985-90; National President, Democratic Teachers Union, 1990-04; Chairman, Constitutional Assembly Committee, 1994-96; President, SADTU, 1994-98; Deputy Chairman, National Portfolio Committee on Education, 1996-98; Minister of Labour, 1998 to date Commentary: A former trades unionist, he has been described as an affable ex-teacher. His long tenure as Minister of Labour allowed him to see much change in South Africa. In 2000 he was caught between Mbeki's reformism and union solidarity, he is an SACP member and this was key in his rewriting of labout laws at the time. He has faced criticism from business leaders for not moving further towards deregulation. He faced up to big business again in 2006, when he threatened to name and shame companies that did not implement the Employment Equity Act and issued a list of 1,296 companies, 13 of them JSE listed, that had failed to submit their equity reports the year before. Mdladlana was replaced as Labour Minister in November 2010, by Mildred Oliphant.
    Membathisi Mphumzi Shepherd Mdladlana

    John Sembe Morlu
    Education: Double Bachelors, Economics and International Relations, Thomas Jefferson's University of Virginia; MBA, Finance, Johns Hopkins; Masters, International Commerce and Policy, George Mason University Biography: Audit Manager, Unisys Corporation; Senior Consultant, BearingPoint; Senior Financial Analyst, Teligent; Auditor General, Liberia, 2006 to date. Commentary: John Morlu is known for his willingness to speak out. 2007 saw him declare the Johnson-Sirleaf government 'three times more corrupt' than the National Transitional Government (2003-05) under Charles Gyude Bryant. He did not claim that Johnson-Sirleaf was personally corrupt but he did raise questions about 'parallel budgets'. Johnson-Sirleaf responded angrily to the criticisms, claiming that he was working outside of his mandate: 'The Auditor General's review and analysis of the draft National Budget amounts to pre-audit and not post-audit as mandated by law …In conducting such a pre-audit, the Office of the General Auditor acted in conflict with, or at best in deviation from, its statutory duty.' He was viewed by many Monrovians as a hero who stood up the bureaucrats and raised important questions about the meagre budget. Earlier this year, Morlu also slammed the ministries of Health, Education, Mines and Finance, over several million dollars of unaccounted funds. He was supported in the audit by President Johnson-Sirleaf but she continued to blame the findings on systematic failures rather than willful corruption.
    John Sembe Morlu

    Mr Harry Greaves
    Biography: Economic Advisor, Office of Economic Affairs, 2003-06; Managing Director, Liberia Petroleum Refining Company, 2006-09 Commentary: Greaves was investigated after awarding a dubious contract to Zakhem Engineering, a Lebanese company rehabilitating outdated petroleum storage terminals in Monrovia, and then embarrassing Morris Saytumah, then Minister of State for Finance, Economic and Legal Affairs, by leaking voice recordings which showed that the supposed investigator, Aloysius Jappah, had in fact been sent to Greaves to demand $300,000 in extortion money. A long-time confidante of President Johnson-SIrleaf, he was fired in 2009 following this scandal.
    Mr Harry Greaves

    Lt General Charles Julu (Rock)
    Biography: Chief of Security, LAMCO; Commander, Executive Mansion Guard Battalion, 1983-90; Chief of Staff, the Armed Forces of Liberia, 1990 ; Exile, 1990-94; Detained, Post Stockade military prison, Barclay Training Centre, 1994-96; Commentary: Also known as 'Rock', General Charles Julu was the Commander of the Armed Forces of Liberia under Samuel Doe. He was arrested on 20th July 2007 by the National Security Agency, headed by Fumbah Sirleaf, and accused of subversive acts and then charged with treason in Monrovia City Court along with colonels Andrew Dorbor (arrested in February) and Wolo Nagbe; Jacob Kaarahn, who is Lebanese; and Ephraim Junior Gaye, a cousin of Julu's. The writ before the Monrovia Court states that a video taken in Yamoussoukro shows some of the accused discussing arms shipments from Côte d’Ivoire intended to remove 'a government headed by lady Delilah' (presumably Sirleaf). Julu backed the late President Samuel Kanyon Doe and led a failed coup in 1994 against David M. Kpormakpor's transitional government. The defendants are from Grand Gedeh County, home of Doe and footballer-politician George Oppong Weah, who leads the largest party, the Congress for Democratic Change. Johnson-Sirleaf's Unity Party lost miserably in Grand Gedeh in the 2005 elections, where some leaders see the case as a stitch-up. A trial of Gen. Julu and company might affect peace talks across the border in Côte d’Ivoire. Julu was aquitted by Peter Gbeneweleh, Judge of Criminal Court 'A', in May 2008. He died in 2009, reportedly after having suffered from pneumonia.
    Lt General Charles Julu (Rock)

    Samuel Kanyon Doe
    Education: Primary School, Turzon; R.B. Richardson Baptist Junior High School, Zwedru, dropped out in 1967 Career: Acting first Sergeant, Liberian Army, 1973; Corporal, 1975; Master Sergeant, 1979; Military ruler, Liberia, 1980-90 Commentary: A semi-literate ex-army sergeant, Samuel Doe's 1980 coup ended a century of Americo-Liberian power. Ousting President WIlliam Tolbert, he was initially popular but economic turmoil put an end to this and his regime was detested at home, though it remained supported by Washington. After the outbreak of the first Liberian Civil War in 1989, Doe was tortured and murdered in 1990, ten years after he seized power, by Prince Yormie Johnson, leader of a rebel faction. A staunch football supporter, Doe spent thousands of scarce dollars on training and is one of the heroes of George Weah, the Congress for Democratic Change's 2005 presidential candidate and a former international football star, who visited Doe's grave just before the 2005 polls.
    Samuel Kanyon Doe

    George Tawlon Oppong Ousman Weah
    Career: Young Survivors Clareton, 1981-84; Bongrange Company, 1984-85; Mighty Barolle, 1985-86; Invincible Eleven, 1986-87; Africa Sports, 1987; Tonnerre Yaounde, 1987-88; AS Monaco, 1988-92; Paris Saint-Germain, 1992-95; A.C. Milan, 1995-00; Chelsea, 2000; Manchester City, 2000; Olympique Marseille; Al-Jazira, 2001-03; Liberia National Team, 60 appearances, 1988-02; Fifa World Player of the Year, 1995; Presidential candidate, Congress for Democratic Change, 2005 Commentary: A retired football star and failed presidential bidder, George Weah was defeated by President Johnson-Sirleaf by a 20% margin of more than 150,000 votes in the 2005 Presidential elections. However, he remains an important personage in Liberian politics. He recently retained a Senate seat in a by-election in Montserrado County and his Congress for Democratic Change currently holds 18 seats. He is popular among poor Liberians whose lives have improved little under Johnson-Sirleaf and who are angered by the unfolding reports of corruption scandals in the government. He is also a candidate in the 2011 elections, to be held in October 2011. Incumbent President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf is tipped to win yet a strong push by opposition candidates may mean that she will have to fight a second round against the popular former football star.
    George Tawlon Oppong Ousman Weah

    Ali Belhadj (Ali Belhadj)
    Biography: High school teacher; Imam; imprisoned, 1983-87; Founding member, Islamic Salvation Front (FIS), 1989; imprisoned, 1991-2003; imprisoned, 2005-06 Commentary: One of Algeria's historic chiefs and prominent member of the Front Islamique du Salut (FIS), Ali Belhadj spent almost all of the Algerian civil war in prison. His release was allowed on the condition that he refrain from all political activity. After his release he evaded the police as he toured the mosques of Algiers and it was not long until he was under security service control in 2005. He is a radical icon in the FIS, in 2007 he called upon Muslims to join the jihad in Iraq, 'In Algerian prisons there are many young people whose sole crime is to have left for Iraq to join the jihad and help it by methods authorised by Sharia'. Political prohibitions were lifted from Belhadj in 2008, he was keen to stand in the presidential contest, and confident of his ability to gain votes. His impact in January 2011 riots in Algiers were limited. We hear his efforts to use the disturbances to get militants on to the streets – as he did after Algeria’s pivotal October 1988 riots – came to nothing.
    Ali Belhadj (Ali Belhadj)

    General Manuel Helder Vieira Dias Júnior (Kopelipa)
    Commentary: Enormously wealthy and one of Dos Santos' closest allies. 'Kopelipa' has a number of business interests in addition to his government portfolio. Since 2008 Kopelipa has been regarded as the real head of the presidency, 'O chefe do boss', the boss's boss. Leaks that discredit Kopelipa seem to come from the boss himself, Dos Santos, aka 'Zedu', who is skilled at cutting his rivals down to size. Kopelipa’s 2010 promotion as one of three ministers of state makes him the government’s nominal number four behind Dos Santos, Nando and Civil Chief of Staff Carlos Maria da Silva Feijó, a long-time presidential advisor. He joins the Council of Ministers and also heads the military oversight body, the Casa Militar, with a security apparatus to manage a smooth re-election for Dos Santos. He also remains in charge of the Gabinete de Reconstrução Nacional and the Chinese infrastructure money – though we hear that will soon be taken over by his close ally, José dos Santos da Silva Ferreira, the Minister of Urbanism and Construction.
    General Manuel Helder Vieira Dias Júnior (Kopelipa)

    Li Ruogu
    Education: MA in Law, Beijing University; MPA, Princeton University, United States. Li Ruogu has been Chairman and President of the Export-Import Bank of China (China Exim) since June 2005. He was briefly an assistant professor at Beijing University before joining the People's Bank of China in 1985. In the 1990s, he spent a year as an International Monetary Fund (IMF) economist and four years at the Asian Development Bank, and also acted as liaison to the African Development Bank. A fluent English speaker, Li was known for his defence of China's exchange rate policy when he was Deputy Governor at the People's Bank of China and a member of the Chinese Monetary Policy Committee. Now he is the jetsetting champion of Chinese investment in Africa, promoting the benefits of the infrastructure projects that Exim supports and downplaying the abuses of the regimes with which Exim's deals are struck.
    Li Ruogu

    Mr Mandla Sizwe Vulindlela Gantsho
    Career: Associate, Strategic Planning, Mobile Oil/Engen 1989-1992; Manager, Commercialisation, Transwerk, 1992-1994; Senior Manager, Chief Financial Officer, Transnet Group, 1994-1995; Executive Manager, Development Bank of South Africa, 1995-2000; CEO, Development Bank of Southern Africa, 2001 to date; Non Executive Director, Group 5 Ltd, 2006 to date Commentary: One of President Donald Kabaruka's new management team in 2007. He has a weighty breif with the office of Infrastructure, Private Sector and Regional Integration.
    Mr Mandla Sizwe Vulindlela Gantsho

    Abdelaziz Bouteflika
    Biography: Joined the Front de Liberation Nationale, 1956; Administrative secretary to Houari Boumedienne Minister of Foreign Affairs, 1963-70; self-imposed exile, 1981-87; President, 1999 to date. Commentary: President of Algeria since winning a disputed 81% of the vote, with the backing of the army, in 1999. Bouteflika was re-elected with 90.24% of the vote, from a 74.6% turnout in Presidential elections in 2009. Since there was no heavyweight candidate to stand against him, the re-election was little surprise, more surprising, given the general apathy and the outright anger with the regime in parts of the country, was the 74.6% turnout announced by Interior Minister Nourredine ‘Yazid’ Zerhouni, a long-standing friend of the President. Bouteflika has been holding crisis talks since wide-scale popular unrest in early January 2011, well before the Egyptian protests and even before President Zine el Abidine Ben Ali had to leave Tunisia. Protests about rising prices in Algiers have left at least five people dead, 800 injured and over 1,000 young people arrested in the working class district of Bab el Oued. Bouteflika alternates between promises to liberalise the emergency laws and cracking down hard.
    Abdelaziz Bouteflika

    Nourreddine Yazid Zerhouni (Yazid)
    Biography: Minister of the Interior, 1999-10; Deputy Prime Minister, 2010 to date Commentary: A somewhat controversial figure and a long time friend and close ally of President Abdelaziz Bouteflika. Bouteflika was re-elected with 90.24% of the vote in 2009. Zerhouni announced the surprising 74.6% voter turnout that accompanied this result. After a surprise cabinet reshuffle in May 2010, Yazid was appointed to the newly created post of Deputy Prime Minister.
    Nourreddine Yazid Zerhouni (Yazid)

    Ahmed Ouyahia
    Biography: Advisor to the Algerian ambassador of Cote d'Ivoire, 1978-84; Foreigh Affairs Advisor to the Head of the Permanent Mission of Algeria, United Nations Headquarters, 1984-91; Director of the African Department, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 1991-92; Ambassador to Mali, 1992-93; Under Secretary of State for African and Arab Affairs, 1993-95; Prime Minister, 1995-98; Minister of State and Justice, 1999-00 Leader, Rassemblement National Démocratique (RND), 2000; Prime Minister, 2003-06; Prime Minister, 2008 to date Commentary: Prime Minister Ahmed Ouyahia was born in Kabyle but is widely unpopular there, even among his own family. The former ‘eradicator’, he came back for a third term as Premier in June 2008, replacing Abdelaziz Belkhadem, a politician on the ‘Arab/Islamic’ wing of the ruling FLN. He is known as a politician of considerable will, and considerable ego. He is ambitious, but unpoular, still remembered for massive job cuts during his first spell as Premier. He is also backed by powerful military clans and is thought to have an eye to a future bid for the presidency; he has the right decideur connections to be a contender. Chatter in early 2011 has been widespread about a possible reshuffle that could remove the unpopular Prime Minister. If he goes, his replacement is likely to be another establishment figure: Bouteflika's old friend, the lacklustre Foreign Affairs Minister, Mourad Medelci, or Energy and Mines Minister (and ex-Foreign Minister) Youcef Yousf
    Ahmed Ouyahia

    Abdelaziz Belkhadem
    Biography: Minister of Foreign Affairs; Secretary General, FLN, 2005; Prime Minister, 2006-08; Commentary: One of Bouteflika's inner circle, Belkhadem is detested by secularists in the Front de Liberation Nationale (FLN) and leads the party's pan-Arab/Islamist 'conservative wing'. At various times he has been tipped as a future presidential candidate, a move that might help to bring more radical Islamists into mainstream politics - a double-edged sword that would frighten secular opponents and some foreign partners. Appointed Prime Minister in 2006, 2007 saw his star wane unexpectedly at the beginning of the year following a shift in strategy at the presidency and among key deciders on the thorny issue of how to handle radical Islam. He was replaced as premier in 2008 by Ouyahia, who was also his predecessor, but continues to be a key presence in government and is Secretary of the FLN.
    Abdelaziz Belkhadem

    Abdelmoumen Rafik Khalifa
    Commentary: Rafik has been sentenced to life imprisonment by judge Fatiha Brihimi, after his bank, TV station and airline all crashed financially, and the El Khalifa Bank was found to have defrauded over a million depositors and collapsed with debts of more than US$1.5 billion in 2003. He is due to be extradited from the UK to Algeria in April 2011. Many neutrals question how Khalifa could have risen so high without patronage from the top - commanded now, as during Khalifa's prime, by President Abdelaziz Bouteflika and his circle of close aides. Khalifa's business success was unprecedented in an economy still dominated by state structures and conservative economics. Khalifa Airways effectively replaced the state's Air Algérie as domestic carrier before crashing in financial flames. Khalifa TV crashed too, after El Khalifa Bank was found to have defrauded over 1,000,000 depositors. At his peak, 'Golden Boy' sponsored the French football club Olympique de Marseille FC (itself then a fallen giant) and enjoyed many powerful and glitzy friends; among those cited in court were senior Algerian technocrats and French stars Gérard Depardieu and Cathérine Deneuve. Not bad for a man of 40 who emerged from the suburban family pharmacy to become the first real oligarch of Algeria's post-socialist economy. Many Algerians pointed out that his pharmacist father was a senior member of the Independence war military security, beside luminaries such as Interior Minister Noureddine 'Yazid' Zerhouni and the late Kasdi Merbah. Many believe Khalifa must have been protected by members of the Bouteflika family or the President's then Chief-of-Staff, Larbi Belkheir (now Ambassador to Morocco).
    Abdelmoumen Rafik Khalifa

    Henrique N'Zita Tiago
    Ethnicity: Ioyo Leading the most radical Cabindan faction, Tiago has held out against MPLA pressure to compromise on Cabinda's status. Competition between the rival policical factions in Cabinda is fierce. Tiagos's involvement with the Cabindan separatists dates back to the formation of the Movimento de Libertação do Enclave do Cabinda (MLEC) in 1961, which became FLEC in 1963. FLEC split into three factions in 1975, out of which Tiago led his own group, FLEC-FAC; he helped plan many FLEC-FAC early military operations, including kidnapping four French oil and gas technicians on the Congolese border with Cabinda. Tiago is distantly related to Gabon's President Omar Bongo, who organised a round-table of all Cabindan groups in 1995.
    Henrique N'Zita Tiago

    Naledi Grace Mandisa Pandor
    Biography: Teacher, Seepapitso Secondary School, Botswana, 1981-84; Vice-Chairperson, Alpha Early Learning Centre, 1987-88; Co-ordinator, English for academic purposes: University of Cape Town, 1989-91; Chairperson, African National Congress Athlone Branch, 1991-92; Assistant Director, Academic Support Programme: University of Cape Town, 1992-93; Executive Director, Desmond Tutu Educational Trust, 1993-94; Chairperson, National Council of Provinces, Cape Town, 1999-04; Minister, Department of Education, 2004-09; Minister of Science and Technology, 2009 to date. Commentary: One of 9 women in Thabo Mbeki's 2004 cabinet and the granddaughter of the late ANC President, Z.K. Matthews. She is married to Sharif Pandor, who recieved payments of nearly R1 mn. from Brett Kebble, who was murdered in 2007.
    Naledi Grace Mandisa Pandor

    Constantine Chiwenga
    Career: Joined the Zimbabwe African National Liberation Army (ZANLA), 1973; Member of ZANLA general staff, 1974; Member of ZANLA high command and Deputy Commissar, 1978; Commander 1 Brigade, 1981; Commander 5 Brigade, 1984; Brigadier-General, 1987; Lieutenant-General and Commander of the Zimbabwe National Army, 1994; Full-General and Commander of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces, 2005 to date. Commentary: Constantine Chiwenga kept a largely low profile, being overshadowed by his more vociferous wife Jocelyn, who had tiffs with white farmers and Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) President Morgan Tsvangirai. It was only when President Robert Mugabe’s political career seemed under threat and Tsvangirai was showing signs that he could win the 2008 elections that he hit the headlines when he said he would not salute Tsvangirai echoing ideas of his predecessor Vitalis Zvinavashe just before the 2002 presidential elections. His sentiments were taken seriously as he is Commander of the Defence Forces and is in charge of the Joint Operations Command, though nominally this is under Emmerson Mnangagwa. Chiwenga originally supported Solomon Mujuru who comes from the same province and was commander of the army but seemed to then throw in his lot with Mnangagwa who was once again Mugabe’s favourite. Observers feel that Chiwenga has been given too much credit when the man behind the scene was really Mnangagwa. He could, therefore, be retired any time if he loses favour with Mnangagwa, who is now defence minister. This would go down well with Tsvangirai who feels that the military has no respect for him. *Chiwenga was also known as Dominic Chinenge and only changed his name after the unity accord of 1987.
    Constantine Chiwenga

    Mr Edwin Melvin Snowe
    Education: St Andrews HIgh School, Margibi County; BA, Political Science, University of Liberia. Career: Managing Director, Liberia Petroleum Refinery Company; Speaker of the House of Representatives, 2006-07 . Commentary: Formerly married to Charles Taylor's oldest daughter and a former official of the National Patriotic Party, Snowe's allegiances are often questioned. He and other supporters of Charles Taylor, who is currently being tried for war crimes at the Hague, are thought to have worked hard to undermine the government. There were corruption charges against Snowe related to unaccounted payments of over US$1 million, when in 2003-05 under the National Transistional Government of Liberia (NTGL), he headed the state-owned Liberia Petroleum Refinery Company. Snowe in turn accused the government of awarding exclusive rice-import permits to Sinkor Trading Company. The Monrovia City Court ruled in his favour in August 2009, former justice minister Philip Banks is said to have soft-pedalled Snowe's trial.
    Mr Edwin Melvin Snowe

    Vabah Gayflor
    Education: MSc Women, Gender and Development. Career: Chief of Women's and Children's Affairs Coordination Unit, Ministry of Planning and Economic Affairs; Minister of Gender and Development, 2003 to date. Commentary: One of President Johnson-Sirleaf's star ministers. As Minister in previous government, she set up a special police unit to protect women and children. Sirleaf sees her ministry as symbolically (as well as practically) important.
    Vabah Gayflor

    Brigadier Isaías Henriques Ngola Samakuva
    Married to Ines Satwala, with 5 children Education: Huambo Industrial School, Angola. Career: Joined National Union for the Total Independence of Angola (UNITA) and Forcas Armadas de Libertacao de Angola (FALA), Bie, 1974; Commander, Huambo Province, 1977; Head, UNITA logistics, Southern Front, 1978; Member, Central Committee, 1979; Vice Chairman, UNITA Foreign Affairs Commission; Member of the Strategic Operational Command (COPE), 1984; UNITA Permanent Secretary, and Director of President’s Office, 1986; UNITA representative to the United Kingdom, 1989-95; Delegate, UNITA negotiating team on Lusaka Protocol, 1993-94; UNITA Chief Representative to Joint Commission, 1994; Leader of UNITA 2003 to date.
    Brigadier Isaías Henriques Ngola Samakuva

    Jonas Malheiro Savimbi ('O Mais Velho')
    Married to Ana Isabel Paulino, 5 children Education: Silva Porto Secondary School; University of Lisbon, Portugal, 1958-60; University of Fribourg, Switzerland, 1961-64; University of Lausanne, 1964-65. Career: Secretary General, União das Populaçoes da Angola, 1962; Foreign Minister, Governo Reolucionario da Angola no Exilio, 1962-64; With Antonio Fernandes founded National Union for the Total Independence of Angola (UNITA), 1966; Leader of UNITA, 1968-2002.
    Jonas Malheiro Savimbi ('O Mais Velho')

    Mr Pravin Jamnadas Gordhan
    Married to Vanitha Raju with 2 children. Education: Bachelor of Pharmacy, University of Durban. Career: Pharmacist, King Edward VII Hospital, Durban, 1974-81; Co-chairman of the Transitional Executive Council, 1991-94; Member of Parliament, African National Congress (ANC), 1994-98; Deputy Commissioner, South Africa Revenue Service, 1998-99; Commissioner, South Africa Revenue Service, 1999-2009; Minister of Finance, 2009 to date. Commentary: Making Pravin Gordhan Finance Minister was one of President Jacob Zuma’s shrewder moves. Gordhan is a close and trusted ally and one ANC leader who does not frighten the markets. His reforms at the Revenue Service brought praise from big business and politicians. A former communist, he now shares the views of Trevor Manuel, his internationally admired predecessor, who is Zuma’s economic supremo as Planning Minister. Gordhan favours sound money, inflation-targeting and strict fiscal discipline, all detested by Zuma’s wavering left-wing supporters. From a family of Indian origin, Gordhan was brought up in Durban, capital of Zuma’s own KwaZulu-Natal province, and became a student activist in the 1970s and early 1980s, in Zuma’s ANC faction. For four years he worked in the ANC underground, helping to plan some of its most audacious operations. In the mid-1970s, he was expelled from his job as a pharmacist at King Edward VII Hospital after being detained by the police, and was detained twice more. In 1991, he was appointed Co-Chairman of the Transitional Executive Council that oversaw the change to a democratically elected government. He became a member of parliament, moving to the South Africa Revenue Service in 1998. Until then, the country had enjoyed a ‘culture of non-payment’ in middle-class and corporate life as in the townships. Gordhan and his team controversially offered repeated tax amnesties to defaulters, bringing tens of thousands of new entrants, rich and poor, into the system and ensuring that they kept on paying. The tax take increased with no increase in tax rates. This seemed to surprise Manuel, Finance Minister at the time, whose team had under-forecast revenue every year.
    Mr Pravin Jamnadas Gordhan

    Maite Nkoana Mashabane

    Maite Nkoana Mashabane

    Dr Lindiwe Nonceba Sisulu
    Career: Intelligence specialist, Umkhonto we Sizwe (MK), 1977-79; Teacher, Manzini Central High School, 1981; Lecturer, University of Swaziliand, 1982; Editor Subsidiary, The Times of Swaziliand, 1983; Chief Examiner, History for Junior Certificate Exam, 1985-87; Lecturer, Manzini Teachers Training College, 1985-87; Personal Assistant to African National Congress (ANC) Head of Intelligence, 1990; Chief Administrator, ANC at Convention for a Democratic South Africa, 1991; Consultant, National Children's Rights Committee, UNESCO, 1991; Director, Govan Mbeki Research Fellowship, University of Fort Hare, 1993; Deputy Minister, Department of Home Affairs, 1996-01; Minister of Intelligence, 2001-04; Minister of Housing, 2004-09; Minister of Defence and Military Veterans, 2009 to date. Commentary: Daughter of the much-loved veterans, Walter and Albertina Sisulu, Lindiwe was brought up in Swaziland. She joined Umkhonto we Sizwe (MK), the ANC's armed wing, in the late 1970s, before returning to South Africa in 1990 to be assistant to Jacob Zuma, the then head of the ANC's intelligence division. She became Deputy Minister of Home Affairs under Inkatha Freedom Party leader, Mangosuthu Buthelezi, her first ministerial appointment. However, the sharp-dressing Sisulu had wanted the Foreign Ministry and was disappointed to be moved to head the Intelligence Ministry in 2001 until appointed in 2004 as Minister of Housing, a job with much influence in the party. She knows most of the skeletons in the ANC's closets and has kept her own reputation clean. She became Minister of Defence under Zuma and fought hard to have his corruption case squashed. A close Zuma intelligence buddy, she is another candidate for the presidency of the African National Congress when Zuma retires.
    Dr Lindiwe Nonceba Sisulu

    Mr Tsatsu Tsikata
    Education: LLB, first class honours, University of Ghana; Bachelor of Civil Law, first class honours, Oxford University; Junior Research Fellowship, Corpus Christi College, Oxford University. Career: Lecturer, University of Ghana law faculty, 1974-88; Advisor to Flight Lieutenant Jerry John Rawlings (then Chairman of the Armed Forces Revolutionary Council), 1979 and 1982; Legal Representative, Jerry Rawlings, May 15 uprising treason trial, 1979; Chief Executive Officer, Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC), 1988-2000; advised Equatorial Guinea on the formation of national oil company GEPetrol; advised Benin on developing the Seme oilfield. Commentary: In June 2008, after a six year trial, Tsikata was sentenced to five years in prison for wilfully causing financial loss to the State of US$230,000 and misappropriating public property. Tsikata had guaranteed a loan from Caisse Française de Développement to private company Valley Farms, on behalf of the GNPC. When the company defaulted in 1996, the GNPC was, as guarantor, forced to pay the debt. In January 2009, Tsikata rejected a pardon by outgoing President John Agyekum Kufuor, saying he would clear his own name in court. He was subsequently released by President John Atta Mills, days after his inauguration. In prison, he had suffered severe bouts of asthma, a lifelong ailment. Many viewed the charges against Tsikata as politically motivated and an attempt by the Kufuor government to tarnish a key member of the opposition. President Mills agreed, saying that Tsikata deserved a national award, not prison. As the Accra government decides how to develop its oil and gas sector, Tsatsu Tsikata has re-emerged in public life, this time as a key advisor to President Mills on GNPC reform.
    Mr Tsatsu Tsikata

    Alhaji Muhammad Mumuni
    Education: O Levels, A Levels, Tamale Secondary School, 1962-69; LLB, LLM and BL, Ghana School of Law, 1969-75. Career: National Service Coordinator, National Service Scheme, Ghana, 1975-76; Legal Officer, Bank for Housing and Construction, 1976-1980; Founder and Senior Partner, Yelinzo Law Chambers, Tamale, Ghana, 1980-97; Founder and Chairman, Bonzali Rural Bank Ltd, 1990-95; President, Ghana Bar Association (Northern Region Branch), 1992-96; Minister of State, Ministry of Employment and Social Welfare, National Democratic Congress (NDC) Government, 1993-97; Member of Parliament, Kumbungu Constituency, 1996-2004; Minister for Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, 2009 to date.
    Alhaji Muhammad Mumuni

    Alban Kingsford Sumana Bagbin
    Education: O Levels and A Levels, Tamale Secondary School; University of Ghana, 1977-80; Ghana School of Law, 1980-82; Executive Masters in Governance and Leadership, Ghana Institute of Management and Public Administration (GIMPA). Career: Acting Secretary, Statistical Service Board, Bureau of Statistics and Statistical Service, 1980-82; Personnel Manager, State Hotels Corporation, 1982-83; Teacher, Suk Juma Secondary School, 1983-86; Partner, Akyem Chambers, Ghana; Partner, Law Trust Company, 1993 to date; Minority Leader, National Democratic Congress (NDC), 2001-08; Majority Leader, NDC, 2009-10; Minister for Water Resources, Works and Housing, 2010 to date.
    Alban Kingsford Sumana Bagbin

    Abdelmalek Sellal
    Career: Algerian Ambassador, Hungary; Minister for the Interior, -1999; Minister for Youth and Sports, 1999; Minister for Transport; Minister for Water Resources, to date. Commentary: One of Abdelaziz Bouteflika's inner circle, Abdelmalek Sellal left government, whilst he was transport minister, to run Bouteflika's 2004 campaign. He is tipped as a likely Prime Minister, should Ahmed Ouyahia decide to resign his position in order to run for the presidency. Bouteflika's moves towards a more secular presence in high government since 2007 have kept Sellal's name in the mix; he is a moderniser and close to the army.
    Abdelmalek Sellal

    Lovemore Madhuku
    Education: Bachelor of Law, University of Zimbabwe, 1990; Master of Law degree, University of Cambridge, 1994; ; PhD Law, University of Cambridge, 1999. Career: Founding member of the National Constitutional Assembly (NCA), 1997 Vice-Chairman, NCA, 1999-2001; Chairman, NCA, 2001 to date. Commentary: Lovemore Madhuku has been a thorn in the flesh of both President Robert Mugabe’s government and the current inclusive government since he took over as chairman of the National Constitutional Assembly (NCA) in 2001. He has been fighting for one thing, a people-driven national constitution. Though he was a close ally of Morgan Tsvangirai when he was still secretary-general of the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions and chairman of the NCA and Douglas Mwonzora, present co-chairman of the Parliamentary Committee responsible for the new constitution who was at one time vice-chairman of the NCA, Madhuku insists parliament cannot decide on the new constitution alone. He argues that the Kariba Draft agreed by the three main parties in the inclusive government should not form the basis of the new constitution and has vowed to mobilise people to oppose any new constitution that does not involve civil society. Though the NCA was instrumental in the rejection of the proposed constitution in 2000, most people believe Madhuku cannot pull the bluff this time. Some of the key people that supported the NCA and the rejection of the 2000 constitution such as fellow University of Zimbabwe lecturer, John Makumbe, now argue that Madhuku cannot hold the nation to ransom. Madhuku is probably overplaying the significance of the NCA and underestimating the popularity of Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai. Right now what Tsvangirai says is likely to carry the day. This is not likely to silence Madhuku. He has vowed: "I will not give up my desire for Zimbabweans to have a new constitution; I am prepared to die for it.”
    Lovemore Madhuku

    Martin Kansichi
    Education: BBA, Cambridge University, 1988; MBA, Cambridge University, United Kingdom,1990; Diploma in Political Sciences, Oxford University, UK, 1991; Diploma in Management Consultancy, Oxford University, 1992; Masters in Strategic Management, Oxford University, 2000; PhD. Hons, Business Administration, Kansas City University, USA, 2004. Career: Chairman, Pre-schools, Malawi, 1976-80; Vice Chairman, Employers Group in Malawi, 1982-84; Director, Maltraco Limited, 1990-98; Commercial Director, Wade Adams Construction International, 1990-96; Director, Viply Limited, 1991-94; Vice Chairperson, Petroleum Control Commission, 1994-96; Board Member, Airports Development Ltd, 1996-97; Vice President, Malawi Confederation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry, 1995-03; President, Malawi Confederation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry, 2003-05; Private Sector Advisor in Masters Public Administration Programs of SADC; Chief Negotiator, Council of Ministers of G90 Countries, World Trade Organisation, 2005; High Commissioner of Malawi to Mozambique, 2006 to date.
    Martin Kansichi

    Marc Ravalomanana
    Commentary: The latest political deal opens the way for a return from exile by deposed President and 'Yoghurt King' Marc Ravalomanana. Some wonder if he will steer clear of the next election if he can win guarantees for his extensive business interests. Born in 1949 in Imerinkasinina, a small village near Antananarivo, Ravalomanana attended a Protestant school in Sweden. He is prominent in the Church of Jesus Christ in Madagascar. His fortune was made from dairy produce and his business group, Tiko, still holds the monopoly on all dairy and oil products. In 1999, Ravalomanana launched his political career and was elected Mayor of Antananarivo, the capital. He became President in 2002 after disputed elections. Foreign investors flocked in, encouraged by his pro-market reforms and anti-corruption measures. He was accused of attending to his private businesses before the business of state. Until October 2009's political deal, Ravalomanana and his party, Tiako-i-Madagasikara, had insisted that he was the sole legitimate President. He stayed in South Africa and Andry Rajoelina's self-proclaimed government sentenced him to four years in gaol for abuse of office for private gain (notably a presidential jet, worth US$60 million). Talks held in Maputo in August 2009 were intended to negotiate an amnesty for him that would have let him return home and possibly stand for election. No deal was reached. His political future depends on how much Rajoelina can maintain domestic support amid foreign disapproval. He, former President Didier Ratsiraka and ex-Premier Albert Zafy could not agree a transitional government after Rajoelina had appointed one without consultation.
    Marc Ravalomanana

    Ahmed Ali Aboul Gheit
    Education: Bachelor's degree in Commerce, AinShams University, 1964. Career: Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 1965 to date. Commentary: Born 1942 in Cairo, Ahmed Aboul Gheit joined the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in 1965, the year after completing his bachelor's degree . In his first overseas assignment was as attaché to the embassy in Cyprus from 1968 to 1972. Others included the Soviet Union (1979-1982) and Italy (1992-1996). The diplomat has been closely involved in his country's relations with the United Nations, with frequent participation in Egypt's mission there. He was Egypt's representative to the UN from 1999 to 2004. After leaving the UN he was made Minister of Foreign Affairs by then-Prime Minister Ahmed Nazif from 11 July 2004 to 6 March 2011.
    Ahmed Ali Aboul Gheit

    El Hachemi Djaaboub
    Biography: Postgraudate studies, Ecole Nationale D'Administration; Director of Hospitals, 1985-90; Official in charge of study and synthesis, Minister of Youth and Sports, 1990-94; Chief of Sttaff, Deputy Minister of National Solidarity, 1994-95; General Secretariat of Government, 1995-97; Minister of Trade and Commerce, 2002-10.
    El Hachemi Djaaboub

    Khalida Toumi
    Biography: Teacher, Mathematics, 1984-91; Founding Member, President, first independent women's association, 1985; Founding member, Vice-Chair, Algerian League of Human Rights; National Advisory Council, 1992-93; MP, Algiers, 1997; Vice-President, National Commission on Education Reform, 2000-01; Minister of Communication and Culture, 2002 to date. Once a tourchbearer of liberal values, now a target for her former friends as a fierce campaigner for the Boutef way and one of the President's inner circle. Toumi was known as an anti-Islamist feminist, and was a familiar face on French television, before being appointed Communications and Culture Minister in 2002. She replaced Mohammed Abbou amidst hopes that, as government spokesperson, she may help to calm Kabylie.
    Khalida Toumi

    Hon Col. Kundi Paihama
    Career: Governor (successively) of Cunene, Benguela, Huila and Luanda provinces; Minister of State Inspection and Control, 1986; Minister of Territorial Administration; intelligence directorate, State Security Minister; Governor, Huila, 1992-?; member, Politbureau, 1996 to date; Minister of Defence, 2002 to date. Commentary: Known as the MPLA's Jonas Savimbi, Paihama is a charismatic orator given to calling and addressing spontaneous mass meetings, he speaks several Angolan languages and is one of few senior MPLA figures who can communicate with the people. From Cunene Province on the Namibian border, he is popular in southern and central Angola which he knows well from his governorships. He loathed, and was loathed by, Savimbi, but Paihama is a controversial character in the MPLA due mainly to his anti-corruption diatribes. He is periodically sent to London to escape the political heat.
    Hon Col. Kundi Paihama

    Joaquim Duarte da Costa David
    Ethnicity: Mbundu Career: Oil engineer, Petrangol (Petrofina affiliate), 1978; Oil engineer, Texaco, 1978-82; Division Chief, hydrocarbon production, Sonangol, 1982-89; Director General, Sonangol 1989-1998; Minister of Finance, 1999-2000; Minister of Industry, 2000 to date. Education: Mineral Science and Engineering, Agostinho Neto University, Luanda, 1978; Oil Management, Tufts University, Boston, United States, 1979; College of Petroleum Studies, Oxford, United Kingdom, 1988
    Joaquim Duarte da Costa David

    Hon. General Francisco Higino Lopes Carneiro
    Career: Brigadier General , Forcas Armadas Populares de Libertacao de Angola; government spokesman, 1994; Leader of MPLA delegation at the Joint Political-Military Comission, 1996; Deputy Territorial Administration Minister 1997-2002; Minister of Public Works, 2002-date; Senior Country Economist, World Bank Washington Country Office - Angola.
    Hon. General Francisco Higino Lopes Carneiro

    Fatou-Danielle Diagne
    Education: Finance and Accounting, Universite de Dakar, Senegal, 1976-77; Small Business Management, Ecole des Cadres du Commerce et des Affaires Economiques, 1977-80; Intensive English Language and Maths course, Georgetown University, Washington DC, USA 1990-91; Master in Development Studies, American University, Washington DC, 1991-93. Career: Loan application analyst, Credit Maritime Department, Banque Nationale de Developpement du Senegal, 1981-82; Officer and Account relationship Manager, Credit Department, Union Senegalaise de Banques, 1982-86; FIDIS Department, African Development Bank (AfDB), 1988-90; Consultant, Africa Department, World Bank, 1993; Finance and Development Officer, Petrodji, 1997-2000; Consultant, Oikocredit International SCOD, 2001-02; Technical Assistant, Banque Rwandaise de Developpement, 2004-05; President, AFAM/AfDB, 2003-04; Minister in charge of Competitiveness and Good Governance, Senegal, 2006-07; Ministerial Advisor to the President on Competitiveness and Good Governance, 2008 to date.
    Fatou-Danielle Diagne

    Dr Albina Faria de Assis Pereira Africano
    Married to Dr Jose Pereira, with 4 children. Career: School teacher, 1968-75; Director, National Laboratory for Chemical Analysis, 1975-83; Chemical Engineer at Fina-Angola, Luanda, 1983-85; Deputy Director of Fina Refinery, Luanda. 1985-91; President, Sonangol Board, 1991-1992; Minister of Petroleum, Dec 1992-1999; Minister of Industry, 1999-2000; Special Advisor to the President for Regional Affairs, 2005 to date. Education: Industrial Institute, Luanda, 1967; BA, Chemical Engineering, Agostinho Neto University, Luanda, 1979-82; Oil Refining Technology, Antwerp, Belgium, 1984; Institute of Petroleum Science, France, 1987; training, Lindsey oil refinery, UK, 1988; College of Petroleum and Energy Studies, Oxford, UK, 1989.
    Dr Albina Faria de Assis Pereira Africano

    Roberto António Victor Francisco De Almeida
    Ethnicity: Mbundu Career: Director General, Foreign Affairs Ministry, 1975; Minister of External Trade, 1976; Coordinator, MPLA Urban Committee, Luanda, 1978-79; Deputy President of National Assembly, 1980; Secretary, MPLA ideology sub-committee, 1982; MPLA representative for Bié Province, National Assembly, 1992; President, National Assembly, 1996 to date. Commentary: A member of the MPLA old guard, Roberto De Almeida has built up a formidable business and political network. With good contacts in Europe, especially in Moscow, he has also developed ties with some French-speaking former activists of Holden Roberto's Frente Nacional de Libertação de Angola (FNLA).
    Roberto António Victor Francisco De Almeida

    General João Baptista de Matos
    Married to Antonia Balbina Duarte, with children Career: Company Commander, 1975; Lieutenant, Battalion Commander, 1975-76; Lieutenant, Sector Commander, 1976-77; Captain, Director of Regional Military Intelligence, 1977-79; Major Regional Commandant, 1979-87; Lieutenant-Colonel, 1987-89; Colonel, 1989-90; Major-General, 1991; Special Forces Commandant, 1991-92; General, FAA Chief of General Staff, 1992-2001. Education: Commandant Course, 1975; Military Intelligence Course, 1976; Masters, Military Sciences, Military Academy, Frunze, Russia, 1983-87.
    General João Baptista de Matos

    Mr Lopo Fortunato Ferreira Do Nascimento
    Married to Maria do Carmo Assis do Nascimento Career: member, Presidential Council, pre-Independence transitional government, Jan-Nov 1975; Prime Minister, 1976-78; Minister of Internal Trade, 1977-78; Minister of Foreign Trade, 1979-82; Minister of Planning, 1982-86; Governor, Huila Province, 1986-91; Minister of Territorial Administration, 1991-92; MPLA Secretary-General, 1993-1999 Commentary: Lopo Do Nascimento, one of the most capable ministers in the government and former leader of its liberal right wing, has argued his case robustly against colleagues and President Jose dos Santos. Popular with MPLA's grassroots, Do Nascimento comfortably won the 1993 party election for Secretary-General,but following this, his relationship with the leadership became uneasy: President Agostinho Neto criticised Do Nascimento for 'bourgeois tendencies' while accepting his talents as an administrator. In 1981 President Dos Santos appointed Do Nascimento Governor of southern, war torn Huila, Cunene and Namibe provinces, with headquarters in Lubango. This removed him from the capital - 'banishment' as MPLA apparatchiks then said - but his redeployment boosted MPLA support in the south and helped decentralise economic power: Do Nascimento introduced economic reforms there while Luanda persisted with state socialism. Wealthy, with holdings in Italian corporations, Do Nascimento has a reputation for consistency and integrity. Fluent in French, English, Kimundu and Portuguese, he is an attractive figure for Western diplomats who have periodically touted him as a future president; not an accolade that has helped his position in the MPLA. In 2008 he won a seat in the parliamentary elections.
    Mr Lopo Fortunato Ferreira Do Nascimento

    Ana Paula Dos Santos
    Married to President Jose Eduardo Dos Santos with two children Career: fashion model; flight attendant, TAAG - Linhas Aereas de Angola Education: National Insitute of Education, Luanda; teachers' training, 1990-94. Commentary: Ana Paula's marriage to President dos Santos in 1991 is blamed by some MPLA supporters for the increasing isolation of the Presidency at Futungo de Belas. Some criticism is just chauvinist sentiment and snobbery; but many Angolans are appalled by the displays of wealth at Fungo, which contrasts sharply with the poverty and suffering caused by the war. A diplomat described the President and first lady as: 'a handsome couple, elegantly and expensively dressed, looking for all the world as though they're living in southern California.' In 1997 Ana Paula undiplomatically announced that her five-year-old son would enrol at the Portuguese school in Luanda because of the 'bad quality' of state education (for which many hold her husband responsible). She has also tried to make her presence felt in administrative matters; a move which has irritated the political mainstream. Also under fire are her business interests, particularly diamonds.
    Ana Paula Dos Santos

    Isabel Dos Santos
    Commentary: Isabel dos Santos is the eldest daughter of President José Eduardo dos Santos. A millionaire businesswoman, she is married to another millionaire, Sindika Dokolo, 37, who is originally from Congo-Kinshasa. With interests in oil and diamonds, Isabel dos Santos also owns shares (with the Portuguese businessman Américo Amorim) in an Angolan cement company Ciminvest, which in turn owns 49% of Nova Cimangola; the state owns 40.2%, the Banco Africano de Investimentos 9.52% and smaller shareholders the rest. Dokolo sits on the company's board.
    Isabel Dos Santos

    Colonel Almerindo Jaka Jamba (Jaka Jamba)
    Career: Joined UNITA, 1973; UNITA delegate, Luso, Angola, 1974; UNITA nominee for Information Minister, Transitional government, January 1975; Dean of Huambo University, October 1975; Director of Education Services, Bie; UNITA Secretary for Information; Secretary for Foreign Affairs, 1979; UNITA Secretary for Culture, 1990-?; Permanent Representative to UNESCO, 2005 to date.
    Colonel Almerindo Jaka Jamba (Jaka Jamba)

    Sousa Jamba
    Career: Correspondent for The Spectator and Portuguese newspapers and journals; his first novels received much critical acclaim. Education: BA, Media Studies, Westminster University, London, United Kingdom, 1988-91.
    Sousa Jamba

    Jose Leitao da Costa e Silva
    Career: Director, Information Ministers's Office, 1976; General Manager, EPTEL (State Telecommunications), 1976-81; Deputy Director, President's Office, 1984-88; chef de cabinet, MPLA President's Office, 1986-88; Secretary for Legal Affairs, President's Office, 1983-88; Secretary of State, Minister's Council, 1988-92; Minister in the Office of the President, 1992-2004; Director, Grupo Gema; 2005 to date. Education: Liceu Salvador Correia, Luanda, 1961-69; Legal Studies, Lisbon, Portugal, 1971-75; BA, Law, Lisbon University, 1982. Commentary: Jose Leitao has grown more influential. He cuts a rather forbidding figure, chomping on a Cuban cigar and exuding political might. An MPLA loyalist, he served his political apprenticeship in information and communications. Since the mid-80s he has worked closely with President Jose Eduardo dos Santos.
    Jose Leitao da Costa e Silva

    Major General Joao Manuel Goncalves Lourenço
    Married to Aga Afonso Dias with five children. Education: BA, History, Soviet Union, 1978-82; speaks Portuguese, Russian, Spanish and English Career: Member, MPLA Central Committee, 1985 to date; Governor, Moxico and Benguela provinces, 1983-89; Chief, Directorate of National Policy (promoted to rank of Major General), 1989; Member, MPLA Political Bureau, 1990 to date; MPLA Information Secretary and leader of MPLA caucus in the National Assembly, 1992-; Secretary General of the MPLA.
    Major General Joao Manuel Goncalves Lourenço

    General Antonio Jose Maria
    Married Maria Victoria da Silva Izata, 1975, with one child. Career: Cadet, 1973; Military Instructor, Luanda, 1973; Second Lieutenant, 1973; Second Company Commandant, 1973-75; Member, Movimento das Forcas Armadas, 1974; Commander, Quibala Front, 1975; Captain, 1976; FAPLA Commander, Sao Tome e Principe, 1978; Secretary to the President for Defence and Security, 1978; Chief, Military Counter-Intelligence, 1982; Member, Provincial Assembly, Huambo, 1982-92; Colonel, 1985; General, FAPLA, 1991; Deputy Chief of General Staff (Doctrine and Education) 1992-; Chief of Military Intelligence.
    General Antonio Jose Maria

    Alhaji Samuel Tamba Sam-Sumana
    Married to Khadija Sam-Sumana with three children. Education: Jaiama Secondary School, Kono District, Sierra Leone; Ahamadiya Secondary School, Freetown, Sierra Leone; BSc Management Information Systems, Metropolitan State University, Minnesota, USA; Diploma, Diamond Rough Grading, Sorting, and Polishing, American Institution of Diamond Cutting and Polishing, Florida, USA; Diploma, Computer Network Support Specialist, Knollwood Computer and Business School, Minnesota, USA. Career: System Officer, Prudential Financial Group, USA; Network Support System Manager, Allina Health Services, USA; Network Support System Manager, Seagate Technologies, USA; Managing Director, United Diamond Mining Company, Kodu District, Sierra Leone; Chief Executive Officer, Aries Rehabilitation Construction and Supplies SL Ltd, Sierra Leone; Vice President of Sierra Leone, 2007-present.
    Alhaji Samuel Tamba Sam-Sumana

    David Omashola Carew
    Education: Sierra Leone Grammar School; BSc Economics, University of Sierra Leone, 1976-79. Career: Graduate Accountant, 1979-82: Chartered Accountant, 1982-86, KPMG- Nigeria; Various promotions from Assistant Manager to Senior Manager, KPMG-Sierra Leone, 1986-88; Partner, KMPG-Sierra Leone, 1989-2007; Partner, KMPG-Gambia, 1991-2007; Minister of Finance and Development, 2007-09: Minister of Trade and Industry, 2009-date: Government of Sierra Leone.
    David Omashola Carew

    Zainab Hawa Bangura
    Married to Sheki Bangura with one son. Education: BSc Political Science and History, Fourah Bay College, University of Sierra Leone, Sierra Leone, 1983. Career: Founder, Campaign for Good Governance; Founder and Leader, Movement for Change Political Party, 2002; Chief of Civil Affairs, United Nations Mission, Liberia, 2005-07; Minister of Foreign Affairs, Government of Sierra Leone, 2007-present.
    Zainab Hawa Bangura

    Ibrahim Ben Kargbo
    Education: BA Education, Fourah Bay College, University of Sierra Leone, 1969; Diploma in Journalism, John New Homes School of Journalism, 1979. Career: Various teaching positions, St. Andrew's Secondary School, 1969-73; Headteacher, Schlenker Secondary School, 1973-79; Assistant Editor, The Tablet, 1979-81; Co-Editor, The Flash Newspaper, 1981-82; Managing Editor, New Citizen Newspaper, 1982-2007; Director, National Diamond Mining Company; MP representing the Press, Sierra Leone, 1985-90; President of Sierra Leone Association of Journalists, 2004-07; Minister of Information and Communication, Government of Sierra Leone, 2007-present.
    Ibrahim Ben Kargbo

    Mr. Samira Kamara
    Education: BSc Economics, University of Sierra Leone, Sierra Leone; MA Economics, PhD Economics, University College of North Wales, Bangor, Wales, UK. Career: Chief Programme Officer, Economic Affairs Division, Commonweatlth Secretariat, UK; Governor, Bank of Sierra Leone, 2008-09; Minister of Finance annd Economic Development, Governement of Sierra Leone, 2009-present.
    Mr. Samira Kamara

    Christopher J Toe
    Education: Economics, University of Liberia; Master's degree, PhD, Texas University. Biography: Electronic Data Processing Auditor, Ministry of Finance, Liberia, 1977; Associate Professor, Texas Tech University, Lubbock, Texas, USA, 1990-93; Various teaching posts, Strayer University, USA, 1993-2006; Assistant Professor of Economics and Management, University of Liberia, 1985-86; Minister of Agriculture, 2006-09. Formerly one of the star ministers in President Johnson-Sirleaf's first cabinet, Toe was was sacked, or had his resignation accepted in 2009. He was controversially replaced by Florence Chenoweth, Minister of Agriculture under Tolbert, who implemented hikes in rice prices that led to riots in 1979.
    Christopher J Toe

    Augustine Kpehe Ngafuan
    Career: Director, Bureau of Budgets, 2006-08; Minister of Finance, 2008 to date. Commentary: In his capacity as Liberia's Minister of Finance, Augustine Ngafuan has said that Liberia's growth plans have been held back by huge losses in the rubber trade in 2009 and 2010. In 2007, as Budget Director General, he was one of the team, along with then Finance Minister Antoinette Sayeh and Minister in the Presidency Morris Saytumah, coordinating the government's defence in the Charles Bryant corruption case.
    Augustine Kpehe Ngafuan

    Olubanke King-Akerele
    Education: BA, Economics, Brandeis University, USA, 1967; Master's, Economics and Human Resources, Northwestern University, USA. Biography: Senior Planning Officer, Ministry of Planning and Economic Affairs, 1968-69 and 1975-80; Deputy Director, National Social Security and Welfare Corporation, 1975-80; Deputy Director, United Nations Development Fund for Women, 1982-89; Deputy Resident Representative, UNDP Senegal, 1989-91; UNDP Resident Representative and Resident Coordinator for UN Operational Activities in Mauritius and Seychelles, 1991-94; Managing Director, Country Strategy and Programme Development Division, UNIDO, 1994-96; Chief, East and Central Africa Division, Regional Bureau for Africa, UNDP, 1996-97; UNDP supported sabbatical, 1998; Resident Representative and Coordinator of the United Nations System Operational Activities for Development in Zambia, UNDP, 1998-03; Minister of Commerce and Industry, 2006-07; Minister of Foreign Affairs, 2007 to date. Commentary: The granddaughter of former President of Liberia, Charles D.B. King, Olubanke King-Akerele is one of the star ministers in Johnson-Sirleaf's cabinet. She boosted her credentials in 2006 after she was credited with having forced down the price of rice, Liberia's staple food.
    Olubanke King-Akerele

    Philip A. Z. Banks
    Career: Director of Legal and Legal Advisor Affairs, Constitution Commission, 1981-83; Dean, Arthur Grimes School of Law, University of Liberia, 1983-84; Minister of Justice, Interim Government of National Unity, 1990-94; Consultant, Government Reform Commission; Liberian Law Report, 1999-2003; Minister of Justice 2007-09. Commentary: Banks was dismissed from government in 2009 after he was said to have soft-pedalled the corruption trial of Edwin Snowe, the former boss of the Liberian Petroleum Refining Company and a member of the House. He had also been implicated in an earlier scandal, surfacing after a series of emails, purporting to have been extracted from the account of Willis Knuckles, a confidant to the President and a disgraced former Public Works Minister, forced to resign in 2007 following a sex scandal (AC Vol 48 No 6). The email exchanges show discussions of kickbacks and sweeteners for a deal that would allow the Liberian International Shipping and Corporate Registry (LISCR) to extend its management of the national Maritime Registry. Banks was implicated along with Johnson-Sirleaf's brother in law and Legal and Security Advisor, Estrada Bernard and the Commissioner of the Bureau of Maritime Affairs, Binyah Kesselly.
    Philip A. Z. Banks

    Samuel Kofi Woods
    Education: BSc, Economics and Management, University of Liberia, 1987; Certificate, International Law and Human Rights Theory, Columbia, 1994; LLB, University of Liberia, 1996; Post-Graduate Diploma, International Laws and Organizations for Development, Institute of Social Studies, Netherlands, 1999; LLM, Public International Law, University of Leiden, Netherlands, 2000. Career: Executive Director, Monrovia YMCA, 1989; Founding National Director, Catholic Justice and Peace Commission, Liberia, 1991-98; Founder and Regional Representative, Foundation for International Dignity (FIND), 2002 to date; Minister of Labour, 2006-09; Minister of Works, 2009 to date. Commentary: A decorated human rights campaigner, Samuel Kofi Woods has been one of the leaders of the recovery in Liberia and Sierra Leone following the devastation of the Liberian Civil War. He is immensly popular in Liberia and is known for his integrity. George Weah tried to recturit him as his running mate for the 2005 presidential elections but he refused, preferring to work in civil society. He accepted a post in President Johnson-Sirleaf's cabinet in 2006 and his appointment was greeted with cheers.
    Samuel Kofi Woods

    Dr Raymond William Baker
    Education: Ripon College, BA, 1964, French and Art History; Harvard University, MA, 1967; Harvard University PhD, 1972.
    Dr Raymond William Baker

    Dr. Jendayi Frazer
    Education: BA Political Science and African and Afro-American Studies, 1985; MA International Policy Studies, 1985, MA International Development Education, Stanford University, 1989; PhD Political Science, Stanford University, 1994: Stanford University, USA. Career: Research Associate and Lecturer, Institute for Development Studies, University of Nairobi, Nairobi, Kenya, 1989-90; Visiting Fellow, Center for International Security and Arms Control, Stanford University, California, USA, 1991-93; Assistant Professor, Graduate School of International Studies, 1993-95; Editor, Africa Today Journal, 1993-96: University of Denver, Denver, USA; Assistant Professor of Public Policy, Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, 1995-2002; Political-Military Planner, Joint Chiefs of Staff, Department of Defence, Washington, 1998-99; Director of African Affairs, National Security Council, Washington, 1999; Special Assistant to the President and Senior Director for African Affairs, National Security Council, Washington, 2001-05; United States Ambassador to South Africa, U.S. Embassy, Pretoria, South Africa, 2004-05; Board Member, Africa Development Foundation, Washington, 2005-09; Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs, Department of State, Washington, 2005-09.
    Dr. Jendayi Frazer

    Dr. Condoleezza Rice
    Education: BA cum laude Political Science, University of Denver, 1974; MA, University of Notre Dame, 1975; PhD, Graduate School of International Studies, University of Denver, 1981. Career: Intern in the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, 1977; Director, Senior Director of Soviet and east European affairs at the National Security Council, Special Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs, 1989-1991; Provost of Stanford University; Professor of Political Science, Stanford; Senior fellow, Institute for International Studies. Fellow, Hoover Institution; Fellow; American Academy of Arts and Sciences, 1991-1999; Special Assistant to the director of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, 1996; Federal Advisory committee on gender-integrated training in the military, 1997; US national security adviser, 2000-2004; US Secretary of State, 2005-2009.
    Dr. Condoleezza Rice

    Mr Robert Bruce Zoellick
    Education: Swarthmore College: B.A.Harvard University: M.P.P; J.D.
    Mr Robert Bruce Zoellick

    Bill Clinton (Born: William Jefferson Blythe III)
    Education: BSc Foreign Service, Georgetown University,1968; Law degree, Yale University, 1973.
    Bill Clinton (Born: William Jefferson Blythe III)

    Mr Richard Bruce Cheney ('Dick Cheney')
    Married to Lynne Cheney with 2 children Career: Special assistant to the Director of Office of Economic Opportunity (OEO) 1969-70; White House staff assistant 1971; Assistant director, Cost of Living Council 1971-73; Vice-President, Bradley, Woods & Co. 1973-74; Deputy Assistant to President Gerald Ford 1974-75; White House Chief of Staff 1975-77; Elected as a Republican to the Ninety-sixth and to the five succeeding Congresses,1979-89; Minority whip (One Hundred First Congress); Secretary of Defense 1989-93; Senior fellow, American Enterprise Institute 1993-95; chairman and chief executive office of the Halliburton Company 1995-2000; 46th Vice-President of the United States, 2001-09.
    Mr Richard Bruce Cheney ('Dick Cheney')

    Dr Jeffrey David Sachs
    Married to Sonia Ehrlich Sachs with 3 children Education: BA, summa cum laude, Harvard College, 1976; MA, Harvard University, 1978; PhD, Harvard University, 198. Career: Various professorships, Harvard University, 1980-95; Director of the Harvard Institute for International Development, 1995-99; Director of the Center for International Development, Harvard, 1999-2002; Director of Columbia University's Earth Institute as well as Professor of Sustainable Development and of Health Policy and Management, Columbia University, 2002 to date.
    Dr Jeffrey David Sachs

    Warren Buffet
    Education: BS in Economics, University of Nebraska, 1950; MS in Economics, Columbia University, 1951; Career: Investment Salesman, Buffett-Falk& Co, Omaha, 1951-54; Securities Analyst, Graham-Newman Corp, New York, 1954-56; General Partner, Buffett Partnership, Ltd, 1956-69; Chairman and CEO, Berkshire Hathaway Inc, Omaha, 1970 to date.
    Warren Buffet

    Andrew Young
    Education: Dillard University; Howard University pre-medicine B.S, 1951; Hartford Theological Seminary B.D, 1955.
    Andrew Young

    President Barack Hussein Obama
    Married to Michelle Obama with 2 children Education: returned from Indonesia to Hawaii, winning a scholarship to Punahou, a prestigious prep school in Honalulu, 1971; Occidental College, Los Angeles, 1979-1982; Harvard Law School, 1988-91; Appointed the first African American President of the Harvard Law Review, Feb 1990; Career: Begins working at Davis, Miner, Barnhill and Gallard, 1992; Publishes 'Dreams from My Father', 1995; Wins the Democratic nomination for the Illinois State Senate, 1996; elected to the US Senate, 2004; announces candidacy for Presidency of the US, Feb 2007; Becomes the first African American President of the United States, Nov 5th 2008
    President Barack Hussein Obama

    Lulama Xingwana (Lulu)
    Biography: Member, FEDSWA, 1981-91; Tutor, Learn and Teach, South Africa, 1985-87; Tutor, Classes for Domestic Workers, South Africa, 1985-86; Head of Development, ANCWL, 1991-94; Chairperson, National Assembly Portfolio Committee: Sports and Recreation, 1994-99; Member, National Assembly Portfolio Committee: Environmental Affairs and Tourism, 1996-04; Member, Provincial Executive Council, ANC, 1998-01; Chairperson, Malibongwe Rural Development Project for Women, 1998-00; Member, National Assembly Portfolio Committee: Defence, 1999-0; Chairperson, Parliamentary Women's Caucus, 1999-04; Chairperson, Joint Monitoring Committee: Improvement of Quality of Life and Status of Women, 2002-04; Deputy Minister, Department of Minerals and Energy, 2004-06; Minister, Agriculture and Land Affairs, 2006-09; Minister of Arts and Culture, 2009 to date Commentary: Formerly Minister of Agriculture, Lulu Xingwana was dropped from her post by Jacob Zuma after the ANC's sweeping election victory on 22nd April 2009. Whilst Minister of Agriculture she called for land expropriation. She was succeded as Minister of Agriculture by Tina Joeman-Pettersson, a former teacher from the Northern Cape. She was Minister of Arts and Culture from 2009 until October 2010 (succeeded by Paul Mashatile) when she was appointed Minister for Women, Children and People with Disabilities.
    Lulama Xingwana (Lulu)

    Ivy Matsepe-Casaburri
    Commentary: When Communications Minister, Ivy Matsepe Casaburri awarded South Africa's third cellular telephone licence to the Saudi and US-backed Cell C consortium in a move seen as paving the way for Mbeki's trade negotiations in 2001. She was a close ally of Mbeki and a Minister of Communications in his cabinet from 1999 until her death in 2009.
    Ivy Matsepe-Casaburri

    Barbara Anne Hogan
    Biography: Chairperson, portfolio committee on Finance, 1999-04; Minister of Health, 2008-09; Minister of Public Enterprise, 2009-2010. Commentary: As Minister Public Enterprises (she was appointed after having won credit for integrating the state-owned companies into industrial poliicy as Chairwoman of parliament's Finance Committee) Hogan oversaw the state-owned companies which many in the ANC regarded as lucrative sources of patronage for whoever is in control of the governing party. Many of Zuma’s allies wanted a public enterprise minister whom they could ‘trust’ to award lucrative state tenders and positions to them as ‘rewards’ for supporting Zuma. Her re-appointment as Minister of Public Enterprises initally overcame rumours that she was a 'dead minister walking', after she spoke out against the government's denial of a visa for the Dalai Lama in April 2009, however, she lost her post in Zuma's November 2010 cabinet re-shuffle.
    Barbara Anne Hogan

    Sicelo Shiceka
    Education: Masters, Political Economy, University of Free State; Diploma, Economic studies, Wharton Business School, USA; Diploma, Labour Relations, University of the Witwatersrands Biography: Branch Chairman, Congress of South African Students, 1980; Organiser, Paper, Printing, Wood and Allied Workers Union, 1989; Provincial Secretary, PPWAWU, 1990; Deputy Chair, Johannesburg branch, South African Community Party, 1991; Provincial Secretary, COSATU, 1992; Gauteng Member, MEC for Development Planning and Local Government, 1994-99; Political Committee, ANC NEC, 2007; Minister of Provincial and Local Government, 2008-09; Minister for Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs, 2009 to date Commentary: A close ally of President Zuma, Sicelo Shiceka was one of the few ministers to sign Zuma's July 2010 'performance agreements'. These contracts were largely unpopular with other cabinet members, who found them vaguely worded. However, a senior official said that those who signed these contacts knew that Zuma's friends would face no sanction in the event that they failed to deliver.
    Sicelo Shiceka

    Governor Ibrahim Idris
    Education: Holy Trinity Primary School, Anambra State, 1954-62; United Native Authority Primary School, 1962-63; King’s Commercial College, Buguma, 1964. Career: Founder, Ibro Trading Company, 1960s; established Ibrahim Furniture Factory, 1970; established the Ibro Hotel, 1970; Governor, Kogi State, 2003 to date. Commentary: Before he became Governor of Kogi state in October 2003, Idris was already a successful businessman, with a furniture factory and a three star Ibro Hotel in Abuja. This helped in his contest against Prince Abubakar Audu, whose bid to win reelection he defeated. Idris’s own bid for reelection ran into trouble when a Court of Appeal decision threw out the 2007 election results, in which he had been declared the winner. The court ruled that the victory had violated sections of the 2006 Electoral Act. The victory had been disputed by Audu, who also claimed Idris had forged the academic certificate he used to qualify himself for the 2007 elections. According to Audu, Idris had not attended Kings Commercial College Buguma, Rivers State, as claimed. After a March 2008 rerun, Idris was reinstated as Governor.
    Governor Ibrahim Idris

    Governor Olusegun Adebayo Oni (Segun Oni)
    Education: Methodist School, Ilogbe and Ifaki, 1959-64; Chemical Engineering, Ife, 1976-79; National Youth Service, National Steel Development Authority, Ajaokuta, 1979-80. Career: Chemical Engineer II, Planning Division, 1981-87; Treasurer, Lagos State Chapter of the Nigerian Society of Chemical Engineers, 1986-88; Technical Support Manager, Rank Xerox Nigeria Ltd, 1987-92; Regional Sales Manager, Western Region, Rank Xerox Nigeria Ltd, 1992; Customer Service Operations Manager, Kenya, Rank Xerox, 1992-1997; General Manager, Systems Business, 1997; Governor, Ekiti State, 2007-08 and 2009 to date. Commentary: In 2008, Oni lost his seat as Ekiti State Governor when an appeals court asked for a rerun. The rerun, held in 2009, was marred by allegations that the election official, Mrs Ayoka Acdebayo, had been bribed to declare results she did not believe in. Oni was sworn in again in 2009. After a judgement from the Court of Appeal, he was removed from office and Kayode Fayemi was sworn in as the Governor of Ekiti State, having fought for four years in the courts to win the governorship stolen from him by Oni.
    Governor Olusegun Adebayo Oni (Segun Oni)

    Dr Kayode Fayemi
    Education: West African School Certificate, Christ’s School, Ado Ekiti, 1980; Higher School Certificate, Federal School of Arts and Science, Ondo, 1980-82; BA, University of Lagos, 1982-85; International Relations, University of Ife, Ile-Ife, 1987; PhD, War Studies, King’s College, London, 1993. Career: Lecturer, Nigeria Police Training Centre, Sokoto, 1985-86; Research Officer, Development and Management Consultants, Ikeja, 1989; Research Officer, African Research and Information Bureau, London, 1991-93; Strategy Development Advisor, Deptford City Challenge, London, 1993-95; Secretary General, Media Empowerment for Africa, 1995-97; Director, Centre for Democracy and Government, 1997-06; challenger, election results, Ekiti State, 2007 to 2010. Governor, Ekiti State, October 2010 to 2014. He conceded defeat to the candidate of the People's Democratic Party (PDP), Ayo Fayose, after the gubernatorial elections in June 2014. Commentary: Fayemi contested the Ekiti State elections for governor against Oni in 2007 and 2009. An appeal he lodged against Olusegun Oni’s 2007 victory resulted in a rerun election attended by controversy and violence. In May 2009, it was announced Fayemi had lost the rerun and had to go back to the courts but the appeals court overturned the decision and Fayemi was sworn in as Governor of Ekiti State in October 2010, after having fought for four years in the courts to win the governorship stolen from him by the PDP’s Segun Oni. Fayemi is a former Director of the Centre for Democracy and Development, a research and training institution. He founded and ran the underground Radio Kudirat radio transmissions that irked General Abacha while he was dictator. Radio Kudirat was funded by and named after Kudirat Abiola, wife of Moshood Abiola who Abacha imprisoned for stating he won annulled presidential elections. Dr Fayemi spoke to Africa Confidential about the election crisis in Ekiti State in May 2009.
    Dr Kayode Fayemi

    Celestine Omehia
    Commentary: Was briefly the fourteenth governor of Rivers State until a Supreme Court ruling decided otherwise. He was the chosen candidate of Peter Odili, State Governor between 1999 and 2007. The legal challenge to his May 2007 victory was brought by his cousin Rotimi Amaechi. Omehia viewed Amaechi’s suit as treachery and this perception only increased when Amaechi won the suit and was named automatic winner of the election Omehia thought he had won.
    Celestine Omehia

    Governor Rotimi Chibuike Amaechi
    Education: St Theresa's Primary School, Ubima, 1976; Okolobiri School, 1982; University of Port Harcourt, 1987. Career: Public Relations Officer, Pamo Clinics and Hospitals Limited, Port Harcourt, 1988; Special Assistant to Peter Odili, 1992; Speaker of Rivers State House of Assembly, 1999-2007; Governor of Rivers State, 2007 to date. Commentary: Amaechi had the unusual fortune of being named governor by a court ruling on elections he had not participated in. He had brought suit over the decision of his party, the People's Democratic Party (PDP), to make Celestine Omehia their candidate for governor. Omehia had been the favored candidate of Odili, governor for the previous eight years. Amaechi had also been close to Odili, serving first as his personal assistant and then as the speaker of the State House of Assembly at Odili’s behest. Odili and Omehia viewed Amaechi’s suit as treachery and this perception only increased when Amaechi won the suit and was named automatic winner of the election Omehia thought he had won. Amaechi had the support of militants during his challenge but split with them after he was named governor, refusing payments or jobs on state payroll. Amaechi has not been free from allegations of corruption.
    Governor Rotimi Chibuike Amaechi

    Umaru Musa Yar'Adua
    Education: Rafukka Primary School, 1958-62; Dutsinma Boarding Primary School, 1962-65; Government College, Keffi, 1965-69; Barewa College, 1969-71; BSc, Chemistry, Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, 1972-75; MSc, Analytical Chemistry, 1978. Career: Holy Child College, Lagos, 1975-76; Lecturer, College of Arts, Science and Technology, Kano State, 1976-79; Lecturer, College of Art Science, 1979-83; General Manager, Samba Farms Ltd, Funtua, 1983-89; elected member of the Constituent Assembly representing Katsina, 1988; Director, Hamada Holdings, 1983-99; Director, Lodigiani Nigeria Ltd, 1987-99; Madara Ltd, Jos, 1987-99; Governor, Katsina State 1999-07; President of Nigeria, 2007-10. Commentary: Yar'Adua was a devout Muslim who hailed from an important political family. His father was a Minister in the First Republic and his brother, General Shehu Musa Yar’Adua, was Olusegun Obasanjo's deputy during the military regime of 1976-79. Backed as the People's Democratic Party (PDP) presidential candidate by Obasanjo, Yar'Adua won the 2007 presidential elections with 70 % of the vote, amid claims of fraud and vote rigging. Yar'Adua himself was not widely considered responsible, and he was commended for being the first leader to openly declare his assets on assuming office. Much of Yar'Adua's presidency was dominated by his ill health, culminating in November 2009, when he flew to Saudi Arabia to be treated for a heart condition. In February 2010, after a three-month absence, the Nigerian senate appointed Yar'Adua's deputy, Goodluck Jonathan, Acting President. Yar'Adua flew back to Abuja two weeks later, but never recovered. He died on 5th May 2010 at the Aso Rock presidential villa.
    Umaru Musa Yar'Adua

    General Olusegun Aremu Okikiola Matthew Obasanjo
    Education: Baptist Boys High School, Abeokuta; Mons Officers Cadet School, Aldershot, United Kingdom; Royal College of Military Engineering, Chatham, UK; School of Survey, Newbury, UK. Career: Enlisted in the Nigerian Army, 1958; Commissioned Second Lieutenant, 1959; promoted to Lieutenant 1960; served in the Nigerian contingent of the United Nations Force in Congo (DRC); joined the engineering unit and became its Commander in 1963; promoted to Captain in 1963; promoted to Major, 1964; promoted to Lieutenant-Colonel,1967; promoted to Colonel, 1969; promoted to Brigadier, 1972; promoted to Lieutenant-General, 1976; Head of State and Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces, 1976-79; voluntarily handed over power to civilians, 1979; retired from the army and from politics, 1979; jailed by Sani Abacha, 1995; released by General Abdulsalami Abubakar, 1998; elected Head of a civilian government, 1999; re-elected, 2003-07; appointed Special Envoy to the Great Lakes region by United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, December 2008. Commentary: The controversy attending Obasanjo’s last months in office continued post presidency, after a fiercely resisted bid for a third term in office. His life as a private citizen has been full of scandal. He was investigated for establishing his own power generation scheme, which cost the Nigerian treasury almost US$13 billion; a book by an ex-wife alleged serial physical and verbal abuse and philandering; and in divorce proceedings, his son Gbenga Obasanjo alleged that his wife Mojisola had slept with his father for contracts from the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC). Obasanjo has also been in messy disputes with old political allies and friends. The most visible of these was with Chief Tony Anenih against whom Obasanjo fought for control of the ruling party after leaving office. He won the battle but lost the war: Anenih became Chairman of the Nigeria Ports Authority (NPA) under the Umaru Musa Yar’Adua administration, while Obasanjo considers his next move.
    General Olusegun Aremu Okikiola Matthew Obasanjo

    James Onanefe Ibori
    Married to Theresa Nkoyo with three daughters Education: Oghareki Grammar School; University of Benin. Career: Mobil Oil Nigeria Limited; Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation; Consultant, public policy, Federal Government, 1994-97; Governor, Delta State, 1999-07. Commentary: In 2007, Ibori was charged with 103 counts of money laundering and corruption (He bought property worth £5 mn. in Britain, including a London flat for Okoronkwo, a country retreat in Dorset and a £275,000 armoured Maybach-Mercedes limousine, but his salary while in office from 1999-2007 was only £12,000 a year). He came under investigation only when he tried to buy a £10 mn. Challenger jet from Canadian-based Bombardier Inc.Similar charges against him in the United Kingdom were initially dismissed after the Nigerian Attorney General filed a petition for them to be dropped. The federal court in Asaba dismissed 170 charges of corruption against him in December 2009, however, the Dubai Court of Cassation ruled that there were no grounds to block his extradition to the UK in December 2010 and he now faces extradition.
    James Onanefe Ibori

    Michael Kaase Aondoakaa
    Education: Maiduguri University, 1985 Career: Junior Partner, J.Tine Tur and Co Chambers, Gvoko, 1987-89; Principal Partner, M.K. Aondoakaa and Co, Makurdi; Attorney General and Minister of Justice, 2007-10. Commentary: The second most remarkable detail about Michael Aondoakaa's time as Attorney General is that most efforts to prosecute Nigerians for corruption came from jurisdictions abroad. The first is that he tried to thwart them all. In August 2007, he wrote to a British court asking them not to prosecute former Delta State Governor James Ibori for money laundering (the letter was used to unfreeze Ibori's accounts). In September 2007, he asked a French judge not to charge former Oil Minister Dan Etete with corruption. He denied a June 2009 Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty request from Britain to investigate three former governors (Ibori, Bola Ahmed Tinubu and Obong Victor Attah), who were suspected of a US$38 million fraud. Aondoakaa was born in Benue on 12 June 1962 and graduated from the Maiduguri University in law in 1985. He was called to the Bar in 1986. In 1993 he opened his own firm, M. K. Aondoakaa and Company. He was recruited in 2007 (at Ibori's instigation) as President Umaru Musa Yar'Adua's Attorney General. Aondoakaa's appointment was controversial. He was behind the sacking of Nuhu Ribadu, the effective former head of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC). He gutted the Uwais electoral reform white paper, removing the crucial point that the head of the Independent Electoral Commission should be independent and not picked by the President. And he has refused to release funds for a task force panel set up to investigate the Nigerian end of a $190 mn. bribery scandal involving United States oil services giant Halliburton. July 2009's deadly militant attack on an Atlas Cove oil depot occurred after Yar'Adua had ordered Aondoakaa to release Henry Okah , leader of the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND). Aondoakaa left for São Tomé e Príncipe without releasing Okah. Suspecting a ruse, MEND attacked the depot, killing nine navy personnel and civilians. Aondoakaa hurried back and ordered his release. Aondoakaa was removed from his position as Justice Minister by acting President Goodluck Jonathan in February 2010.
    Michael Kaase Aondoakaa

    Sir Peter Odili
    Commentary: Odili is arguably the most corrupt governor in Nigerian history, Africa Confidential caused a storm when it revealed that he had budgeted more for his office expenses than education in the state. He attempted to run for President in 2007, and was a popular choice amongst the rank and file of the People's Democratic Party (PDP), but Olusegun Obasanjo favoured Umaru Musa Yar'Adua, and used an Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) report to discredit Odili. The Governorship of Rivers State comes with vast personal resources and as consequence state politics can be fierce. The main rivalry in the 2011 elections is within the PDP, between the incumbent Rotimi Chibuike Amaechi and the Aiya group, led by Odili. Amaechi has asserted his control over the PDP but the Odili faction is backed by his vast personal wealth.
    Sir Peter Odili

    President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan
    Education: St Stephen’s Primary School, Otuoke, 1961-65; St Michael’s Primary School, Oloibiri, 1966-69; Mater Dei High School, Imiringi, 1971-75; BSc, Zoology, University of Port Harcourt, 1977-81; MSc, Hydrobiology, University of Port Harcourt, 1983-84; PhD, Zoology, University of Port Harcourt, 1987-95. Career: Preventive Officer, Department of Customs and Exise, 1975-77; Science Inspector, Education, Rivers State Ministry of Education, Port Harcourt, 1982-83; Lecturer, Department of Biology, Rivers State College of Education, Port Harcourt, 1983-93; Department of Environment Protection, Oil Mineral Producing Areas Development Commission (OMPADEC), 1993-98; Deputy Governor, Bayelsa State, 1999-2005; Governor, Bayelsa State, 2005-2007; Vice-President, Nigeria, 2007 to date, Acting President, Nigeria, February 2010 to date. Commentary: Jonathan’s spectacular political ascent, from Deputy Governor to Governor to Vice-President (all within two years), began when then Governor Diepreye Alamieyeseigha was impeached for violating money laundering codes. Because Jonathan is Ijaw, like most of the militant groups in the Niger Delta, it was believed his selection as Vice-President would reduce attacks by militants. But on 18 May 2007, militants attacked his country home, killing two policemen. Jonathan was not there at the time. In February 2010, Nigeria's National Assembly promoted Jonathan from Vice-President to Acting President, suspending President Umaru Yar’Adua, who had been attempting to rule from a hospital ward in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, since November 2009. Jonathan was sworn in as Head of State on 6 May 2010, following the death of President Yar'Adua in Abuja. He won the PDP presidential nomination of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) on 14 January with an unexpected 77% of the votes. Jonathan, the insiders quickly learned, had promised all first-term state governors that they would have the PDP nomination for their second terms in return for their support of his presidential nomination. All 26 duly obliged and Jonathan’s nomination was secure. The betting is that Jonathan as the PDP candidate is on course to win the presidency in April. Unlike Ghana, incumbents in Nigeria do not lose elections. After Buhari’s convincing campaign in the North, the parties will now focus on developing much stronger alliances there ahead of the presidential vote. Goodluck Jonathan has yet to persuade Nigeria that he is a national rather than a Niger Delta leader. Doing that will be harder than winning the primaries.
    President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan

    Chief Diepreye Solomon Peter Alamieyeseigha (DSP)
    Career: Nigerian Air Force, 1974-92; Governor, Bayelsa State,1999-05; Impeached, Bayelsa State Assembly, December 2005. Commentary: In July 2007, after a protracted trial, Alamieyeseigha was convicted of stealing Bayelsa State funds. He was released soon afterward due to a lenient sentence and time already spent in detention. Before his conviction, Alamieyeseigha had already made a name for himself. Arrested in London in November 2005 on money laundering charges, he was granted bail on condition that he remained in the United Kingdom. Violating the terms, he left the UK dressed, by many accounts, as a woman. His return to cheering supporters was testament to his still considerable support in the state. Alamieyeseigha perfected many of the methods of intimidation of opponents and recruitment of police and youth organisations to act as foot soldiers at election time, techniques perpetuated by his successor, Chief Timipre Sylva
    Chief Diepreye Solomon Peter Alamieyeseigha (DSP)

    Chief Chris Uba
    Commentary: In 2003, Uba’s political leverage was such that he could openly brag that he had rigged every election in the state, including that of Governor Chris Ngige. Ngige, he said, had agreed to hand him de facto control of the government, but reneged on the deal. Uba kidnapped him, forced him to ‘resign’ at gunpoint and attacked and destroyed part of Government House. Uba denied any direct involvement in the violence and claimed that all he did was implement the terms of his written contract with the Governor. It entitled him to ‘exact vengeance in such manner adjudged by him as fitting and adequate’, should the Governor fail to hand over control. Challenged in a September 2004 meeting that he ran the state as personal property, Uba replied, “I do not control Anambra State. I control the federal government”. Chris is brother to Andy Uba, a close ally of and former aide to Obasanjo and briefly Governor of Anambra State from from May-June 2007.
    Chief Chris Uba

    Dr Andy Uba
    Commentary: Andy Uba used his early support for Olusegun Obasanjo to his advantage. He was both pimp and purse for the President, securing a string of mistresses and representing his interests in business deals. Accompanying Obasanjo on a trip to the United States in 2003, Uba was caught trying to smuggle US$170,000 into the country on Nigeria's presidential jet. The incident led to his resignation as an aide to the president, but was not an end to the extraordinary access and influence he enjoyed in the corridors of power. Uba was briefly Governor of Anambra State between May and June 2007, until a court declared his election illegal. Uba also has extensive oil and gas interests. He set up Afren’s Nigerian affiliate, First Hydrocarbon Nigeria Limited, and has a significant stake in China Sonangol, a joint venture between Angola’s Sonangol and China’s Beiya International Development.
    Dr Andy Uba

    Chief Christopher Adebayo Alao-Akala
    Education: Kamina Barracks Middle School; 5th Battalion of Infantry, Tamale, Ghana; Technical College, Tamale, Ghana; Ogbomosho High School, 1972. Career: Cadet Inspector, Nigeria Police, 1974; Assistant Commissioner of Police, 1995; Deputy Governor, Oyo State, 2003-07; Governor, Oyo State, 2007 to date. Commentary: Alao-Akala was the beneficiary when his predecessor Rasheed Ladoja (to whom he was Deputy Governor) fell out with political strongman Lamidi Adedibu. Adedibu succeeded in getting Ladoja impeached and promoted Alao-Akala as his replacement. A grateful Alao-Akala made sure to keep the state purse open to Adedibu. Alao-Akala has been accused of incompetence and gross mismanagement of state resources. Adedibu’s death in 2008 has thrown the 2011 race for governor wide open.
    Chief Christopher Adebayo Alao-Akala

    Oby Ezekwesili (Obiageli)
    Education: Masters, International Law and Diplomacy, University of Lagos; Masters, Public Administration, Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, United States. Career: Auditor, Deloitte and Touche; Management and Financial Services Consultant, Deloitte and Touche; Founding Director, Transparency International; Director for Africa, Transparency International, 1994-99; Director, Harvard-Nigeria Economic Strategy Program, 2000-02; Senior Special Assistant to the President of Nigeria, Budget Monitoring and Price Intelligence, 2003-05; Minister of Solid Minerals, 2005-06; Federal Minister of Education, 2006-07; Vice-President, Africa Region, World Bank, 2007 – 2012. Commentary: Mrs Ezekwesili retired from the World Bank in May, 2012 and returned to the country where she joined the Open Society Foundation as the Senior Economic Advisor. She is spearheading the foundation's new Africa Economic Policy Development Initiative. Ezekwesili is very close to Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, the Co-ordinating Minister for the economy and Minister of Finance.
    Oby Ezekwesili (Obiageli)

    Major General Muhammadu Buhari
    Married Safinatu Yusuf, 1971, four daughters. Education: Nigerian Military Training College, Kaduna, 1962; Mons Officer Cadet School, Aldershot, United Kingdom, 1962-63; Defence Services Staff College, Wellington, India,1973. Career: Joined the military, 1962; Commissioned Second Lieutenant, 1963; Platoon Commander 2nd Infantry Brigade, Abeokuta; Commander 2nd Infantry Battalion 1965-67; appointed Brigade Major, 2 Sector 1st Infantry Division, April 1967; Brigade Major and Commander, 31st Infantry Brigade, 1970-71; Assistant Adjutant-General 1st Infantry Division Headquarters, 1971-72; Military Governor North-Eastern State (Borno State); Federal Commissioner for Petroleum and Energy, 1976-78; Chairman, Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation; General Officer Commanding (GOC), 3rd Armoured Division, Jos, 1981-83; Head of State and Commander in Chief, Nigerian Armed Forces, 1984-85; overthrown in August 1985 and made to retire from the Army; released on 13 December, 1988, after 40 months in detention; ran unsuccesfully for the Presidency in 1999, 2003 and 2007.
    Major General Muhammadu Buhari

    Atiku Abubakar
    Married to Titi Abubakar, four children and two grandchildren. Also married to Rukayat, Fatima and Jennifer. Education: Jada Junior Primary School 1954-57; Jada Senior Boarding Primary School, 1958-60; Adamawa Provincial Secondary School, Yola, 1961-65; School of Hygiene, Kano, 1966; Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, 1967-69; Cairo Police Academy, 1986. Career: Tax Officer, Northern Nigeria Ministry of Finance, 1966; various positions, Federal Civil Service, 1966-89; Governor, Adwama State, 1999; Vice-President, 1999-2007. Commentary: Abubakar worked as a customs officer for twenty years, rising to the rank of Deputy Director before leaving in 1989 for politics and business. He became a leading political figure, helping Umaru Musa Yar'Adua found the People's Democratic Party (PDP) and running for Vice-President in the 1999 election alongside Olusegun Obasanjo, who he had played a major part in recruiting. They won re-election in 2003. Obasanjo and Abubakar had a spectacular disagreement after Abubakar resisted Obasanjo’s attempt to change the constitution to allow him a third term in office. Obasanjo exacted revenge on his former ally by having him investigated and then hounded out of the party he had helped found. He was in political wilderness; h e lost the 2007 presidential election, coming in third behind Yar’Adua and Muhammadu Buhari on the ticket of the Action Congress (AC). In February 2008 he lost his court challenge of the election. A failed attempt at rapprochement with Obasanjo and the PDP in January 2009 drove a wedge between Abubakar and the AC. Abubakar had a brief resurgence, former military leader General Ibrahim Babangida, former Director of military intelligence Aliyu Mohammed Gusau, the Governor of Kwara State Bukola Saraka – agreed to join forces to support his bid for the presidential nomination. The PDP's political dominance means that the winner of the party's presidential nomination would be the favourite to win the national predidency in elections. However, Jonathan and his campaign team used all the advantages of presidential incumbency against his rival; the screening committee was made up of Jonathan loyalists and Atiku’s supporters protested in vain. Despite their promises, northern PDP heavyweights such as Ibrahim Babangida, Aliyu Mohammed Gusau and Abubakar Bukola Saraki failed to back Atiku. They are unhappy with Jonathan’s nomination but did not deem Atiku a credible rival.
    Atiku Abubakar

    Rilwanu Lukman
    Married with three children Education: Nigerian College of Arts, Science and Technology, Zaria 1956-58; BSc Mining Engineering, Imperial College, London, 1959-62; PhD Chemical Engineering, University of Bologna, Italy, 1964. Career: Inspector of Mines, Mines Division, Federal Ministry of Mines and Power, Jos, 1964-67; Acting Chief Inspector of Mines, Northern Region, 1970-74; General Manager, Cement Company of Northern Nigeria, 1970-74; General Manager and Chief Executive, Nigeria Mining Corporation; Federal Minister of Mines, Power and Steel, 1984-85; Federal Minister of Petroleum Resources,1986-1989; Minister of Foreign Affairs, 1989-90; Chairman of the Board of the National Electric Power Authority (NEPA, now the Power Holding Company of Nigeria); Secretary General, Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), 1995-2000; Founder, Afren, 2004; Minister of Petroleum Resources, 2008-10. Commentary: Lukman founded oil firm Afren in 2004. It quickly became Nigeria's premier indigenous oil and gas exploration and production company. Lukman’s recent term as Minister of Petroleum Resources was controversial. Angry at proposed reforms to the oil and gas sector, militants threatened Afren operations in the Niger Delta. Lukman has been OPEC Secretary General twice and enjoys immense clout and respect in international oil circles. In October 1987, he became the first African to receive a fellowship award at Imperial College, London. Lukman left office in March 2010, after Acting President Goodluck Jonathan dissolved cabinet.
    Rilwanu Lukman

    General Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida (IBB)
    Married to Maryam King, with four children. Education: Government College Bida, 1957-62; Nigerian Military Training College, Kaduna, 1962-63; Indian Military Academy, 1964; Royal Armoured Centre, United Kingdom, 1966, 1967; Advanced Armoured Officers’ Course, Army Armoured School, United States, 1972-73; Command and Staff College, Jaji, 1977; Nigerian Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies, Kuru, 1979; Senior International Defence Management Course, Naval Postgraduate School, USA, 1980. Career: Commissioned 2nd Lieutenant, Nigerian Army, 1963; appointed Commanding Officer, 1st Reconnaissance Squadron, 1964-66; promoted to Captain, August 1968, and Major, April 1970; Instructor and Company Commander, Nigerian Defence Academy, 1970-72; appointed Commander, Reconnaissance Regiment and promoted to Lieutenant-Colonel, 1974; Inspector and later Commander, Nigerian Army Armoured Corps, 1975; promoted to Brigadier, 1979; appointed Director, Army Staff Duties and Plans, 1981-83; promoted to Major-General, March 1983; appointed Chief of Army Staff, 31 December, 1983; member, Supreme Military Council, August 1975-October 1979 and December 1983-August 1985; became Head of State, Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces, 27 August 1985; President of Nigeria, 1985-93. Commentary: Nicknamed 'Maradona' for his political survival skills, General Babangida took power from Muhammadu Buhari in a palace coup in August 1985. He was Head of State until August 1993, when he annulled the June election after Yoruba candidate Moshood K.O. Abiola had won it. Babangida came to power promising to end corruption and human rights abuses, but his regime stands accused of some of the worst abuses in Nigeria's history. A report by economist Pius Okigbo on how the Babangida regime spent windfall profits after the first Gulf War would have shed more light but was never published. A multi-millionaire, Babangida has an extensive network of wealthy Nigerians loyal to him, some rumoured to be fronts for his corporate interests. He was a runner in the PDP's presidential primaries but withdrew in January 2011.
    General Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida (IBB)

    General Aliyu Mohammed Gusau
    Commentary: Gusau, a former General, has been a key player in Nigerian intelligence for over three decades and is well respected in international intelligence and diplomatic circles. He is an important figure in Nigerian history: On 17 November 1993, along with Sani Abacha and Oladipo Diya, he marched into the offices of Chief Shonekan (made President by a departing Ibrahim Babangida) and asked for his resignation. Gusau later fell out with Abacha - the two had never been great friends. Gusau was also instrumental in supporting Olusegun Obasanjo’s presidency and in dissuading him from a third term in office. He emerged from the shadows to launch a bid for the presidency in 2007, having resigned as National Security Advisor a few months earlier. He was then re-appointed as National Security Advisor by Acting President Goodluck Jonathan in 2010, before resigning, again, to contend in the 2011 Presidential elections.
    General Aliyu Mohammed Gusau

    Mujahid Dokubo-Asari (Asari)
    Education: Primary and Secondary School, Port Harcourt; University of Calabar, 1988-90. Career: Stood unsuccessfully for election, Rivers State House of Assembly, 1992; stood unsuccessfully for election, Chairman of Asari-Toru; First Vice-President, Ijaw Youth Council (IYC), 1998; President, IYC, 2001; Founder, Niger Delta People’s Volunteer Force (NDPVF), 2004; arrested for treason, 2005. Commentary: Son of a judge and born Melford Dokubo Goodhead Junior, Asari graduated from leading the Ijaw Youth Congress into armed direct action against foreign oil companies. After military training in Libya, he returned home in 2003. He fell out with the then Rivers State Governor, Peter Odili, and formed the NDPVF, fighting with rival militant Tom. After his arrest and release under an earlier amnesty, he informed on his former patrons and comrades. In a recent video interview, Dokubo asserted there will be trouble if Nigeria fails to vote Goodluck Jonathan into office (In 2015) as the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. Members of the House of Representatives have demanded Dokubo's arrest due to various claimed attempts by him to incite violence between the north and southern parts of Nigeria.
    Mujahid Dokubo-Asari (Asari)

    High Chief Government Ekpemupolo (Tompolo)
    Career: Contractor, Chevron; one of five original commanders, Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND); Commander, Camp Five. Commentary: In contrast to the commotion his military campaign has provoked, High Chief Government Ekpemupolo, alias Tompolo, is quiet, unassuming and self conscious. He is far less educated than some of MEND’s sophisticated operators, who have delighted in getting their story across to foreign journalists. Tompolo’s military career began during the Warri crisis, the 1997 war between Ijaws and Itsekiris, which began after General Sani Abacha’s government moved the local government headquarters from the Ijaw to the Itsekiri part of the city of Warri. Tompolo soon earned a reputation for bravery and ruthlessness. After the fighting ended, threats to his life forced him to flee Warri and move to Oporoza, in Gbaramatu Kingdom. There, he and his fighters decided to lead a military campaign against Shell, accusing the oil company of environmental despoliation and exploitation. The operation turned into a protection racket, with Shell making regular payments to Tompolo and his associates. Impressed, the governors of Delta and Bayelsa states hired Tompolo to assist in political enforcement. He was heavily involved in the war against the Itsekiri neighbours of former Bayelsa Governor Diepreye Alamieyeseigha. Politicians and senior military officers also paid Tompolo to protect their illegal bunkering operations. He reportedly has a house in South Africa, and often receives visits from Delta State politicians and President Goodluck Jonathan. Tompolo is much feared among the Ijaw. His reputation has been boosted by his worship of Egbesu, an ancient Ijaw god of war, revived to symbolise the struggle against the federal government and oil companies. Followers of Egbesu believe he provides protection from death and capture during war. Tompolo is in the inner sanctum of Egbesu warriors and an exponent of their elaborate sacrifices and rituals. In May 2009, the former MEND commander in Bayelsa State was the target of a Joint Task Force operation that left scores of people dead and drove thousands of refugees from the Gbaramatu area. Fourteen of his ex-commanders have written to President Goodluck Jonathan, complaining that he profits from money meant for rehabilitating militants.
    High Chief Government Ekpemupolo (Tompolo)

    Ateke Tom
    Commentary: He promised Jonathan he would renounce violence in October 2009. In 1999, he had formed a vigilante group to fight the Bush Boys and at the 2003 elections in Rivers State, his ‘Icelanders’ delivered victory for the People’s Democratic Party in Okrika local government, an opposition stronghold. His group, Niger Delta Vigilantes, took over the KKK and Greenlanders gang, beheading its leader, Julius. Until the 2004 peace accords, his rivalry with Dokubo-Asari paralysed the Delta for a year. Tom has renounced militancy but could resume operations if political patronage dries up.
    Ateke Tom

    Soboma George
    Biography: Second in command to Ateke Tom, leader of armed gang the Icelanders; founded the Outlaws after being betrayed by Ateke, 2004; escaped from Port Harcourt Prison, June 2005. Commentary: Soboma George is the leader of the Outlaws, an armed gang mostly engaged in kidnapping and hostage taking. He surrendered to federal police in August 2009 after he accepted the terms of an amnesty offered by President Umaru Musa Yar'Adua. He started his violent career as a member of the Icelanders, an all male gang that terrorised residents of Port Harcourt. With his gang, he made two audacious gaolbreaks and escaped numerous attempts on his life. He has a formidable reputation for violence and ruthlessness. He was reported dead in August 2010.
    Soboma George

    Mr Fara Dagogo
    Career: Commander (estranged), Niger Delta People's Volunteer Force (NDPVF); Founder, Niger Delta Strike Force (NDSF), 2005; Senior Commander, Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND), Henry Okah faction, Eastern Command. Commentary: Dagogo surrendered on 9 October 2009 as part of an amnesty plan extended to militants by President Umaru Yar'Adua. He is notorious for a vicious battle between the NDSF and the Outlaws, a cult group controlled by Soboma George. The battle, in which several militants and innocent civilians were killed, was fought because of a disagreement over how to split the proceeds of hostage taking, an activity subscribed to by both men. Both men are Kalabaris but Dagogo is from Bakana while George is from Buguma. Dagogo is a former commander in Mujahid Dokubo-Asari’s Niger Delta People’s Volunteer Force (NDPVF). He led the Niger Delta Strike Force which emerged in 2007 from Asari’s group. Four days after the 1 October 2010 Abuja bombing, Farah and other MEND leaders met Jonathan to repudiate the atrocity.
    Mr Fara Dagogo

    Cynthia Whyte
    Commentary: As spokesperson for the Joint Revolutionary Council, an umbrella organisation of militant groups, Cynthia Whyte has become the unseen but very public voice of militancy in the Delta. She is the most intransigent militant voice since John Gbomo. Like him, she communicates mostly by email, sending out missives lambasting everyone from government officials, to oil companies, to peace activists, to NGOs, and even other militants.
    Cynthia Whyte

    Mr Aliko Dangote
    Education: Business Studies, Al-Azahar University, Egypt. Career: Founder/Chief Executive, the Dangote Group, 1977 to date. Commentary: Dangote's trading firm, set up in 1977 with a small loan from his uncle, is now a conglomerate with interests in cement, sugar, freight and other activities. It has a presence in several African countries including Benin, Ghana and South Africa. Dangote is one of the richest men in Nigeria, ranking 463rd on Forbes' World's Billionaires list in 2010. He has been a frequent donor to political campaigns and causes and has been magnificently rewarded. For example, he donated US$2 million to Olusegun Obasanjo’s presidential library and was rewarded with several choice government concessions that earned him billions of naira. He is a keen Arsenal supporter.
    Mr Aliko Dangote

    Admiral Murtala Nyako
    Education: Britannia Royal Naval College, Dartmouth, United Kingdom, 1963-65; Indian Naval Ships School, Vendruthy, India, 1969-70; Naval War College, United States, 1975; Royal College of Defence Studies, Nigeria, 1983. Career: Enlisted, Nigerian Navy (NN), 1963; commissioned Sub-Lieutenant, NN, 1966; Officer, Nigerian Naval Station (NNS) Benin and Obuma, 1966-67; First Executive Officer, NNS Kwa Riber, 1968; Commanding Officer NNS Ekpe, 1968-69; Navigating Officer, NNS Obum, 1970-72; Staff Officer, Naval Headquarters, NN, 1972-74; Governor, Niger State, 1976-77; Commanding Officer, NNS Erinomi, 1977; Flag Officer Commanding Western Naval Command, 1985-88; Flag Officer Commanding, Naval Training Command, Lagos, 1989; Member, Armed Forces Ruling Council/National Defence Council, 1985-89; Commander, Naval Training Command, 1988; Chief of Naval Staff, 1990-92; Deputy Chief of Defence Staff, 1992-93; Governor, Adamawa State, 2007 to date. Commentary: Nyako owns Sebore Farm, one of the biggest farms in the country. His approach to government is just as large. He has more than 2000 special assistants, many of whom are relatives. The Adamawa State People's Democratic Party (PDP) is divided over whether to allow Nyako to win in the elections scheduled for 2011.
    Admiral Murtala Nyako

    Colonel David Mark
    Education: St Francis Catholic Practising School, Otukpo, 1956-61; Nigerian Military School, Zaria, 1962-66; Nigeria Defence Academy, Kaduna, 1967-70; School of Signals, Blandford, United Kingdom, 1970; College of Military Engineering, Poona, Military College of Telecommunication Engineering, Mhow, 1971-75; Command Staff College, Jaji, 1978-79; National Defence University, Washington DC, 1990-91; Harvard University, Boston, 1991-92. Career: Commander 1 Division Headquarters & Signals, Kaduna; Commandant, School of Signals, Lagos; Staff Officer, Operations Headquarters & Signals Lagos; Sports Officer, Signal Brigade, Lagos; Faculty Director, National War College; General Staff Officer, Grade I Coordinate Command & Staff College, Jaji; Directing Staff Officer, Command and Staff College, Jaji; Commander, 3rd Marine Signals Division, Port-Harcourt; Brigade Major, Signal Brigade, Lagos; Director of Telecommunications, Army Headquarters, Lagos; Chairman, Abandoned Properties Implementation Commission; Military Governor, Niger State, 1984-86; Minister of Communications, 1987; self-imposed exile, 1993-98; Senator, Benue South, 1999-03; Senator, Benue South, 2003-07; Senator, Benue South, 2007 to date; Senate President, 2007 to date. Commentary: While Minister of Communications in the 1980s, Mark once said telephones were not meant for poor people. He and General Joshua Dogonyaro were reported to have vowed to kill Chief Moshood Abiola if power were handed to him. A messy divorce saw him pay a £6 million settlement to a former wife (his fifth). He was also a staunch supporter of Olusegun Obasanjo’s bid to alter the constitution to allow a third term. His frequent support for people in power had him named one of “IBB's boys” while Ibrahim Babangida was Head of State. He was secured the Senate presidency by Obasanjo.
    Colonel David Mark

    Mr Shehu Musa Yar'Adua
    Education: Katsina Provincial Secondary School; Royal Military Academy, Sandhurst, United Kingdom. Career: Nigerian Army; Federal Commissioner of Transport, 1976; Vice-President, 1976-79; imprisoned by Sani Abacha’s Government, 1995. Commentary: Older brother to Former President Umaru Musa Yar'Adua (2007-10), Shehu Yar'Adua Olusegun Obasanjo's deputy during the 1976-79 military regime. The lifelong friendship between the two men contributed to Obasanjo backing Umaru Yar'Adua as the People's Democratic Party (PDP) presidential candidate. Shehu Yar'Adua died behind bars after being sentenced to life in prison by Abacha, after he called for a return to civilian rule.
    Mr Shehu Musa Yar'Adua

    Professor Ibrahim Agboola Gambari
    Education: Higher Certificate, King’s College, Lagos, 1964; BSc, Economics, London School of Economics and Political Science; MA, Columbia University, 1970; PhD, Columbia University, 1974. Career: Lecturer, City University of New York, 1969-74; Lecturer, Ahmadu Bello University, 1977; Director General, Nigerian Institute for International Affairs, 1983-84; External Affairs Minister, 1984-85; Visiting Professor, John Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies, 1986-89; Permanent Representative to the United Nations (UN), 1990-99; Special Advisor to the Secretary General for Special Assignments in Africa, UN, 1999-2007; Special Advisor on the International Compact with Iraq, 2007; United Nationa-AU Joint Special Representative on Darfur, 2010 to date Commentary: Gambari is internationally known for his many visits to Myanmar as the UN Secretary-General's special representative. He has been criticised for being too soft on pro-democracy campaigner Aung San Suu Kyi's captors and for not asking to see the infamous Insein Prison. He was appointed chairman of the Steering Committee of the 2008 Delta Summit by Jonathan. This was a mistake. Gambari served as Nigeria's UN envoy in the 1990s and was an apologist for the military regimes of General Sani Abacha and Major General Abdulsalami Abubakar. Delta leaders have neither forgotten nor forgiven Gambari's description of executed civil rights activist Ken Saro-Wiwa as a 'common criminal'. Faced with strenuous opposition from political and community leaders from the oil-producing southern states, Gambari resigned and the meeting failed to take place, transforming a summit into a dialogue. As usual, Jonathan's judgement was widely questioned. In 2009, he publicly spoke out against President Umaru Yar'Adua, saying that his absence from the September 2009 United Nations General Assembly threatened Nigeria’s bid for a UN Security Council seat.
    Professor Ibrahim Agboola Gambari

    Baba Gana Kingibe
    Education: Borno Provincial Secondary School, 1958-60; Native Authority Scholarship, Bishop Stortford School, United Kingdom, 1960; International Relations, University of Sussex, UK; PhD, Switzerland. Career: Research and Planning Officer, Ahmadu Bello University; Lecturer, International Relations, Ahmadu Bello University, 1969-71; Head, Current Affairs and Features Department, Northern Nigeria Broadcasting Corporation, 1970-72; External Affairs Officer, Ministry of External Affairs, Lagos, 1972-75; Principal Political Secretary, Supreme Military Headquarters, Lagos, Principal Political Secretary, Executive Office of the President, 1976-81; Minister of Foreign Affairs, 1995-95; Secretary to the Federal Government of Nigeria 2007-08. Commentary: Babagana was Secretary to the Government until he was sacked by Yar'Adua in 2008, who suspected him of scheming against him. He had previously fallen out with Yar'Adua's brother, Shehu Musa, in the eralyl nineties and has amassed many enemies in over 30 years in government. He was succeeded by Yayale Ahmed, previously Minister of Defence.
    Baba Gana Kingibe

    Mr Nduka Obaigbena
    Education: Edo College, Benin City; University of Benin; Advanced Management Program, University of Cape Town. Career: Satirist, writer, cartoonist, Nigerian Observer, 1978; Coordinating Editor, the Dawn; Special Section Representative, Newsweek, 1984; Special Surveys and Country Sections, Time, 1984; Editor-in-Chief, THISWEEK, 1987; elected member, Constitutional Conference, 1994; Founder, Leaders and Company Ltd (THISDAY newspapers), 1995; Chairman, Cross Debts Sub-Committee, 2002. Commentary: Obaigbena is easily Nigeria’s most visible newspaper publisher. He is known foremost for his Africa Rising concerts, a series of music, art and fashion concerts held in major cities across the world to promote African talent. His name has been mentioned in some dubious deals. He is said to have received some US$6 million from allegedly corrupt Rivers State Governor Peter Odili.
    Mr Nduka Obaigbena

    Mr Odein Ajumogobia

    Mr Odein Ajumogobia

    Mallam Nasir Ahmed El-Rufai
    Education: Barewa College, 1976; BSc Quantity Surveying, Ahmadu Bello University; MBA, Harvard University, United States. Career: Director General, Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE), 1999-03; Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, 2003-07. Commentary: El-Rufai was BPE Secretary when it was under the direction of then Vice-President Atiku Abubakar. Abubakar picked him out as a future minister, but his nomination fell through after he accused two senators of extorting a 54 million naira bribe from him. The two senators (Ibrahim Mantu and Jonathan Silas Zwingina) denied the charges. The House of Representatives banned El-Rufai from ever holding political office in Nigeria but the decision was thrown out, deemed an infringement on his human rights. In mid-2009 he made waves with an open letter detailing the process that saw Umaru Yar'Adua win the 2007 presidential election. El-Rufai has been named by Tunde Bakare, a Pentecostl pastor and trenchant political activist and co-founder of the Save Nigeria Group (SNG), as one he would invite to form the core of the government if his alliance is successful in up-ending the PDP in 2011.
    Mallam Nasir Ahmed El-Rufai

    Mr Emeka Anyaoku
    Education: Merchants of Light School, Oba; University College of Ibadan. Career: Joined Commonwealth Development Corporation, 1959; Posted to Nigeria’s Permanent Mission to the United Nations, New York, 1963; Assistant Director of International Affairs, 1966; Assistant Secretary-General, 1975; Deputy Secretary-General with responsibility for international affairs and the Secretariat’s administration, 1977-83; Foreign Minister, 1983-84; Deputy Secretary-General, Commonwealth, 1984-89; Commonwealth Secretary-General, 1989-00. Commentary: Referred to as a ‘diplomat's diplomat,’ Anyaoku worked for over 35 years in diplomacy and international affairs. He promoted the Commonwealth's role in the democracy movement of the 1990s, with the formulation of the Harare Declaration on Human Rights and Democracy in 1991. It was in Anyaoku's own country that the Declaration was first seriously tested in 1997, when General Sani Abacha's regime executed Niger Delta activist Ken Saro-Wiwa and eight others. Nigeria was suspended from the Commonwealth but Anyaoku stayed on as Secretary General.He has turned down invitations from several politicians to enter politics and contest the presidency. He is a traditional Ndichie chief, Ichie Adazie of Obosi. In 1997 he organised the first African Commonwealth Heads of Government Roundtable to promote democracy and good governance in Africa.
    Mr Emeka Anyaoku

    Abba Sayyadi Ruma
    Commentary: Ruma was a key member of the K34 group, a group formed in Katsina by Umaru Musa Yar'Adua while he was governor of Katsina State. The group contributed money and strategy to Yar'Adua's campaigns, and were rewarded with choice appointments and contracts. Others members included Tanimu Yakubu and Ibrahim Sherma. Ruma was convinced to join the group from the opposition All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP) in 2003. He became a minister 4 years later, after Yar'Adua was elected president. In October 2009, along with the ministers of health and the environment, he was called in by the Senate to explain what happened to 26 billion naria earmarked to construct a dam. He left office in March 2010 when Acting President Goodluck Jonathan dissolved cabinet.
    Abba Sayyadi Ruma

    Dr. Shamsudeen Usman
    Education: BSc, Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria; MSc and PhD, London School of Economics and Political Science, United Kingdom. Biography: Planning Officer, Kano State Ministry of Economic Planning, 1974-76; taught economic analysis and public finance, University of Jos, Ahmadu Bello University and Bayero University, Kano, 1976-81; Controller, then Special Economic Advisor, Nigerian Industrial Development Bank, 1981-85; General Manager, NAL Merchant Bank, 1985-89; Director General, Technical Committee of Privatisation and Commercialisation, 1989-91; Deputy Governor of the Central Bank, 2004-07; Alternate Chairman, Nigerian Security, Printing and Minting Company; Minister of Finance, 2007-09; Minister of National Planning, 2009 to date. Commentary: In two years as Finance Minister, Usman did a spectacular job of making powerful enemies. These included Senate President David Mark and Speaker of the House of Representatives Dimeji Bankole. Pressure on President Umaru Musa Yar'Adua from Usman’s many adversaries was behind his move to the Ministry of National Planning. Usman is respected as a straight shooter. He speaks French and Arabic.
    Dr. Shamsudeen Usman

    Chief Ojo Maduekwe
    Education: Adventist High School, Ihie, 1964-65; Hope Waddell Training Institution, Calabar; University of Nigeria; Nigerian Law School. Career: Assistant Labour Inspector, Federal Ministry of Labour, 1983; member of the Constituent Assembly, 1988-89; Advisor to the Social Democratic Party Chairman, 1990-92; Advisor, Minister of Foreign Affairs, 1993-95; Minister, Culture and Tourism, 1990-00; Minister, Transport, 2000-03; National Secretary, People's Democratic Party (PDP); Legal & Constitutional Advisor to the President, 2003-05; Minister, Foreign Affairs, 2007-10. Commentary: Maduekwe has made a career out of opportunism. He turned up uninvited at President Barack Obama’s inauguration, despite established protocol that only accredited resident diplomats be allowed to attend. He was a vocal supporter of Sani Abacha’s vigorous efforts to remain in power but later served in the administration of a man Abacha had imprisoned. He also served under Umaru Musa Yar'Adua, whose brother had been imprisoned by Abacha. Every senator in his home state opposed his 2007 appointment as Minister of Foreign Affairs. Maduekwe left office when Acting President Goodluck Jonathan dissolved cabinet in March 2010.
    Chief Ojo Maduekwe

    General Sani Abacha
    Education: Nigerian Military College, Kaduna, 1962-63; Mons Defence Cadet College, Aldershot, United Kingdom, 1963; School of Infantry, Warminster, UK, 1966 and 1971; Command Staff College, Jaji, 1976; National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies, Kuru, 1981. Career: Transferred from the Air Force to the army, 1975; Chief of Army Staff, 1985; Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, 1989-90; Minister of Defence, 1990; President and Commander of the Armed Forces, 1993. Commentary: General Sani Abacha took power in a bloodless coup in November 1993 and left it suddenly in a 'cardiac coup' on 7 June 1998. He has the doubtful honour of being thought of by many as the most brutal dictator in Nigeria’s history. His regime is regarded as even more corrupt and brutal than that of General Ibrahim Babangida, and he is blamed for undermining Nigeria's military and economy. Gen. Abacha and his family misappropriated billions of dollars from state coffers. In 2009, a court in Geneva, Switzerland, learnt how, from 1993-98, Abacha's family members and their advisors set up front companies to channel hundreds of millions of dollars in stolen state funds through established Western banks including Credit Suisse, Merrill Lynch and Goldman Sachs. Abba Abacha, a son of the former military leader, was convicted for participating in a criminal organisation. Abacha's death, allegedly in an orgy with Indian prostitutes, left many Nigerians puzzling over whether it was his failing health or his fellow officers that finally ended his career. Some of his closest confidants insisted he was poisoned; yet others in Abuja thought that his poor health made a nocturnal heart attack entirely plausible. Abacha was ostracised in international circles after the 1995 killing of the political and environmental activist, Ken Saro Wiwa. His time in office was marked by frequent purges of the army and tight restrictions on political activity.
    General Sani Abacha

    Dr Tanimu Yakubu
    Career: Former Managing Director and CEO of the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria; Director General of Umaru Musa Yar'Adua’s presidential campaign; Deputy Chief of Staff to the President; Economic Advisor, 2007 to date.
    Dr Tanimu Yakubu

    Mr Joshua Chibi Dariye
    Career: Governor, Plateau State, 1999-04, 2004-06, 2007. Commentary: Joshua Dariye's arrest in the UK in 2004 was the first in what many saw as a series of targeted prosecutions by General Olusegun Obasanjo. The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) froze Dariye's accounts, which contained almost US$3 million. He was then arrested in London on money laundering charges, but managed to skip bail and returned to Nigeria. He has since been unable to travel as the EFCC has seized his passport.
    Mr Joshua Chibi Dariye

    Mr Orji Uzor Kalu
    Education: Christ the King School, Aba; Eziama High School, Aba; Government College, Umuahia; University of Maiduguri; Harvard University; Abia State University. Career: Chairman, Cooperative and Commerce Bank Limited, 1987; Founder, SLOK; Founder, People's Democratic Party (PDP), 1998; Governor, Abia State, 1999-07. Commentary: Orji Kalu's generous contributions to the PDP once led him to remark that if the party were a company he would be its largest shareholder. As Abia State Governor, he was responsible for the emergence of the Bakassi Boys, a group of vigilantes that acted as his personal police force. His interest in business developed during his days as a student at the University of Maiduguri. It was at the university that he met then Vice Chancellor Jibril Aminu. The relationship helped him greatly when Aminu became the Oil Minister and granted Kalu an oil block.
    Mr Orji Uzor Kalu

    Dr. Chimaroke Nnamani
    Education: The College of Immaculate Conception, Enugu; College of Medicine, University of Nigeria, 1977-83; Obstetrics and Gynecology, State University of New York, USA, 1987-91; Postgraduate Training, 1991-93. Career: Resident in Obstetrics and Gynecology, 1987-90; Chief Resident, Obstetrics and Gynecology, 1990-91; Attending, Obstetrics and Gynecology, Loma Linda Medical Centre, and Loma Linda University College of Medicine and Perinatal Biology Centre, 1991-93; Attending, Obstetrics, Gynecology and Maternal Fetal Medicine, Florida; Attending, Arnold Palmer Hospital for Women, Orlando, Florida; Attending, Winter Park Hospital, Orlando, Florida; Chief Associate, Maternal and Fetal Medicine, Orlando, Florida; Executive Governor of Enugu State, 1999-07; Senator, Enugu East, 2007-date. Commentary: Nnamani worked as an obstetrician/gynecologist (OBGYN) in Florida before returning to Nigeria to become a politician. His reputation suffered when he supported Olusegun Obasanjo’s controversial bid to change the constitution to allow him a third term as President. Since becoming Senator he has had a difficult relationship with Sullivan Chime, the man who replaced him as Governor. The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) investigated Nnamani for financial crimes while he was still Enugu State Governor. In August 2009, under the orders of a Federal High Court, the EFCC sealed several of Nnamani's businesses, including a university, a college, a radio station and a car dealership.
    Dr. Chimaroke Nnamani

    Ms Irene Nkechi Chigbue
    Married to Dr M.D. Chigbue, three children. Education: BA, Economics, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, 1977; LLB, Kings College, London, UK, 1979-82; LLM, Kings College, 1982-83; BL, Nigeria Law School, 1983-84. Career: Senior Supervisor, Central Bank of Nigeria, Benin Branch, 1977-78; External Affairs Officer, Federal Ministry of External Affairs, 1978-79; Attorney, Kehinde Sofola and Co; Managing Partner, Chigbue and Chigbue & Co, 1985-88; Legal Officer, Technical Committee on Privatisation and Commercialisation (TCPC), 1989-91; Principal Executive, TCPC, 1991-92; Deputy Director and Head of Legal and Secretariat Department, TPCP; Director, Legal Services, TCPC, 2000; Director, Infrastructure and Networks, Bureau of Public Enterprise (BPE), 2003-4; Director General, BPE, 2005-09. Commentary: Chigbue's term as Director General of the Bureau of Privatisation Enterprise (BPE) was controversial. There were allegations that state-owned telecoms company NITEL, national aluminium company ALSCOM, and state-owned newspaper the Daily Times, were sold at low prices to politically connected insiders. She was replaced by Dr Christopher Anyanwu in 2009.
    Ms Irene Nkechi Chigbue

    Major General Godwin Osagie Abbe
    Career: Military Governor, Akwa Ibom State, 1988-90; Director of Operations, Nigerian Army, 1993-94; General Commanding Officer, Nigerian Army, 1994-95; Training and Doctrine Command (TRADOC) Commander, Nigerian Army, 1996-98; Commandant, National War College, 1998-99; Chairman, People's Democratic Party (PDP) Oredo Chapter, 1999-07; Minister of the Interior, 2007-09; Minister of Defence, 2009 to date. Commentary: Godwin Abbe started an international incident when he said the amount of water produced yearly in Ghana was not sufficient to flush the toilets in Lagos; and that the amount spent on teachers in Ghana was less than in one region (the south-west) of Nigeria. Abbe was instrumental in the amnesty for the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND) militants, escorting several of them on their trips to Aso Rock and meeting with Tompolo to persuade him to surrender, which he did on 4 October 2009. He became Minister of Defence after militants attacked Lagos’ Atlas Cove jetty in July 2009.
    Major General Godwin Osagie Abbe

    Mr Fela Anikulapo Kuti (Fela)
    Married to Remilekun Taylor, 3 children, Femi, Yeni and Sola Education: Music, Trinity College of Music, London, United Kingdom, 1958. Career: Singer/songwriter, Koola Lobitos, London, 1958-63; moved back to Nigeria, 1963; Koola Lobitos reformed, 1963; took Koola Lobitos to the United States, 1969; Koola Lobitos renamed Africa ‘70, 1970; returned to Nigeria, 1970; Founder, Kalakuta Republic, 1970; hit album Zombie released, 1977; formed political party, Movement of the People, 1979; put himself forward for presidential elections, candidature refused, 1979; formed Egypt ‘80, 1980; jailed for currency smuggling, 1984-85; arrested and charged with murder, 1993; Olikoye Ransome-Kuti announces Fela's death, 1997. Commentary: The father of afrobeat, Fela Kuti was one of Nigeria’s most famous singer-songwriters. Heavily influenced by the Black Power movement in his early years, he became a voice for the politically oppressed in Nigeria and a tireless campaigner for human rights. His vociferous attacks against injustice made him the recipient of a steady barrage of harassment from powerful figures but also earned him great respect from those who loved his music and his message.
    Mr Fela Anikulapo Kuti (Fela)

    Governor Abubakar Bukola Saraki
    Married with four children Education: Corona School, Victoria Island Lagos, 1966-72; King’s College, Lagos, 1973-78; Cheltenham College, Cheltenham, United Kingdom, 1979-81; London Hospital Medical College, University of London, 1982-87. Career: Medical Officer, Rush Green Hospital, Essex, London, 1988-89, Senior Casualty officer, Royal Free Hospital, London, 1988-89; Director, Societe Generale (Nigeria) Ltd, 1990-00; Special Assistant to the President on Budget, 2000; Governor of Kwara State, 2003 to date. Commentary: Bukola Saraki was embroiled in controversy when his tenure at the bank his father founded (Societe-General) ended in the bank’s collapse. Its account at the Central Bank had been overdrawn by 11 billion naira.
    Governor Abubakar Bukola Saraki

    Mr George Akume
    Education: Government Secondary School, Otobi, 1967-71; St Louis College, Jos; BA, Sociology, University of Ibadan, 1978; MA, Labour Relations, University of Ibadan, 1986. Career: Sole Administrator, Idah LGA, 1989; Sole Administrator, Gboko LGA, 1992; Director General/Permanent Secretary, Cabinet Office, Markudi; Executive Governor, Benue State, 1999-2007; Senator, Benue North West Constituency, 2007 to date. Commentary: As he was finishing his eight-year term as Benue State Governor, Akume was being investigated for financial crimes while in office. He reached out to a constituent, retired Assistant Inspector General of Police Farida Waziri, who intervened on his behalf and maybe even stood surety for him to be granted bail. Akume is also very close to James Ibori, indicted former governor of Delta State.
    Mr George Akume

    Lucky Igbinedion
    Education: University of Wyoming; MBA, Jackson State University, Mississippi, USA, 1984. Career: Governor, Edo State, 1999-2007. Commentary: Reported to be suffering from AIDS, Igbinedion was lucky to avoid imprisonment after prosecutions for theft and fraud. He got away with a fine after his father prevailed on an old friendship with Tony Anenih to get the punishment reduced. His business interest in Sierra Leone, Skanga International, includes a petrochemicals company and a large fishing concern. He moved operations to that country after being more vigorously pursued in South Africa than he would have liked. A South African business associate died with massive amounts of Igbinedion’s money in his care and litigation to regain control failed.
    Lucky Igbinedion

    Ahmed Mohammed Makarfi
    Education: Federal Government College, Enugu, 1973-78; BA, Accountancy, Ahmadu Bello University; MSc, Accountancy and Finance, 1985-87. Career: Chief Accountant and Assistant General Manager, Nigeria Universal Bank, 1985-87; Honorable Commissioner of Finance and Economic Planning, 1994; Governor, Kaduna State, 1999-2007; Senator, Kaduna North, 2007 to date. Commentary: While Kaduna State Governor, Ahmed Makarfi was one of a handful of governors to resist calls for the implementation of Sharia law. According to critics, this was not because of religious tolerance, but because he wanted to reduce the influence of local imams and judges. He finally conceded when Kaduna State imams asked worshippers to curse his name at daily prayers. In 2009, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) investigated the governor turned senator for payments made to Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) officials totaling 243 million naira. He was also investigated for several improper deals during his eight years as governor. Makarfi enjoyed a close relationship with Olusegun Obasanjo but is not on good terms with his former friend Namadi Sambo, who succeeded him as Governor of Kaduna State.
    Ahmed Mohammed Makarfi

    Chief Moshood Kahimawo Olawale Abiola (MKO Abiola)
    Education: Baptist Boys High School, Abeokuta, 1951-56; University of Glasgow, UK, 1961-63. Career: Deputy Chief Accountant, University of Lagos Teaching Hospital, 1965; Financial Controller, Pfizer Products Ltd, 1967; International Telephone and Telegraph (ITT) Nigeria, 1968; Chief Executive, ITT Nigeria, 1971; joined the National Party of Nigeria (NPN), 1979; retired from NPN, 1982; presidential candidate, Social Democratic Party (SDP), 1993; arrested for treason, 1994. Commentary: Abiola won the 1993 elections, widely believed to have been Nigeria’s freest and fairest ever. He was denied the mandate by General Babangida, military ruler from 1985-93, who cited the large amounts owed Abiola by the federal government as sufficient reason to annul the election results. Abiola was placed in prison by Sani Abacha, who succeeded Babangida. He outlived Abacha by a day, dying of poison directly after a meal with an envoy from the United States. He had been in prison for four years and died the day before he was to be released. Prior to his arrest he was one of Nigeria’s wealthiest men, but his fortunes suffered while he was in prison.
    Chief Moshood Kahimawo Olawale Abiola (MKO Abiola)

    Dr Emmanuel Eweta Uduaghan
    Education: Baptist Primary School, Mogosar, 1961-66; Federal Government College, Warri, 1968-74; MBBS, University of Benin, Nigeria, 1975-80; Diploma, University of Benin, 1985-86. Career: Delta Steel Company Medical Centre, Aladja, 1982-88; served in various healthcare facilities, 1989-94; set up the Abode Clinic, Warri, 1989; Commissioner of Health, Delta State, 1999-03; Secretary to the State Government, 2003-07; Governor, Delta State, 2007 to date. Commentary: Emmanuel Uduaghan was selected as Delta State Governor by previous governor, James Ibori, who is also his cousin. Uduaghan has been linked to multi-million dollar properties in Washington DC. The ownership papers are under the name of his younger brother, Victor, but he was at medical school at the time of purchase, while Uduaghan was in government.
    Dr Emmanuel Eweta Uduaghan

    Mr Festus Keyamo
    Commentary: Legal activist Keyamo began his career as a member of the legal team of the National Democratic Coalition (NADECO), the organisation formed to resist Sani Abacha’s dictatorial reign. He gained further experience at the chambers of Gani Fawehinmi, Nigeria’s greatest legal activist. Keyamo spearheaded a challenge of a car procurement contract involving Dimeji Bankole, Speaker of the House of Representatives. He led a crusade to unravel the murder of Chief Bola Ige, and was lead counsel for the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) in their successful prosecution of Chief Bode George for stealing money meant for contracts.
    Mr Festus Keyamo

    Mr Oronto Douglas
    Career: Lawyer, defence team for Ken Saro Wiwa, 1995; Co-founder, Environmental Rights Action/Friends of the Earth Nigeria; Co-author (with Ike Okonta), Where Vultures Feast: Shell, human rights and oil in the Niger Delta. Commentary: Oronto Douglas is a leading human rights attorney and author. He was one of a team of lawyers representing Ken Saro Wiwa during his trial under the Sani Abacha regime. He has been imprisoned many times by various dictators. Douglas suffers from stomach cancer and has been receiving treatment at a San Francisco hospital since 2008, where he has racked up bills of almost US$300,000. When President Umaru Yar'Adua balked at paying the bills, it was considered an affront to Ijaws by members of the then vice-president, Goodluck Jonathan’s, team. Jonathan, like Douglas, is an Ijaw.
    Mr Oronto Douglas

    Major General Abdullahi Sarki Mukhtar
    Education: Kofar Kudu Primary School, Kano, 1957-60; Gwale Senior Primary School, Kano, 1961-62; Provincial Secondary School, Kano, 1963-67; Nigerian Defence Academy, Kaduna, 1968-71; Nigerian Law School, Lagos, 1980-81; Command and Staff College, Jaji, 1982-83. Career: Second Lieutenant, Nigerian Army, 1971; Acting Commander, 19 Infantry Battalion, Omoku, 1971-73; Brigade Major, Brigade of Guards, NA, 1975-76; Cadets Brigade Commander, Nigerian Defence Academy, Kaduna, 1984-87; Military Governor, Katsina State, 1987-88; Military Governor, Kaduna State, 1988-90; National Security Advisor, 2006-10. Commentary: Abdullahi Mukhtar was a very well respected officer, notably for standing up to dictator General Sani Abacha in 1995 on the treatment of coup plotters. He was also vocal against the detentions of Olusegun Obasanjo and the older Umaru Yar’Adua, which endeared him to future president Obasanjo. In September 2009, it was made public that Mukhtar denied former minister Malam Nasiru El- Rufai’s application for a new passport in London. In March 2010, he was sacked as security chief by the then Acting President Goodluck Jonathan.
    Major General Abdullahi Sarki Mukhtar

    General Lawrence Onoja
    Education: St Francis College, Otukpo; St Augustine's Teachers' College, Lafia; Nigerian Defence Academy, Kaduna; MONS Officers Cadet School, Aldershot, United Kingdom, 1968; Warminster and Junior Staff College, UK, 1973; Oklahoma State University, United States, 1975-79. Career: Accounts Clerk, Commercial Bank, 1967; Teacher, Nigerian Military Secondary School, Zaria, 1967-68; Commander, 3rd Infantry Battalion, Itu, 1967-70; Staff Officer, Army Headquarters, 1973-75; Instructor, Command and Staff College, Jaji, 1979-84; Military Defence Advisor, Nigerian Embassy, Cairo, Egypt, 1984-85; Principal Staff Officer, Lagos, 1985-86; Military Governor, Plateau State, 1986-87; Military Governor, Katsina State, 1988-89; retired from the military, 1998; prepared People's Democratic Party (PDP) blueprint, Way Forward, 2000; lost gubernatorial election to Akame, 2003; member, Umaru Yar'Adua/Goodluck Jonathan election team, 2007. Commentary: Onoja was one of the ‘Babangida boys’, a group of young officers clustered around the former dictator while he was in power. He was also very close to the Abacha family. In June 2008, he learned he was one of a few politicians marked for assassination. An Idoma from Benue State, he was briefly arrested for participating in a coup plot against Sani Abacha.
    General Lawrence Onoja

    Bode Ibiyinka George
    Career: Chairman, Board of the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), 1999-03; Director General, Yar’Adua-Jonathan Presidential Campaign Organisation, 2001; National Vice-Chairman, People's Democratic Party (PDP), South West, 2001-08; jailed, 2009. Commentary: Bode George's time as Chairman of the NPA was riddled with accusations of corruption and mismanagement. Over 800 million naira disappeared from the NPA coffers during the time he ran the agency. His daughter later paid N80 million for the house of Alhaji Alhaji, a former Permanent Secretary of the Minister of Finance. On 7 August 2008, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) arrested George for crimes including the illegal award of contracts. He was found guilty in October 2009 and sentenced to two years in prison.
    Bode Ibiyinka George

    Major General Mohammed Abdullahi
    Career: Director General, Nigerian Security Organisation; Director of Military Intelligence; Managing Director, Atoto Press, Ilorin; National Security Advisor, Government of General Abdusalami Abubakar, 1998-99; Chief of Staff under Olusegun Obasanjo, 1999-2007; Chief of Staff (re-appointed by Umaru Yar'Adua), 2007-08. Commentary: Mohammed Abdullahi has been involved in Nigerian politics since the 1970s. He was a key member of the Murtala Mohammed-led group which in 1975 overthrew Yakubu 'Jack' Gowon (1966-75). Other members were Mohammed Buhari and Ibrahim Babangida, both of whom went on to become heads of state. Olusegun Obasanjo was Mohammed’s deputy in 1975, becoming head of state after his assassination. When he became president in 1999 he appointed Abdullahi as his Chief of Staff. Abdullahi served in the position for all 8 years of Obasanjo’s presidency and the first year of Yar'Adua’s, until he was forced to retire in a purge of suspected Obasanjo loyalists.
    Major General Mohammed Abdullahi

    Lt General Luka Nyeh Yusuf
    Career: Commissioned, Nigerian Army Corps, Artillery, 1975; Chief of Staff, Armed Forces of Liberia (AFL); Chief of Army Staff, 2007-08. Commentary: In February 2008 Yusuf was made to retire from the Army after a scandal involving the sale to militants of arms from the Army Central Command Depot, Kaduna armory which was under his command. These guns were then used to kill soldiers. Yusuf had resisted attempts to get him to step aside, but later conceded when the Army Council okayed the retirement. In June of 2009 Yusuf died at the age of 56, in London, after a long illness.
    Lt General Luka Nyeh Yusuf

    Mr Sunday Gabriel Ehindero
    Career: Inspector General, Nigerian Police Force, 2005-07. Commentary: A few days before Sunday Ehindero left his job as Inspector General of Police in April 2007, 300 million naira was removed from the police budget office. The subsequent investigation led to President Umaru Yar'Adua ordering Ehindero’s arrest. Ehindero's term as Inspector General was rife with corruption and unsolved political assasinations in Lagos and Ekiti. Yet the former mathematician, turned lawyer, turned policeman was very vocal in denouncing corrupt practices within the force and the country, and fought to reduce gender bias against female recruits.
    Mr Sunday Gabriel Ehindero

    Chief Mike Okiro
    Commentary: The third in a line of inspector generals accused of corruption, Mike Okiro was mentioned in a name and shame list of bad debtors, released by the Central Bank in July 2009. The 166 million naira loan he received from Lead Bank added to the troubles that brought the bank down. Okiro said he used the money to procure a pipeline contract. Okiro was the first ever Igbo to become Inspector General of Police. He retired in 2009.
    Chief Mike Okiro

    Mr Bode Agusto
    Married to Edna Agusto with 5 children Education: University of Lagos, 1977; qualified as a chartered accountant, 1981. Career: National Service, NYSC Program, 1977; PriceWaterhouseCoopers (then Price Waterhouse), 1978-91; Founder and CEO, Agusto & Co Limited, 1992-2003; Director General & Special Advisor on Budget Matters, Budget Office, 2003-07. Commentary: In 2001, Nigeria’s Security and Exchange Commission licensed Agusto's company as the first credit rating agency in Nigeria. He was to be made a Minister in 2007 but was disqualified by a senate committee which found him imperious and arrogant.
    Mr Bode Agusto

    Governor Ibrahim Shekarau
    Education: Gidan Makama Primary School; Aminu Kano Commercial College, 1972-76; National Youth Service Corps, Imo State, 1977-78. Career: Various teaching positions, 1978-92; Deputy Director of Education, Bichi Zonal Education Area, Kano, 1992-93; Director, Planning, Research and Statistics, Ministry of Education Headquarters, 1993-94; Director General, Ministry of Education and Youth Development, Kano, 1994-95; Director General, Ministry of Water Resources, Rural and Community Development, Kano, 1995-97; Director General, Ministry of Education, 1997; Permanent Secretary, Administration and General Services Directorate, 1997-2000; Permanent Secretary, Civil Service Commission Kano, 2000; Chief Lecturer, Mathematics, Kano State College of Art, Science and Remedial Studies, 2000-01; Governor, Kano State, 2003 to date. Commentary: Shekarau was businessman Aminu Dantata’s secretary before he became governor of Kano State in 2003. He ran under the All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP) and received very strong support from ANPP presidential candidate General Muhammadu Buhari and Former Vice-President Atiku Abubakar. Shekarau was adamantly opposed to polio eradication efforts in his state, saying they were a ploy to render Muslim women infertile. He won re-election in 2007, the first governor of Kano State to do so.
    Governor Ibrahim Shekarau

    Chief Tony Anenih
    Education: Government School, Uromi; Scotland Yard Training School, United Kingdom; International Police Academy, Washington, United States; Administrative Staff College, 1975. Career: President, Benin Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture, 1978-84; Chairman, Social Democratic Party, 1991-93; Member, People's Democratic Party (PDP) Presidential Policy Advisory Committee, 1999; Minister for Works, 1999-2003; Chairman, Board of the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), 2009 to date. Career: Known as 'Mr Fix-it', Tony Anenih has made his mark as one of Nigeria's most flexible politicians and the ultimate political survivor - he has served every military and civilian regime since Shehu Shagari became President in 1979. He was close to President Olusegun Obasanjo and was a confidant of his military predecessor, General Sani Abacha, for whom he lobbied against sanctions at the Commonwealth Summit in Edinburgh, Scotland in 1997. He fell from favour briefly under Obasanjo, after he supported Peter Odilli and was voted out of the PDP. He was reinstated by Umaru Musa Yar'Adua when he was appointed Chairman of the NPA in 2009.
    Chief Tony Anenih

    Lieutenant General Owoye Azazi
    Education: Government College, Bomadi, 1968. Career: Nigerian Army, 1974-08; Director of Military Intelligence, 2003; Chief of Army Staff, 2006-08. Commentary: After a long career in the Nigerian Army, Azazi was appointed Chief of Army Staff by Olusegun Obasanjo in 2006. He was initally kept on by Umaru Yar'Adua but then replaced by Air Marshal Paul Dike in 2008. It is possible that he will return to take up another high profile role now that Goodluck Jonathan is in charge.
    Lieutenant General Owoye Azazi

    Major General Luke Aprezi
    Career: Officer, Nigerian Army; Chief of Operations, Nigerian Army; Commander ECOMOG; Force Commander, African Union Mission in Sudan (AMIS); member of the Aaron team, 2009 to date. Commentary: In late 2006, as Commander of the AMIS peacekeeping force, Aprezi recommended that the disarming of the Janjaweed ‘be started immediately’. He also reported that the Sudanese government continued to arm the Janjaweed. In late 2009, he was named a member of the Aaron team, appointed by the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND) to negotiate on behalf of the Delta.
    Major General Luke Aprezi

    Chief Timipre Sylva
    Education: St Paul’s Primary School, Okpoma; Ajeromi Central School, Lagos; University of Port Harcourt; National Youth Service, Shell Petroleum Development Company, Delta State. Career: Executive Secretary, National Ministry Business Council, Port Harcourt, 1991; Rivers State House of Assembly, 1991-92; private business, 1992-96; founding member, United Nigeria Congress Party, 1996-98; Political Advisor, Governor Diepreye Alamieyeseigha, 1998-02; Special Assistant, Minister of State for Petroleum Resources and Energy, 2004-07; Governor, Bayelsa State, 2007 to date.
    Chief Timipre Sylva

    Edwin Kiagbodo Clark
    Education: African Church School, Effurun, 1939; Native Authority School, Okrika, 1940; Native Authority School, Akugbene, 1940-45; Holborn College of Law, United Kingdom, 1961-64 Career: Headmaster, Local Authority School, Ofoni, Western Ijaw; Headmaster, Local Authority School, Bomadi, 1954; Headmaster, Secondary Modern School, Bomadi, 1955-57; Assistant Community Development Officer, 1957-61; Director, Asaba Textile Mill 1967; Commissioner for Education, Mid-Western State, 1968-71; Commissioner for Finance and Establishment, Bendel State, 1972-75; Minister for Information, 1975; Chairman of Council and Pro-Chancellor, University of Benin, 1970-75; Director, Bendel Brewery, 1972-74; Chairman, Bendel Line, 1973-74; joined the National Party of Nigeria (NPN), 1979; Pro-Chancellor, University of Technology, Minna, 1983; Senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1979-83; Leader, Delta State Elders' Forum. Commentary: Still a prominent player in Nigerian regional politics and an ally of President Goodluck Jonathan, Edwin Clark is Chairman of the Delta State Elders' Forum and has campaigned for Ijaw rights in the ethnically volatile Niger Delta. He has been openly resentful of the influence on the region of the Itsekiri, who were favoured under colonial rule in spite of their relatively small numbers. In 2007, he openly opposed the election of Emmanuel Uduaghan as Governor of Delta State on ethnic grounds, and he has spoken in support of loosening the region's federalist ties.
    Edwin Kiagbodo Clark

    Alhaji Attahiru Dalhatu Bafarawa
    Career: Founder, United Nigeria Congress Party (UNCP), 1997; Founder, All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP), 1998; Governor of Sokoto State, 1999-2007; Founder, Democratic People's Party (DPP), 2006; DPP presidential candidate, 2007 elections. Commentary: A former local government councillor in charge of education, Attahiru Bafarawa's career started comparatively slowly with an unsuccessful run for the House of Representatives in 1979. His election as Governor of Sokoto State was on the platform of the ANPP. Bafarawa is best known for introducing Sharia courts to Sokoto State and for the unaccountable depletion of his government accounts. He was arrested in 2008 on money laundering and corruption charges. A panel in Sokoto indicted him in October 2009 and ordered that he and his aides return a missing 2.9 billion naira (US$19.3million).
    Alhaji Attahiru Dalhatu Bafarawa

    Dr Olusegun Mimiko
    Education: St Joseph's College, Ondo, 1966-70; Higher School Certificate, Gboluji Grammar School, Ile Oluji, 1971-72; BSc Health Sciences, University of Ife, 1972-76; MBA, 1976-80. Career: House Officer, Ondo State Health Management Board, 1980-81; Nigerian Naval College, Port Harcourt, 1981-82; Medical Officer, General Hospital, Ondo, 1982; Medical Officer, Apagun Clinic/ Acting Medical Director, Alleluyah Hospital, Lagos, 1983-84; Ondo State Health Management Board, 1985; Founder, MONA Mediclinic, 1986; Commissioner for Health and Social Services, Ondo State, 1992-93; Commissioner for Health, Ondo State, 1999-2002; Secretary to the State Government, Ondo State, 2003-05; Minister for Housing and Urban Development, 2005-06; Governor, Ondo State, 2007 to date. Commentary: When he ran for election in 2007, Mimiko was very popular in Ondo State and seen as a rising star in the feisty, and comparatively new, Labour Party. People's Democratic Party (PDP) candidate Olusegun Agagu's initial victory came as a shock to the public and led to a tribunal. On 25 July, the Ondo State Election Petition Tribunal in Akure sacked Agagu after discounting invalid votes in three local government areas. The Tribunal found that Agagu had won 128,669 votes, against Mimiko's 198,269 votes. The Chairman, Justice Garba Nabaruma, declared Mimiko the victor.
    Dr Olusegun Mimiko

    Mr Onyema Ugochukwu
    Education: BSc Economics, University of Nigeria, Nsukka. Career: Economic Research Assistant, Central Bank of Nigeria; Economic Analyst, the Business Times; Editor, the Business Times, 1977-82; Editor, West Africa Magazine, 1983; Editor in Chief, Daily Times of Nigeria; Media Consultant, Dow Jones Financial News Service; Special Advisor on Communications to Olusegun Obasanjo, 1998-2006; Executive Chairman, Niger Delta Development Commission, 2000-04. Commentary: Ugochukwu was part of a group of journalists, intellectuals, business people, retired officers and career politicians who populated the Obasanjo camp in the late 1990s; at one point he was even tipped for the post of Minister of Information. Ugochukwu was the People's Democratic Party (PDP) gubernatorial candidate in the 2007 Abia State elections, but was defeated by Theodore Orji of the All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP) after a protracted and hotly contested race. During the elections, there was an attempt on Ugochukwu's life, and one of his bodyguards was killed.
    Mr Onyema Ugochukwu

    Mr Patrick Utomi
    Education: St Thomas’ School, Kano, 1960-62; Our Lady of Fatima Schol, Gusau, 1962-66; Christ the King College, Onitsha, 1967; Loyola College, Ibadan, 1968-71; BSc Mass Communications, University of Nigeria, Nsukka; University of Indiana, United States. Career: Chairman/CEO, Patike Communications, 1982-83; Special Assistant to the President on Political Affairs, 1983; Chairman/CEO, Utomapp Holdings, 1984-86; Assistant General Manager, Volkswagen Nigeria, 1986-89; Deputy Managing Director, Volkswagen Nigeria, 1989-93; Director, Lagos Business School; Chairman, Platinum Bank, 2000-05; Vice-Chairman, Bank PHB, 2006 to date. Commentary: Although unsuccessful, Utomi's 2007 presidential campaign broke with tradition by focusing on issues and refusing to engage in political violence. The support he garnered was an indication of Nigerians' frustration with the contemporary brand of lethally corrupt politics.
    Mr Patrick Utomi

    Mr Anthony Olufunsho Williams (Funsho Williams)
    Education: St Paul's Catholic School, Ebute Metta; St Gregory's College, Lagos; BSc Civil Engineering, University of Lagos, 1968; New Jersey Institute of Technology, United States. Career: Commissioner for Works, Lagos State. Commentary: Williams left the Lagos civil service in 1991 to pursue a career in politics. He initially joined the United National Congress Party before moving to the Alliance for Democracy. He was an unsuccessful gubernatorial candidate in the 1999 Lagos State elections, after which he switched his allegiance to the People's Democratic Party. He ran for governor a second time in 2003, but lost to the incumbent, Bola Tinubu. Williams was murdered at his Lagos home on July 2006, while his wife was away on holiday.
    Mr Anthony Olufunsho Williams (Funsho Williams)

    Mr Chris Nwabueze Ngige
    Education: University of Nigeria, Nsukka. Career: Medical Officer, National Assembly Clinic, 1980-82; Physician to the Senate, 1983; Physician of Senate House/Federal Government Special Guest House, 1985-93; Consultant in charge, Federal Government State Clinic, the Presidency, Abuja, 1992-93; Consultant and Assistant Director, Federal Medical Centre, Federal Ministry of Health, Abuja, 1997-98; Member of the ministerial task force on the completion of the University of Nigeria Hospital (UNTH), Enugu State, 1996-98; Governor, Anambra State, 2003-06. Commentary: Ngige's governorship of Anambra State, in the Igbo dominated South East, was marred by a dispute with his political 'godfather' Chris Uba. In 2003, Uba’s political leverage was such that he could openly brag that he had rigged every election in the state, including that of Ngige. Ngige, he said, had agreed to hand him de facto control of the government, but reneged on the deal. Uba kidnapped him, forced him to ‘resign’ at gunpoint and attacked and destroyed part of Government House. Uba denied any direct involvement in the violence and claimed that all he did was implement the terms of his written contract with the Governor. It entitled him to ‘exact vengeance in such manner adjudged by him as fitting and adequate’, should the Governor fail to hand over control. In 2006, Ngige was replaced by Peter Obi. He remains active in Anambra politics and was an Action Congress candidate for the February 2010 state elections.
    Mr Chris Nwabueze Ngige

    Governor Peter Onwubuasi Obi
    Education: University of Nigeria, 1980-84. Career: Challenged Chris Ngige’s election as Governor of Anambra State, 2003; legal battles with Ngige, 2003-06; Governor, Anambra State, March 2006-November 06; impeached, November 2006; re-instated as Governor to finish original four year tenure, June 2007.
    Governor Peter Onwubuasi Obi

    Isa Yuguda
    Education: North East College of Arts and Science (NECAS), Maiduguri, 1974-76; Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, 1976-79; University of Jos, Plateau State, 1997-98. Career: Mortgage Manager, Federal Mortgage Bank, Bauchi Area Office, 1981-84; Credit Manager, Savannah Bank (Nig) Plc, Sokoto, 1986-87; Manager, Savannah Bank, Abuja, 1987-91; Acting General Manager, Inland Bank, 1991-92; Managing Director and Chief Executive, Inland Bank Plc, Nigeria, 1992-99; Managing Director and Chief Executive, NAL Merchant Bank Plc, 1999-2000; Minister of State for Transport, 2000-03; Ministry of Aviation, 2003-05; Governor, Bauchi State, 2007 to date. Commentary: Yuguda's marriage to President Umaru Musa Yar'Adua's daughter Nafisa and his subsequent joining of the ruling People's Democratic Party (PDP) did his political career no harm. As his profile rose, some proposed him as a candidate for Governor of the Central Bank and suggested that he could stand for Vice-President. He was born in Yuguda village, Bauchi, and has a bachelor's degree in economics and a master's degree in business administration (MBA). Yuguda is a former Aviation Minister and Managing Director of Inland Bank, now the troubled FinBank.
    Isa Yuguda

    Governor Adams Oshiomhole
    Education: Economics and Industrial Relations, Ruskin College, Oxford University, United Kingdom; National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies, Kuru. Career: Union Leader, Arewa Textiles Company, 1969; Trade Organiser, 1975-82; General Secretary, National Union of Textile Garment and Tailoring Workers of Nigeria, 1982; 4th President of the Nigerian Labour Congress, 1999 to date; Governor of Edo State, 2007 to date.
    Governor Adams Oshiomhole

    Elder Odion Magnus Ugbesia
    Education: BA, Political Science, University of Illinois, United States; Masters, International Relations, North Eastern Illinois University, USA. Career: Lecturer, Department of Political Science, University of Benin, 1987-89; Minister of State for Internal Affairs; Minister of Solid Minerals, 2003-06; Senator, Edo State, 2007 to date. Commentary: Odion Ugbesia was once an assistant of Chief Tony Anenih, one of the most powerful men in Edo State; one of Ugbesia's daughters married Anenih's son, Iriobe Anenih in 2008. Anenih wanted Ugbesia to stand as the People's Democratic Party (PDP) gubernatorial candidate for Edo State in 2007, but Olusegun Obasanjo supported the candidacy of Osariemen Osunbor, cousin of his late wife Stella.
    Elder Odion Magnus Ugbesia

    Mr Ibrahim Shema
    Education: Nasarawa Primary School, Katsina, 1964-67; Government Secondary School, Kafanchan, 1972-76; College of Arts, Science and Technology, Zaria, 1977-80; Ahmadu Bello University, 1980-83; B.L., Nigeria Law School, 1983-84; Masters of Business Administration, Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, 1994-98 Career: Chief Legal Executive, National Fertiliser Company Limited, 1984-85; Principal Partner, Shema, Oscar and Co Legal Practitioners, Lagos, 1985-87; Managing Director, Solidarity Holding Ltd, 1987-89; Managing Director, Tools Manufacturing Company Limited, Lagos, 1989; Principal, Shema S. Ibrahim and Co Legal Practitioners, Kaduna, 1991-99; Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice of Katsina State, 1999-03; Principal, Shema S. Ibrahim and Co Legal Practitioner, Kaduna, 2003-05; National Chairman, People's Democratic Party (PDP), 2005-06; Governor, Katsina State, 2007 to date.
    Mr Ibrahim Shema

    Mr Bola Ahmed Tinubu
    Education: St John's Primary School, Lagos; Children's Home School, Ibadan; Richard Daley College, Chicago, United States; Chicago State University, USA, 1977-79. Career: Auditing and Management Consultant, Deloitte Haskins and Sells; Senior Auditor, Mobil Producing Nigeria; Treasurer, Mobil Producing Nigeria; Senator, Lagos West, 1992; Governor, Lagos State, 1999-2007. Commentary: Tinubu continues to be a strong presence, both politically and financially, in the Action Congress Party. He wants to build a voting block in the south-west to boost his 2011 vice-presidential ambitions. His business interests include links to Lebanese multimillionaires Gilbert and George Chagoury, who have worked with most of the political and military class in Nigeria, including former Police Inspector General Muhammadu Dikko Yusufu and Sani Abacha.
    Mr Bola Ahmed Tinubu

    Governor Babatunde Raji Fashola
    Education: Sunny Fields Primary School, Adelabu, Surulere; Birch Freeman High School, Surulere; Igbobi College, Yaba; University of Benin, 1987; Nigerian Law School, Lagos, 1988-89. Career: Litigator, Sofunde, Osakwe & Belgore; Investing Partner, K.O. Tinubu and Company, 1993; Head Counsel, K.O. Tinubu and Company, 1994-02; Chief of Staff to Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, 2002; Governor, Lagos State, 2007 to date.
    Governor Babatunde Raji Fashola

    Chief Solomon Lar
    Education: Sudan United Mission School, Langtang, 1944-49; Sudan United Teachers' Training College, Gindiri, 1950-53; Ahmadu Bello University, 1966-70; Nigerian Law School, Lagos, 1971. Career: School teacher, 1954-55; Member, Federal House, 1959-64; Parliamentary Secretary, Ministry of Establishment, 1964-66; National Secretary, Nigeria Legal Aid Association, 1973; Chairman, Plateau State Manpower Development Panel, 1975; Chairman, African Continental Bank Ltd, 1976-79; Founder, Club 19, later Nigeria People's Party, 1977; First Civilian Governor and Chief Executive, Plateau State, 1979-83; Minister, Police Affairs, 1993; member, the group of 34; Chairman, the People's Democratic Party (PDP), 1998-2006; member, Action Congress, 2006 to date. Commentary: As a former PDP Chairman and Plateau State kingpin, Solomon Lar remains an important figure in Nigerian Politics. His support was key to Olusegun Obasanjo in 2002 as he helped deliver wavering delegates from the middle belt. 2006 saw him become disaffected by the divides emerging within the PDP, which he demonstrated by joining the Action Congress Party (ACP). He remains a high profile figure in Plateau State and heads a 15-member Federal Government special committee on the recurrent Jos crises.
    Chief Solomon Lar

    Justice Inumidun Akande
    Education: University of Lagos Career: Called to the bar, 1971; appointed to the bench, 1989; Chief Justice, Lagos, Sep 2009 to date. Commentary: In October 2007 Akande controversially struck out a report against Vice-President Atiku Abubakar and Otunba Fasawe, allowing Abubakar to contest the 2007 elections. The report, from a panel set up by President Olusegun Obasanjo, looked into Abubakar's misuse of the Petroleum Training Development Fund (PTDF). A respected jurist, she was sworn in as Lagos State’s 13th Chief justice in September 2009 and immediately announced that the state judiciary would adopt a ‘zero tolerance’ attitude towards corruption.
    Justice Inumidun Akande

    General (Rtd) Theophilus Yakubu Danjuma
    Education: Mons Officers Cadet Training School, Aldershot, United Kingdom; United States Special Welfare Centre, Fort Bragg, US; British Army Staff College, Camberley, UK. Career: Chief of Army Staff, 1978-79; Minister of Defence, 1999-2003; Chairman, South Atlantic Petroleum Ltd (SAPETRO), 2007 to date.
    General (Rtd) Theophilus Yakubu Danjuma

    Mr Tayo Aderinokun
    Education: Business Administration, University of Lagos; MBA, Graduate School of Management, University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), United States. Career: National Youth Service, Central Bank of Nigeria, Calabar, 1977-78; Credit and Relationship Manager, Chase Manhattan Bank Institute for International Banking, New York, 1982-83; Assistant General Manager, Prime Merchant Bank Ltd, 1988; Head of the Financial Services Division, Prime Merchant Bank Ltd, 1989; Founder, First Marina Trust Ltd, 1989-90; Deputy Managing Director, Guaranty Trust Bank Plc (GTB), 1990-2002; CEO, GTB, 2002 to date. Commentary: Aderinokun founded GTB in 1990 along with Fola Adeola. He became CEO of the bank after a boardroom coup pushed Adeola out. Under Aderinokun the bank has acquired a reputation for efficiency and aggressive growth. He is a confrontational businessman, making no apologies for his desire to see the bank become one of the biggest in Africa, not just Nigeria.
    Mr Tayo Aderinokun

    Mr Ken Nnamani
    Education: MBA, University of Ohio, United States. Career: Marketing Executive, Du Pont De Nemours International; Marketing Executive, Nova Chemicals International; Consultant, Maredec Limited; Senator, Enugu East, 2003-05; President, Senate, 2005-07; launched the Ken Nnamani Centre for Leadership and Development, May 2008. Commentary: Ken Nnamani succeeded Adolphus Wabara as Senate President after Wabara was accused of corruption. Nnamani's appointment came as a surprise as he was relatively new to the Senate and not well known in political circles. Nnamani has a difficult relationship with Olusegun Obasanjo. In 2006, he announced the Senate's decision to throw out an amendment to Nigeria's constitution that would have allowed Obasanjo to run for a third term.
    Mr Ken Nnamani

    General Yakubu Dan-Yumma Gowon (Jack)
    Education: St Bartholomew’s School, Wasasa, Zaria, 1939-49; School Certificate, Government College, Zaria, 1953; Royal Military Academy Sandhurst, United Kingdom, 1955-56. Career: Second Lieutenant; Adjutant, batallion, 1960; peacekeeping mission, Congo-Kinshasa, 1961-62; Lt-Colonel, 1963; Head of the Federal Military Government and Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces of Nigeria, 1966-75; Exile, 1975-83; Founder, the Yakubu Gowon Centre for Development Studies, Jos; Initiator, Nigeria Prays, 1997 to date.
    General Yakubu Dan-Yumma Gowon (Jack)

    Prince Adetokunbo Kayode
    Career: Senior Executive Assistant, NAL-Merchant Bank Ltd, 1988-90; Managing Partner and Founder, Kayode and Co, 1990-2007; Assistant Manager, Corporate Banking, Capital Merchant Bank Ltd, 1999-94; Founder, UTBs Properties Ltd, 1994; Senator, Federal Republic of Nigeria, 2003; Minister of Tourism, Culture and National Orientation, 2007-10; Minister of Defence, April 2010.
    Prince Adetokunbo Kayode

    Igwe Aja-Nwachukwu
    Education: University of Ibadan, 1970-72; MSc, Statistics, University of Ibadan, 1993-94; PhD, Economics, University of Calabar, 2001-04. Career: Education Officer, Ebonyi State Government, 1979-83; Lecturer in Business and Finance, Abia State University, 1984-05; Lecturer in Business and Finance, Ebonyi State University, 2006-07; Minister of Education, 2007-08. Commentary: Thought the worst Education Minister ever in Nigeria’s history. Succeeded by Sam Egwu.
    Igwe Aja-Nwachukwu

    Hajiya Halima Tayo Alao
    Education: MSc, Architecture, Ahmadu Bello University, 1981; MA, Public Administration, University of Ilorin, 2002-03. Career: Architect and Principal Architect, Kwara State Town Planning Authority, 1982-95; Kwara State Commissioner for Women, Kwara State Ministry, 1995-97; Director, Ministry for Women’s Affairs, Kwara State Ministry, 1997-03; Permanent Secretary, Kwara State Government, 2003-06; Minister of Environment and Housing, 2007-08.
    Hajiya Halima Tayo Alao

    Grace Ekpiwhre
    Education: Zoology, University of Lagos. Career: Bendel State Civil Service, 1972-89; various positions, Delta State Government, 1989-99; Head of the Civil Service, Delta State, Delta State Government, 2002-06; Chairman, Delta State Civil Service Commission, 2007; Minister of Science and Technology, 2007-08; Minister of State Works, Housing and Urban Development, 2008 to date
    Grace Ekpiwhre

    Diezani Allison-Madueke
    Education: BSc, Architecture, Howard University; MBA, Cambridge University; Architectural Intern, Charles Szoradi Architects. Career: Project Engineer, American Interior Builders, Washington; Design Coordinator, Furman Construction Management Inc, Rockville, United States; Project Manager, Facilities Planning and Development Department, Howard University; Head, Projects Unit, Shell Petroleum Development Co of Nigeria Ltd, Lagos, 1993-96; various positions (including Head of Corporate Issues Management), Shell, 1996-07; Minister of Transportation, 2007-08; Minister of Mines and Steel Development, 2008-10; appointed Minister of Petroleum Resources, 2010. Commentary: Madueke underwent investigation in 2008 for withdrawing US$263 million to pay contractors in December 2007. A parliamentary committee described the withdrawals as "hasty and lacking in transparency." She spoke out in favour of Goodluck Jonathan's assumption of presidential authority from Umaru Musa Yar'Adua, and was given the position of Minister of Petroleum Resources in Jonathan's new cabinet. Top priority for Allison-Madueke will be steering the Petroleum Industry Bill through the National Assembly. International oil companies hope that her early career with Shell (as head of External Relations in Nigeria) will make her sympathetic to their opposition to the Bill. Shell and ExxonMobil argue that it will render billions of dollars of investment unprofitable.
    Diezani Allison-Madueke

    Dr. Anthony Jerry Agada
    Education: St Joseph’s Primary School, Orokam, 1959-65; St Francis Secondary School, Otukpo, 1971-74; Kaduna Polytechnic and National Technical Teachers’ College, Lagos; University of Exeter, United Kingdom, 1979-81; Master of Commerce, Strathclyde University, Scotland, 1984; PhD, Staton University, United States, 2004. Career: Teacher, Business Education, Government College, Keffi, 1974-77; Teacher, Government College, Makurdi, 1977-79; Youth Service, Army Day Secondary School, Abakpa Enugu, 1984-85; Head of the Department of Business Studies, Government College Makurdi, 1985-87; Vice-Principal, Government College Makurdi, 1987-88; Substantive College Principal, 1988, promoted to Principal (Special Grade), 1991-92; Guidance Counselor, Teaching Service Board, 1993; Principal (Special Grade), Government College Utonkon, 1993-96; Executive Secretary, Benue State Examinations Board, 1996-99; Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Information, Culture, Youth and Sports, 1999-00; Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Education, 2000-01; Ministry of Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, 2001-06; Permanent Secretary (Political), Cabinet Office, February-September 2006; Minister of State for Education, 2007-08; President, Association of Nigerian Authors, to date Commentary: Agada was one of a group of ministers sacked by President Umaru Musa Yar'Adua in November 2008. As Minster of State for Education, Agada, along with Minister of Education Igwe Aja-Nwachuku, angered the President by not reacting swiftly enough to a strike by the Nigerian Union of Teachers in early 2008. Agada was also in trouble for his involvement in a house purchase scandal.
    Dr. Anthony Jerry Agada

    Aderemi Babalola
    Education: Prospect High School, Ibadan; Oyo State College of Arts and Science; University of Ibadan; Lagos Business School. Career: General Manager, Zenith Bank; Deputy General Manager and Divisional Head of Corporate Planning and Group Coordination/Executive Director, First Bank of Nigeria Plc, 2001-07; Minister of State for Finance, 2007 to date.
    Aderemi Babalola

    Professor Charles Soludo
    Married to Nonye Soludo, four children Education: BA, MSc Economics, PhD, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, 1984-80; Career: Appointed Professor of Economics, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, 1998; Visiting Professor, Swarthmore College, Pennsylvania, United States, 1999; joined federal government, 2003; Chief Economic Advisor to President Olusegun Obasanjo; Chief Executive, National Planning Commission; Governor of the Central Bank, 2004-09. Commentary: Soludo's planned and announced redomination excercise for the naira was prevented by Umaru Musa Yar'Adua. In 2008 he appeared before an anti-corruption panel set up to investigate the African Finance Institution, an institution he established to mirror the IFC, the financing arm of the World Bank.
    Professor Charles Soludo

    Betty Mould-Iddrisu
    Education: LLB, University of Ghana, Legon, 1973-76; LLM, London School of Economics, United Kingdom, 1978; BL, Ghana School of Law. Career: Copyright Administrator, Head of Industrial Property Law Division, and Head of International Law Division, Ministry of Justice, Ghana, 1978-2003; Co-founder, African Women Lawyers Association, 1999; Director and Chief Legal Advisor, Legal and Constitutional Affairs Division, Commonwealth Secretariat, London, UK, 2003-2009; Minister for Justice and Attorney General, 2009-11; Minister of Education, 2011 to date Commentary: Betty Mould-Iddrisu is Ghana's first female Attorney General and was once tipped to be President John Atta Mills's running mate in the 2008 presidential elections. She is married to Mahama Iddrisu, who served as an advisor and Defence Minister under the Jerry Rawlings government. According to some commentators, Rawlings's wife Nana Konadu encouraged President Mills to appoint Mould-Iddrisu as Attorney General. Some National Democratic Congress (NDC) party members have called for Mould-Iddrisu to take up a different position in government. They are angered by her failure to prosecute former New Patriotic Party (NPP) officials for alleged corruption during their time in office.
    Betty Mould-Iddrisu

    Alex Tettey-Enyo
    Education: Volta District Secondary School, Presbyterian Secondary and Wesley College, 1954-60; BA in Education, University of Ghana, Legon, 1965. Career: Graduate Teacher, Assistant Headteacher and Headteacher, Ghanata Secondary School, Dodowa, 1966-90; Director, Ghana Education Service (GES), Dangame East District, 1990; District Secretary, Dangame East District Assembly, 1990; Director, Secondary Education, GES, 1991-94; Director, Manpower and Training, GES, 1995-96; Deputy Director General, GES, 1996-2000; Acting Director, GES, 2001; MP for Ada Constituency, 2005-08, 2009; Education Minister, 2009-11.
    Alex Tettey-Enyo

    Akua Sena Dansua
    Education: Mawuli School, 1969-1976; Graduate Diploma in Communication Studies, University of Ghana; Executive Masters in Governance and Leadership, Ghana Institute of Management and Public Administration (GIMPA). Career: Reporter, Deputy Features Editor, Weekly Spectator, Ghana; District Chief Executive, Provisional National Defence Council (PNDC) Government, Kpando; Electoral Assistant, Electoral Commission, 1979-80; Chief Reporter, Nigerian Reporter, 1983-87; Technical Advisor, National Council on Women and Development; Media Consultant, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), 1995; Minister of Lands and Natural Resources, 2009-10; Minister for Youth and Sports, 2010-11; Minister for Tourism, 2001 to date. Commentary: In 2010, Dansua became Ghana's first female Minister for Youth and Sports. In 2010, with the World Cup in South Africa fast approaching, Dansua launched a fundraising campaign and website for the Ghana squad, and called for the support of private companies and media outlets.
    Akua Sena Dansua

    Hon Dr Joe Oteng-Adjei
    Education: Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, 1977-80; PhD, Power Systems, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, Canada, 1987-90; MBA, Finance and Macro Economics, Cranfield University, Bedford, United Kingdom, 1998-99. Career: Planning Engineer, Acres International Ltd, Niagara Falls, Canada, 1990-91; Director of Power, Ministry of Energy, Ghana, 1991-2001; Technical Advisor, Energy Commission, 2001-02; Senior Lecturer, Director of Graduate Studies, Coordinator for executive masters programmes, Dean of Graduate Studies, Director, and Academic Registrar, Ghana Institute of Management and Public Administration (GIMPA), Accra, 2002-09; Minister of Energy, 2009 to date. Consultancy: Utility Tariff Review, Electricity and Waste, 2006; Millennium Challenge Account, 2006; Energy Commission, 2007; Public Utilities Regulatory Commission, 2007; West Africa Power Pool, 2007.
    Hon Dr Joe Oteng-Adjei

    Collins Dauda
    Education: O Levels and A Levels, Mim Secondary School, 1973-81. Career: Teacher, Kukuom Agric Secondary School, 1986-86; Teacher, Ahafoman Secondary School, 1986-92; MP, Asutifi South Constituency, NDC, 1993-2001; Vice President, 1994-96, Chairman, 1997-2000, Lands and Forestry Committee; NDC Regional Chairman, Brong Ahafo Region, 2002-04; Minister of Lands and Natural Resources, 2009-11.
    Collins Dauda

    Joe Kwashie Gidisu
    Education: Teacher's Certificate, Kibi's Men's Training College, 1967-71; Specialist Certificate, Advanced Teacher Training College, Winneba, 1975-77; MA, Development Studies, Institute of Social Studies, the Hague, Holland. Career: Teacher, Bontibor LA Primary School, 1971-73; Teacher, Dormaa Secondary School, 1977-78; Regional Secretary, Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT), 1981-86; National Coordinator, Membership Education Department, GNAT, 1988-2000; MP for North Tongu Constituency, 2000-04; MP for Central Tongu, 2004-09; Minister for Roads and Highways, 2009 to date.
    Joe Kwashie Gidisu

    Mike Allen Hammah
    Education: Building Technology, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), 1976-80; MBA in Finance, Central University College, 2007-08. Career: Regional Quantity Surveyor, Public Works Department (PWD), Tamale, 1980-81; Regional Quantity Surveyor, Odail and Partners Metallurgical Training Complex, Ajoakuta-Kwara State, Nigeria, 1981-85; Chief Quantity Surveyor, PWD, 1986-88; Partner/Technical Director, Fonani Services Limited, 1988-90; Deputy Minister for Roads and Transport, National Democratic Congress (NDC) Government, 1996-2000; Principal Consultant, Strategic Heritage Service, 2004-09; Minister of Transport, 2009-11; Minister of Lands and Resources, 2011 to date.
    Mike Allen Hammah

    Anthony Blair (Tony)
    Education: Fettes College, Edinburgh. St John's College, Oxford. Commentary: Anthony Blair is a barrister and was a member of Parliament for Sedgefield in Britain's North-East from 1983 to 2007. Tony Blair was elected Labour Party leader in 1994 and became Prime Minister in 1997. After winning another two general elections, he stepped down in July 2007. He was succeeded by his Chancellor of the Exchequer, Gordon Brown, who was elected Labour Party leader unopposed. In June 2007, Blair was appointed Middle East Peace Envoy by the United Nations, EU, United States and Russia.
    Anthony Blair (Tony)

    Gibson Jama Sibanda
    Career: Fitter and train driver with National Railways of Zimbabwe (then Rhodesia Railways), 1965-82; Secretary for welfare of the Zimbabwe African People’s Union,1976-79; President, Railways Association of Enginemen, 1982-84; President, Zimbabwe Amalgamated Railwaymen’s Union, 1984-88; First Vice-President, Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions, 1988; President, Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions, 1989-99; Vice-President, Movement for Democratic Change, 1999-05; Member of Parliament for Nkulumane, 2000-08; Vice-President, Movement for Democratic Change-Mutambara, 2006-2010; Minister of State in the Deputy Prime Minister’s Office, 2009-2010. Commentary: Though a senior member of Joshua Nkomo’s Zimbabwe African People’s Union in the 1970s, Sibanda made his name as President of the powerful Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions when he formed a formidable team with Secretary-General, Morgan Tsvangirai. Together with Tsvangirai, Sibanda was instrumental in weaning the labour movement from the Zimbabwe African National Union- Patriotic Front, leading President Mugabe to consider the two, Sibanda and Tsvangirai, as his arch-enemies since they controlled the most powerful urban constituency, the workers. His star continued to rise with that of Tsvangirai and he became Vice-President of the Movement for Democratic Change at its formation in 1999. He was elected Member of Parliament for Nkulumane the following year beating Dumiso Dabengwa one of the most powerful people in both ZANU-PF and the former ZAPU. His fortunes began to tumble when he joined Welshman Ncube to break-away from Tsvangirai in 2005. He lost his parliamentary seat in 2008 and has been in the political doldrums since. Sibanda was appointed Minister of State in Deputy Prime Minister Arthur Mutambara’s office where he is in charge of reconciliation and national integration. Sibanda’s position is very precarious as he is reported to be holding the ministerial post unconstitutionally since he does not have a seat in Parliament. Reports say Welshman Ncube, the man who broke away with him from Tsvangirai but sidelined him to bring in outsider Arthur Mutambara to lead the party, is giving Sibanda a hard time. He is reported to be relying more and more on his former colleague, Morgan Tsvangirai. Tsvangirai is reported to have pledged to support Sibanda if he was nominated by his party as Speaker of Parliament but the party decided to field Paul Themba Nyathi instead arguing that they could not field Sibanda because of his poor health. Sibanda was reported to be suffering from some form of cancer. Nyathi lost after Tsvangirai decided to field his own candidate Lovemore Moyo . Observers said Sibanda had not been the same since the death of his wife Zodwa in December 2003. She is said to have been a pillar of strength in his life. Zodwa was both a political and human rights activist and was a member of the highly vociferous Women of Zimbabwe Arise (WOZA). He died on 24 August 2010.
    Gibson Jama Sibanda

    John Landa Nkomo
    Ethnicity: Ndebele Career: member African National Congress, 1958-59; joined National Democratic Party, 1960; joined the Zimbabwe African People’s Union, 1961-; arrested and detained at Gonakudzingwa for two years, 1966-68; joined the African National Council becoming deputy secretary-general, 1971; attended Geneva Conference as part of Joshua Nkomo’s delegation, 1976; seriously injured in parcel bomb that killed Jason Ziyapapa Moyo, 1977; Member of Parliament, Matabeleland North, 1980-1985; deputy Minister of Industry and Energy, 1981; Minister of State in the Prime Minister’s office responsible to the Deputy Prime Minister, 1982-84; fired from government as one of only two remaining ZAPU members, 1984; Member of Parliament for Tsholotsho, 1985-1990 ; Minister of Labour, Manpower Planning and Social Welfare, 1988-1995; Member of Parliament for Bulawayo North, 1990-1995; re-elected Member of Parliament for Bulawayo North, 1995-2000; Minister of Local Government and Rural Development, 1995; Minister of Local Government and National Housing, 1997; Minister of Home Affairs, 2000; Minister of State in the President’s Office responsible for Special Affairs, 2002; Speaker of Parliament, 2005-2008; Minister of State in the President’s Office responsible for National Healing, Reconciliation and Integration, 2009; Vice-President, 2009 up till his death in January 2013.
    John Landa Nkomo

    Andry Rajoelina (Andry TGV)
    This week's political agreement (see Pointer) enables Andry Rajoelina to consolidate his position as leader of the transitional regime in Madagascar and gives him international recognition. Many remain sceptical about his brand of populism. At 34, Rajoelina is constitutionally too young to be President but his youthful enthusiasm may have helped win support from the young; many older people doubt his political abilities. Born to a wealthy family on 30 May 1974, Rajoelina was a disc jockey at various clubs in Antananarivo; he soon moved into promotion and then started Viva Radio. Ambition and energy earned him the nickname 'TGV' (train à grande vitesse, France's high speed train). Rajoelina used these initials in his campaign: Tanora malaGasy Vonona (Determined Malagasy Youth). Elected Mayor of Antananarivo in 2007, Rajoelina saw relations with President Marc Ravalomanana's government quickly sour. It closed Viva Radio after the station broadcast an interview with ex-President Didier Ratsiraka. Street demonstrations followed in the capital and government forces shot over 100 protesters. After weeks of protest, Ravalomanana handed power to the army, paving the way for Rajoelina's provisional government. For now, he has the support of much of the army.
    Andry Rajoelina (Andry TGV)

    Ms Nancy Birdsall
    Biography: Research Assistant, Overseas Liaison Committee of the American Council on Education, 1969-70; Project Executive, Overseas Liaison Committee of the American Council on Education, 1971; Project Director, TransCentury Corporation, 1971-72; Social Science Analyst, Smithsonian Institution, 1972-76; World Bank: Economist, Development Economics Department, 1979-82; Staff Director, World Development Report 1984, 1983-84; Senior Economist, Country Policy Department, 1982-84; Chief, Policy and Research Division, Health and Nutrition Dept,1984-87; Chief, Population and Human Resources Operations Division, 1987-90; Chief, Environment Division, Latin America Region, 1990-91; Director, Policy Research Dept, 1991-93 Executive Vice President, Inter-American Development Bank, 1993-98; Senior Associate and Director, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, 1998-2001; President, Center for Global Development, 2001 to date.
    Ms Nancy Birdsall

    Alhaji Mahmud Yayale Ahmed (Mr Civil Service)
    Married with seven children Education: BSc Political Science, Ahmadu Bello University, Kaduna State, 1976; MPA,1975. Career: Joined Bauchi State Civil Service, 1977; Deputy Secretary to Bauchi State Ministry of Animal Health and Forestry Resources, 1982; Acting Permanent Secretary to the Ministry of Rural Development and Cooperatives, 1983; joined the Federal Government Civil Service, 1986; Member of the 1988 Ministerial Committee on Civil Service Reforms; appointed Head of Civil Service, 2000; Defence Minister, 2007-08; named as the Secretary to the Federal Government, Sep 2008-11. Commentary: Ahmed took over as Secretary to the Federal Government from Babagana Kingibe, who presidential aides thought was more interested in becoming President than in being secretary to one. In contrast, Ahmed has been very quiet, perhaps due to difficulties encountered in his role. The First Lady farmed out many of his duties to others, and a meeting Ahmed had with Olusegun Obasanjo did not help matters. The Yar'Aduas greatly mistrusted Obasanjo.
    Alhaji Mahmud Yayale Ahmed (Mr Civil Service)

    Colonel Mengistu Haile Mariam
    Career: Graduated from the Oletta Academy, 1966; Sent for advanced military training in America, 1966-71; instrumental, though in a minor position, in the coup against Haile Selassie, 1974; took control of the Derg, 1977; Chairman of the Derg and Head of State of Ethiopia, 1977-1987; President of the People's Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, 1987-1991; regime overthrown by TPLF forces in 1991; has lived in lavish exile in Zimbabwe since fleeing Ethiopia in 1991; found guilty in absentia of genocide in 2006 and sentenced to life imprisonment, 2007, this sentence was changed to the death penalty after an appeal, 2008
    Colonel Mengistu Haile Mariam

    Robert Gabriel Mugabe
    Ethnicity: Shona - Zezuru Son of Gabriel Mugabe and Bona Shonhiwa Career: National Democratic Party (NDP), 1960; Acting Secretary-General of the Zimbabwe African People’s Union (ZAPU) formed after ban of NDP 1961-62; Founding Member and Secretary General of the Zimbabwe African National Union (ZANU) following split from ZAPU, 1963-75; detained 1964-74; leader of external wing of ZANU, 1975; ZANU President, 1977 to date; Prime Minister of Zimbabwe, 1980-87; President of Zimbabwe, 1987 to date; Chairman, Non-Aligned Movement, 1986; Chairman, Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting, 1991; Chairman, Frontline States, 1992; Chairman, G15 group of countries, 1995; Chairman, World Solar Summit, 1995; Chairman, Southern African Development Community's Organisation on Defence, Politics and Security, 1996-2001; Chairman, Organisation of African Unity (now African Union), 1997; Chairman, Common Market of Eastern and Southern Africa COMESA), 2009. Commentary: Robert Mugabe is the only ruler Zimbabweans have known since Independence in 1980. His reign saw the country prosper in the first decade, slip in the second and collapse in the third. Calls for him to step down were made as early as 1992, soon after the introduction of the International Monetary Fund-sponsored Economic Structural Adjustment Programme, which saw subsidies lifted and thousands of workers laid off amid one of the worst droughts in Zimbabwe’s history, but Mugabe has miraculously survived, surprising even his own lieutenants. President Mugabe has ruled the country with an iron fist, using violence as part of his election campaign, from the first post-Independence elections in 1985 when opposition Zimbabwe African People’s Union (ZAPU) supporters were beaten up and made to vote for his Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front. Thousands of innocent civilians were killed in Matebeleland and Midlands in the five-year civil strife from 1982-87, which is now commonly known as Gukurahundi, meaning to wipe the country of 'dissidents'. There was more widespread and systematic violence at the 2000 parliamentary elections, and again at the 2002 presidential elections after the formation of the Movement for Democratic Change, led by former trade unionist Morgan Tsvangirai. Surprisingly the crucial 2008 parliamentary and presidential elections were very peaceful until Mugabe lost, with 43 percent of the vote against Tsvangirai’s 48 percent; ZANU-PF also lost its parliamentary majority (99 seats to 110 for the opposition). The run-up to the second round of elections was a bloody campaign, which left close to 200 people dead, forcing Tsvangirai to pull out of the race. Initially regarded as a revolutionary who wanted to keep the party leadership youthful (and as a man who would not tolerate corruption when ZANU-PF introduced a leadership code in 1984), Mugabe slowly turned into a dictator. Die-hard opponents like Edgar Tekere, his former Secretary General, and later Eddison Zvobgo were got rid of. Mugabe has retained power by rewarding loyalists and making sure that there is no logical successor at any one time. There are now two major factions within ZANU-PF, one led by former army commander, Solomon Mujuru, and the other by former intelligence chief Emmerson Mnangagwa. Mnangagwa seems to have the upper hand, but Tsvangirai's popularity raises doubts about his chances of leading the nation. Mujuru, once considered a king-maker, lost favour when he openly opposed Mugabe at the 2006 ZANU-PF annual conference at Goromonzi and called for a special congress to elect a new leadership. A highly educated man with seven degrees under his belt, Mugabe saw Zimbabwe slip from being the Jewel of Africa to a basket case with the highest inflation in the world. Inflation was officially at 231 million percent in July 2008. The United States academic Steve Hanke put it at 89.7 sextillion percent (21 zeroes) in November 2008. Mugabe's downfall is attributed to three major blunders: the granting of packages to war veterans in 1997 when this was not budgeted for; military intervention in the Democratic Republic of Congo; and the fast-tracking of land reform in 2000, when he grabbed land from almost all white commercial farmers, after which the European Union and the United States imposed sanctions on Zimbabwe. Though these have been dubbed 'smart' sanctions targeted at individuals, their effect was considerable as Zimbabwe could not receive balance of payments support from international organisations like the IMF and the World Bank. Backed by hardliners led by Mnangagwa and the military and service chiefs, Mugabe refused to hand over power to Tsvangirai following his March 2008 defeat. He was forced to sign a power-sharing agreement on 15 September after the country took an unprecedented downhill slide. Mugabe was to remain President but with reduced powers, while Tsvangirai became Prime Minister. Arthur Mutambara, the leader of the smaller MDC faction, became Deputy Prime Minister. Another four months went by before Tsvangirai was sworn in on 11 February 2009. Mugabe is now widely expected to retire at ZANU-PF's National Congress in December. This should pave the way for his successor, who, under the Global Political Agreement, will automatically become the country’s president. Whispers say he may seek re-election because of infighting among his lieutenants, but this is very unlikely. Word is that Mugabe has already vacated State House, his official residence, and has been staying at his Borrowdale mansion for the past year.
    Robert Gabriel Mugabe

    Joice Runaida Mugari Mujuru (Teurai Ropa (Spill blood'))
    Ethnicity: Shona - Zezuru Career: Left school, after two years of secondary education, to join liberation struggle, 1973; reported to have downed a helicopter in 1974 earning the nom de guerre of Teurai Ropa (Spill Blood); member of the General Staff of the Zimbabwe National Liberation Army (ZANLA), 1974; Commander, Chimoio Camp, Mozambique, 1976; married Solomon Mujuru, then known as Rex Nhongo, Deputy Commander of ZANLA, 1977; Member of the Central Committee of the Zimbabwe African National Union (ZANU) and Secretary for Women’s Affairs, 1977; Member of Parliament, Mashonaland Central, 1980; Minister of Youth, Sport and Recreation; 1980-85; Minister of State in the Prime Minister’s office, 1985-88; Minister of Community Development, Cooperatives and Women’s Affairs, 1988-1992; Governor of Mashonaland Central, 1992-96; Minister of Information, Posts and Telecommunications, 1996-97; Minister of Rural Resources and Water Development, 1997-2004; Vice President of ZANU-PF and Zimbabwe, 2004 to date. Commentary: One of the youngest government ministers at Independence, Joice rose to become the most powerful woman in Zimbabwe in 2004 when she was elected party Vice-President. This was a move that was widely believed to have been engineered by her husband Solomon in order to block Emmerson Mnangagwa, for a long time considered to be Mugabe’s successor. Mugabe even hinted that she could rise higher which was interpreted to mean she could succeed him. Initially, she completely overshadowed her co Vice-President, Joseph Msika, but her star began to wane when her husband openly confronted Mugabe, telling him to step down at the Goromonzi party annual conference in 2006. Though she was reappointed Vice-President in 2008, this is widely believed to be window dressing. Joice has lost favour with Mugabe following reports that her daughter, Nyasha del Campo, tried to sell 3.7 tonnes of gold and diamonds worth more than $15 million to a European company, Firstar. Mujuru was reported to be behind the deal and to have threatened the head of Firstar Europe, Bernd Hagemann, when he scrapped the deal. Mujuru remains very popular in her constituency of Bindura. However, she is very unpopular in Matebeleland because of the way she snubbed former Vice-President Joshua Nkomo over the awarding of a mobile phone licence when she was Minister of Posts and Telecommunications. She ignored Nkomo’s instructions to award the tender to Strive Masiyiwa’s Econet, now the largest mobile phone operator in the country, and instead awarded it to Telecel, a company owned by a Congolese and a local consortium that included her close associate, James Makamba, a front for her husband, and President Robert Mugabe’s nephew Leo Mugabe. Joice Mujuru's husband, the powerful General Solomon Mujuru died in a fire at their farmhouse in Beatrice, about 80 kilometres south of Harare, on 15 August 2011. AC Vol 52 No 17, The kingmaker general dies at Alamein & The police fail to protect
    Joice Runaida Mugari Mujuru (Teurai Ropa (Spill blood'))

    Mallam Lamido Aminu Sanusi
    Education: MA, Economics, Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, 1984; BA, Sharia and Islamic Studies, International University of Africa, Khartoum, Sudan, 1991-97. Career: Area Manager, ICON Limited, Kano; Principal Manager, Risk Management Division, United Bank for Africa, 1997; Assistant General Manager, United Bank for Africa, 1998; Head, Risk Management Department, United Bank for Africa; Executive Director, Risk Management and Control, First Bank, 2005; Chief Executive, First Bank, 2009; appointed Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, June 2009. Commentary: Urbane and intellectual, Nigeria's Central Bank Governor Mallam Sanusi has combined a long career in commercial banking with studies for a degree in Islamic law and his duties as a Prince in Kano's royal house. His grandfather, Alhaji Muhammadu Sanusi, was the Eleventh Emir of Kano. Sanusi has quickly shaken up the financial sector with calls for stricter regulation, more transparency and accountability. He is also willing to allow more foreign banks to take controlling stakes in Nigerian institutions. The United States' Citibank's highly profitable stake in Citi Nigeria is one of the few locally incorporated financial institutions in which foreign investors have a majority stake. In contrast to his predecessor, Charles C. Soludo, who was comfortable with looser regulation and close to several senior banking executives, Sanusi warns that he is prepared to force out bank chiefs who flout Central Bank rules. His criticism of lax management caused several banking executives, led by Oceanic's Cecilia Ibru, to campaign against his appointment. Sanusi seems to have little time for the political elite and the PDP. After the 2007 elections, Sanusi said of the PDP, 'Maybe they have gone far, far beyond what anyone would have expected they would do, but I think everybody knew that they were going to rig the elections.'
    Mallam Lamido Aminu Sanusi

    Sandile Zungu ('Gwabs')
    Commentary: The leader of a new wave of politically influential business people, Sandile 'Gwabs' Zungu has emerged as a key figure in Jacob Zuma's presidency. An important fundraiser for his many legal battles and then for the African National Congress election campaign, Zungu works with business figures in the President's camp such as Robert Gumede, Executive Chairman of GijimaAst, who donated 10 million rand (US$ 1.24mn.) of his fortune at an ANC fundraising meeting last year, and Vivian Reddy, Chairman of Edison Corporation. More businessman than politician, Zungu lobbied for the Director General's post in the presidency. Instead, Zuma chose Vusi Mavimbela of the National Intelligence Agency, in the belief (which he shares with his rival, ex-President Thabo Mbeki) that a successful president needs an intelligence-gathering capacity that is independent of the national apparatus. Zungu, who would have been ill-suited to that covert role, will find other ways to work with Zuma. Although a strident businessman, Zungu lines up with the radical nationalist wing of the Zuma team and has criticised Planning Minister Trevor Manuel for lacking policies to deal with the unemployment crisis. Born on 10 February 1967 in Durban's Umlazi township, Sandile Zungu went to school in KwaZulu-Natal, attending the prestigious Hilton College, the most expensive boarding school in South Africa, before graduating from the University of Cape Town in 1988 with a bachelor's in mechanical engineering. A brief career as an engineer followed. with various positions at Richards Bay Minerals, Engen Refinery, National Sorghum Breweries and SA Breweries between 1989 and 1994. His career changed direction in 1995 when he attained an MBA in marketing and finance from the UCT. His move into business saw considerable success. He founded Sarhwu Investment Holdings Limited, now Zungu Investments Company (Zico) in 1997, and by 2000 it had grown from a zero asset base to a net asset value of more than R400 mn. In may 2001-June 2005, he was Chairman of Denel, the youngest-ever head of a parastatal in SA. He remains a prominent business figure, chairing the boards of companies such as Aflease Gold and Spectrum Shipping. The financial downturn has weakened mining companies and unsettled Zungu's business empire. The Micawber Black Economic Empowerment consortium, of which Zico is the leader, made a bad investment in the now defunct Dominium uranium venture under Uranium One. Zico also ran into problems with its stake in Rockwell Diamonds, which has been badly hit by declining diamond demand.
    Sandile Zungu ('Gwabs')

    Elton Steers Mangoma
    Education: Goromonzi High School; Bachelors degree in Accountancy and Masters in Business Leadership. Career: Deputy General Manger, Deloitte & Touche, 1978-1982; Colgate Palmolive, 1982-1987; Group Finance Director, Delta Corporation, 1987-1992; President, Institute of Chartered Accountants of Zimbabwe, 1990; Mangement Consultant, Hunyani Holdings, 1992-1994; Kudenga & Co., 1995-1999; founding member of the Movement for Democratic Change, 1999; Managing Director, Corporate Excellence, 2000 to date; National Assembly Member for Makoni Central, 2008; Minister for Economic Planning and Investment Promotion, 2009-10; Minister of Energy, 2010 to date. Commentary: Mangoma was appointed Minister of Energy in 2010. As Economic Planning Minister, Elton Mangoma was jointly responsible with Finance Minister Tendai Biti for the power-sharing government's economic recovery programme. It is an effective partnership that combines Mangoma's management experience in several manufacturing companies with Biti's track record as a campaigning lawyer and astute political strategist. Their differing styles were on show in London on 22-26 June 2009 as the Harare government's international roadshow, led by Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai, sought to convince Western governments and businesses that the new order was serious about economic and political reform. Mangoma addressed the traditional corporate concerns about regulations and state interference while Biti was happier discussing the political implications of the economic reform programme and the 'irreversible' policy shifts that the government has made. Biti has used his Finance post to chip away at entrenched political patronage while Mangoma, closer in temperament and politics to Tsvangirai, has been quietly convincing companies of the real prospects of Zimbabwe's economic revival. Mangoma is a chartered accountant and married with three children.
    Elton Steers Mangoma

    Chantal Biya
    Commentary: Particularly known for her expensive wardrobe and extravagant hairstyles.
    Chantal Biya

    Joseph C. Wilson
    Commentary: A not-so-diplomatic Ambassador, Joseph Wilson publicly confronted President George Bush’s administration about its use of contentious intelligence to justify the Iraq war. Wilson had been sent on a mission to discover whether Saddam Hussein's regime was attempting to acquire uranium from Niger. He found that it was not and criticised Bush’s stance in the New York Times. Within days, Wilson says, Bush apparatchiks took revenge by briefing journalists about his wife Valerie Plame’s undercover role with the Central Intelligence Agency. Now Wilson is back on the African beat, where he started his diplomatic career, as a director of Symbion Power and Jarch Capital as well as running his own consulting company, JC Wilson International Ventures. Wilson’s campaign against the Bush administration prompted Special Counsel Patrick Fitzgerald’s successful prosecution of I. Lewis ‘Scooter’ Libby, Chief of Staff to then Vice-President Dick Cheney, for obstruction of justice, perjury and lying to federal investigators. Wilson is continuing his legal battle against key figures from the Bush-Cheney era. The saga will be made into a film, ‘Fair Game’, to be directed by Doug Liman and starring Naomi Watts, who bears a striking resemblance to Valerie Plame. Washington journalists claim that Bush-Cheney officials referred to Plame as ‘fair game’ when they vengefully exposed her undercover work with the CIA. The screenplay is based on the couple’s memoirs. Biography: Born in Bridgeport, Connecticut in 1949, Joseph Charles Wilson IV was raised in a Republican family. He attended the University of California, matriculating in 1968, and describes himself as in tune with the Sixties’ ethos. He joined the US Foreign Service in 1976 and held various positions in Niger, Togo, South Africa, Burundi and Congo-Brazzaville. In 1988 he was appointed Deputy Chief of Mission to Iraq, reporting to the then US Ambassador April Catherine Glaspie. He was heralded as a ‘true American hero’ for his role in evacuating and protecting American citizens in Iraq when the first Gulf War broke out. Wilson returned to Africa as Ambassador to Gabon and São Tomé e Príncipe (1992-1995). He then moved to Germany as Political Advisor to the Commander in Chief of the US Armed Forces in Europe until 1997, when he was appointed Special Assistant to Bill Clinton in Washington and Senior Director for African Affairs.
    Joseph C. Wilson

    Thokozani Khupe
    Ethnicity: Ndebele Career: Zimbabwe Amalgamated Railway Union, 1987-99; Secretary, Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions Women’s Advisory Council, 1991; Secretary for Transport and Logistics, Movement for Democratic Change, 1999-05; Member of Parliament, Makokoba, 2000-; Vice-President, Movement for Democratic Change-Tsvangirai, 2006-; Deputy Prime Minister, 2009-. Commentary: Khupe was a founder member of the Movement for Democratic Change having gone through the labour movement where she was first a member of the Zimbabwe Amalgamated Railway Union and then the umbrella body the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions. A Member of Parliament for Makokoba constituency, her birth place, since 2000, Khupe was catapulted to the top when the MDC split in 2005 and Gibson Sibanda, then party Vice-President, left with Welshman Ncube. Her elevation was considered cosmetic as she was one of the few Ndebele left within the Tsvangirai faction. The fact that she was a woman was an added advantage. Khupe is still considered a political lightweight despite her high post but is reported to be working behind the scenes with ambitious MDC secretary-general Tendai Biti . In the process she has split the party in Bulawayo along tribal lines, something that could give advantage to the resuscitated Zimbabwe African People’s Union led by former intelligence supremo Dumiso Dabengwa. Party leader Morgan Tsvangirai is, however, reported to be aware of her machinations but is reportedly allowing her to hang herself.
    Thokozani Khupe

    Henry Okah
    Education: Educated in the Nigerian private school system; BSc Marine Engineering. Career: Nigerian Merchant Navy; licenced door-to-door gun salesman; moved to South Africa, 2003; arrested in Angola, September 2007; deported to Nigeria and detained; released after trial on 13 July 2009. Commentary: The Nigerian government released Okah on 13 July 2009, officially as part of an amnesty announced by President Umaru Musa Yar'Adua and unofficially as a sop to the militants. The Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND) leader should play a crucial role in determining the future of militancy in the Delta. It was both unlikely and inevitable that the 43-year-old Okah would become involved with a militant group. The fourth of nine children born to a Navy officer, he and his siblings had an upbringing characterised by one brother as very 'British'. They grew up in rarefied Lagos society attending private schools and reading comic books. Okah's first visit to the family home in Bayelsa did not occur until he was nineteen, and even then only after his mother's death. He studied marine engineering and joined the Nigerian Merchant Navy after he graduated. He was also a salesman in Lagos in the 1990s, selling handguns. In 2003, he left for South Africa. Despite this privileged background, Okah became a leader of the most truculent of the Niger Delta's militant groups. According to his brother Charles, that first trip to the family home in Bayelsa had been 'shocking'. The contrast of living conditions there with those his family enjoyed in Lagos had upset Okah greatly. This made him very useful to MEND and garnered him an important position. This importance only increased with his arrest which has made him a cause célèbre of sorts among Delta militants. In February 2008, the soft-spoken Okah was deported from Angola, where he had been arrested, and was brought to Nigeria. He was charged with 62 counts including treason, terrorism and gun-running, offences carrying the death penalty. His trial, which began in April 2008, was held behind closed doors on the orders of President Yar'Adua. On 26 May 2008, MEND launched a reprisal attack on a pipeline in which it claimed eleven soldiers were killed. On 13 July 2009, after 23 months in Angolan and Nigerian prisons, he was released. According to Okah, an attack on a Lagos jetty just before his release was to 'welcome me into freedom'. This was the furthest afield of MEND's bloody attacks. Upon his release, Okah maintained he was not a militant, 'but a gentleman'.
    Henry Okah

    Ufot Ekaette
    Education: BSc Economics, 1964, University of Ibadan. Career: Secretary to Major General Yakubu Gowon, Head of State of Nigeria, 1968-1975; served at the Federal Ministries of Industry, 1975, Information, 1977-1979, Education, 1979, and National Planning, 1979-1983; Secretary, Office of the Secretary to the Military Government and Head of Service,1984; Director, External Finance, Federal Ministry of Finance 1985-86; Alternate Governor for Nigeria on the Board of the African Development Bank (AfDB) 1985-86; appointed Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Industries, January 1986; reassigned as Permanent Secretary of Federal Ministry of Works and Housing,1988; Director General, Directorate of Food, Roads and Rural Infrastructure (DFFRI), 1988-89; Director General, Federal Ministry of Social Development, Youth and Sports,1989; Director General (Planning), Federal Ministry of Budget and Planning, 1990; Deputy Governor of Akwa-Ibom State, 1990; retired from the Federal Civil Service, February 1994; appointed Non-Executive Director of First Bank of Nigeria, 1996; Secretary General of the Federation 1999-07; appointed head of the newly created Ministry of the Niger Delta, December 2008-10. Commentary: Nicknamed 'Mr Civil Service', Ekaette joined the Federal Civil Service in 1964 after graduating from the University of Ibadan with a BSc in economics. He has served in numerous positions under every government since. His wife, Eme Ekaette, a retired manager at the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, was elected to the Senate in 2007. As head of the Ministry of the Niger Delta, it falls to Ekaette to begin to do what no Nigerian government has ever done - bring development to the Niger Delta. For all his long service in various governments, one more corrupt than the other, Ekaette enjoys something of a reputation for honesty, but not for humour. On the day his wife was elected to the Senate, Ekaette fulminated that accusations he had been a liability to his state were 'false, libelous and untrue'.
    Ufot Ekaette

    William Kipchirchir Samoei arap Ruto
    Education: Sambut Primary School, A Levels, Wareng Secondary School, Eldoret, Kapabet Boys High School, 1985-86. BSc in Botany and Zoology, University of Nairobi, 1987-1990. Career: Teacher, Sirgoi Secondary School, North Rift; Kamagut Secondary School, North Rift. Founded African Venture Tours and Hotels, 1990. Elected to Parliament for the Kenya African National Union as MP for Eldoret North, 1997; appointed Home Affairs Minister, 2002; joined the Orange Democratic Movement, 2005; ran for nomination as ODM presidential candidate, 2007, but was beaten by Raila Odinga; Minister for Agriculture, 2008-10; Minister for Higher Education, 2010. Married Rachel Chebet, a teacher, in 1991 and they have six children. Commentary: Known for his political savvy and ruthless ambition, William Ruto has managed to propel himself from relative insignificance to a position of importance within the Kenyan Government. Born in Kamagut in 1966, in many ways, Ruto is the ultimate self-made politician. Born into poverty in the Rift Valley, he sold peanuts on the Eldoret highway to supplement the family income. Graduating from the University of Nairobi with a general science degree, Ruto soon became involved with the Cyrus Jirongo-led Youth for Kenyan African National Union '92, an outfit hastily put together to campaign for Daniel arap Moi's re-election in that first multiparty election. KANU's success saw Ruto appointed Assistant Minister for Provincial Administration, and then Minister of Home Affairs. His relationship with Moi, who feared his ambition, was not always an easy one, but Ruto supported Moi's decision to back Uhuru Kenyatta's bid to lead KANU in 2002. Following KANU's defeat in the 2002 election, together with Uhuru Kenyatta, he broke ranks with the Nicholas Biwott faction in KANU and in the run-up to the 2005 constitutional referendum, joined Raila Odinga in the ODM. He put himself forward as a presidential candidate in 2007, but he was beaten to the ODM nomination by Odinga. He marshalled votes in the Kalenjin community during the election, garnering significant support for the ODM. A report produced by the Kenya National Commission on Human Rights accuses Ruto of inciting, planning and financing ethnically motivated violent activity in the aftermath of the 2007 elections. He is even quoted as saying that the Kalenjin would uproot outsiders and burn them. The Philip Waki Report, which Ruto condemned as unsubstantiated, also implicated him in the violence. The International Criminal Court in the Hague and its Prosecutor, Luis Moreno Ocampo, finally charged Ruto and five others in 2011 with crimes against humanity. That did not, however, stop Ruto standing on a joint ticket with Kenyatta in the 2013 presidential elections. Despite the charges, the two won the elections and were sworn into office on 9 April 2013. Vice-President Ruto, like President Kenyatta, is also due to appear at the ICC later this year although the date and place of any such trial are increasingly likely to be moved.
    William Kipchirchir Samoei arap Ruto

    Gill Marcus
    Education: Barnato Park High School for Girls, Johannesburg; and Bachelor of Commerce, University of Witwatersrand, South Africa. Career: Moved to London with her famiiy in 1970; joined the African National Congress, 1970; worked full-time for ANC,1975;. Editor, ANC's Weekly News Briefing, 1976. She returned to South Africa in 1990 and set up the ANC's Department of Information and Publicity. Prior to the 1994 elections, she trained ANC media workers and voter educators, and accompanied President Nelson Mandela, campaigning in the provinces. Elected to parliament, Marcus 'quickly established a widely respected reputation for her efficient, effective and no nonsense approach to her position of Chairperson of the parliamentary joint Finance Committee', 1994; joined cabinet as Deputy Minister of Finance, 1996; appointed Deputy Governor of the South African Reserve Bank, 1 July 1999; appointed Reserve Bank Governor, 20 July 2009. Efficient and hardworking, Gill Marcus is known for her tough managerial style. Born in 1949, she was involved in politics from a young age: her parents were active in the African National Congress and were forced into exile in the late 1960s. Marcus worked for the ANC's Department of Information and Publicity in London, returning to South Africa in 1990. From 1991 to 1998, she served on the ANC's National Executive Committee. Marcus entered the Reserve Bank as Deputy to Tito Mboweni in 1999. Her relationship with Mboweni was strained and she left in 2004, staying away from government roles and taking the position of Chairwoman of Absa in 2007. Her appointment as Reserve Bank Governor on 20 July has been welcomed by the left. Congress of South African Trade Unions General Secretary, Zwelinzima Vavi said: 'She will engage with us, and listen to different opinions. She will not take a know-it-all attitude and will not be dismissive and arrogant.' The approval of Cosatu is both useful and necessary to President Jacob Zuma, who has to be seen as making concessions to the left without rocking the markets. Zuma's decision to get rid of former Governor Tito Mboweni was partly in response to pressure from Cosatu and the South African Communist Party. The left have long called for Mboweni's resignation and his replacement with someone who might be more receptive to the calls for a debate on inflation targeting; they want the current band of 3-6% to be significantly widened or abolished altogether. Whatever the hopes of the left, it is unlikely that Marcus will move too far from Mboweni's conservative approach. She also needs to maintain the support of big business. Some heavyweights in Black Economic Empowerment circles have expressed reservations about her capability though her appointment has been positively received.
    Gill Marcus

    Roy Leslie Bennett
    Career: Treasurer of the Movement for Democratic Change, 2000-2002; Member of Parliament for Chimanimani, 2000-2005; member of the MDC standing committee, 2002-2007; jailed for 15 months after fight in Parliament with Justice Minister Patrick Chinamasa, 2004; released from jail, 2005; fled to South Africa after being accused of trying to assassinate President Robert Mugabe, 2006; re-elected treasurer of MDC, 2007-; deputy Minister of Agriculture-designate, 2009-; Comment: Bennett, a former colonial policeman and coffee farmer, is probably the most powerful white farmer and politician in Zimbabwe at the moment. As treasurer of the MDC, he is probably the third most powerful person in the party after President Morgan Tsvangirai and Secretary-general Tendai Biti. Though currently deputy Minister of Agriculture, the backbone of the country’s economy, he is only a deputy because the ministry was reserved for ZANU-PF. Bennett rose to prominence in 2000 when he beat Munacho Mutezo of ZANU-PF, who was later appointed Minister of Water Resources, in the rural constituency of Chimanimani by more than 3000 votes, despite widespread intimidation and losing his Charleswood Farm. Fluent in Shona, Bennett, who is also popularly known as Pachedu (Between ourselves), had a costly confrontation with Justice Minister Patrick Chinamasa in Parliament in 2004. He was jailed for 15 months but was released in 2005 when it was already too late to contest that year’s parliamentary elections. He was back in trouble a year later when he was accused of plotting to assassinate President Robert Mugabe and fled to South Africa where he sought asylum. He was re-appointed MDC treasurer while in exile and only returned after the formation of the all-inclusive government in February 2009. Although he had been appointed deputy Minister of Agriculture, he was not sworn in but was instead arrested on the 2006 charges. He is currently pending trial. The government has refused to give him his passport back which means he cannot travel on either party, personal or government business. The charges against Bennett are largely believed to be tactical, a way for ZANU-PF hardliners to wreck the all-inclusive government but Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai has insisted that the all inclusive government is not reversible. Bennett is likely to play a key role in any future government dominated by the majority party, the MDC. He will definitely be offered a key ministerial post, thus instilling confidence among the few white farmers left and reassuring the international community.
    Roy Leslie Bennett

    Nelson Chamisa
    Ethnicity: Shona-Karanga Career: Secretary of the Zimbabwe National Students Union, 1997; founder member and national youth chairman, Movement for Democratic Change, 1999; member of Parliament for Kuwadzana through by-election, 2003; elevated to party spokesman for MDC, 2003; re-elected for Kuwadzana seat, 2005-; appointed secretary for Information and Publicity, MDC-T, 2006-; Minister of Information, Communication and Technology, 2009 to date. Commentary: Nelson Chamisa was one of the youngest legislators when he was elected to Parliament in 2003 following the death of another former student leader, Learnmore Jongwe. He had already made his mark as a fiery speaker and student leader while at Harare Polytechnic and became the youth leader of the Movement for Democratic Change at its formation. This brought him close to MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai and he played a key role in mobilising youth for the party. Chamisa has been beaten, arrested and detained for his political activities but this has only served to fortify him as one of the young crop of politicians with a lot to look ahead to. Though very close to Tsvangirai, he is often overshadowed by the secretary-general, Tendai Biti, who at times takes over his role of party spokesman, though, in some cases Biti has burnt his fingers doing so. Chamisa's post was one of the most powerful, but the ministry was split to water down its powers with the creation of the Ministry of Media, Information and Publicity headed by Webster Shamu of ZANU-PF and the responsibility for telecommunications was shifted to the Ministry of Transport under another senior ZANU-PF politician, former chief spook, Nicholas Goche. However, Chamisa is slowly maturing and is a force to be reckoned with.
    Nelson Chamisa

    David Coltart
    Career: South African Police, 1975-78; University of Cape Town, 1978-82; Lawyer, Webb, Low and Barry, 1983; Partner, Webb, Low and Barry, 1984; Founder and Director, Bulawayo Legal Projects Centre regarding Human Rights Training for members of the Police Force and the Central Intelligence Organisation, 1988; Member Electoral observer team to the 1992 Kenyan elections, 1992; Secretary of Legal Affairs, MDC, 2000 to date; Election Agent, Morgan Tsvangirai, 2002; Shadow Justice Minister, 2006; Minister of Education, Sport, Arts and Culture, 2009 to date Commentary: Coltart rose to fame in the 1980s when he defended senior Zimbabwe African People’s Union politicians such as Sidney Malunga, Edward Ndlovu and Stephen Nkomo, brother of ZAPU leader Joshua Nkomo, when they were being harassed by President Robert Mugabe’s government on allegations that they were trying to topple his government. He was also instrumental in compiling data on the atrocities in Matabeleland committed by 5 Brigade and the Central Intelligence Organisation in what is now known as Gukurahundi, culminating almost a decade later in a report, which he edited: Breaking the Silence. He joined the Movement for Democratic Change at its formation and despite a smear campaign by the ruling ZANU-PF that he has been a member of the Rhodesian police, Coltart went on to beat former cabinet minister Callistus Ndlovu to win the Bulawayo South seat in the 2000 parliamentary elections. He repeated the same feat five years later when he beat Small and Medium Enterprises Minister Sithembiso Nyoni. He was caught at the crossroads when the party split in 2005 and sat on the fence for some time tying to get the two parties to reconcile but when they failed to he joined the Mutambara faction. He demonstrated his popularity when he became one of the few Mutambara faction candidates to win a seat in the 2008 elections. This earned him the powerful post of Minister of Education, Sport, Arts and Culture. The ministry takes the biggest chunk of the national budget coming only second to defence. Coltart therefore controls more than half the civil service. Though he plays a low profile, he is probably the most powerful figure in the MDC-Mutambara faction because he is the only popularly elected leader in the current executive. His colleagues in government: party leader Arthur Mutambara, his deputy Gibson Sibanda, secretary-general Welshman Ncube and deputy secretary Priscilla Misihairabwi-Mushonga were all beaten at the 2008 polls. Though his party has fewer than 20 seats in both the lower and upper houses, Coltart could survive in government longer than the Global Political Agreement because of the way he has handled the teacher’s strikes and brought back education onto the rails.
    David Coltart

    Faisal Ali Warabe
    Faisal Ali Warabe, leader of the second opposition party, the Justice and Welfare Party (UCID), has no political baggage from ex-President Mohamed Siad Barre's regime. This has worked in his favour and he has cultivated a successful, if relatively low key, media profile. Popularity remains second to clan links in Somaliland and Faisal's own Eidigalla/Isaaq is smaller than the Habr Jaalo. Much will depend upon the inroads Faisal has made into Habr Awal support. This is the clan of former President Mohamed Ibrahim Egal and has tended to support the UDUB as the party of government. Faisal formed UCID in 2001. It came third in the 2003 elections, with only 16% of votes. Since then, the UCID has won 21 of 82 parliamentary seats and with the Kulmiye party in some disarray and increasing concern over President Dahir Riyale's commitment to democracy, Faisal's comparative youth - in his fifties - and his relatively clean political image could even carry the day.
    Faisal Ali Warabe

    Dahir Riyale Kahin
    President Dahir Riyale Kahin's Unity, Peace and Independence Party (UDUB) is heavily criticised amid repeated delays to the presidential election, which was due on 27 September; this week he postponed it again. Problems began in April 2008 when the Upper House, the Guurti, extended the mandate by a year. The Guurti is regarded as being in the presidential pocket and this infuriated the opposition. It took two months to resolve the crisis and reschedule the election for April 2009. There were further difficulties over electoral registration, which began in October; 1.3 million people were registered, though most estimates suggested 700,000 would be more plausible. Facial recognition technology is supposed to iron out inconsistencies and there were claims the count would be at least 90% accurate. This meant further delays and another extension of Riyale's mandate, to September. His government also expelled Interpeace, a United Nations-partnered organisation overseeing electoral registration due to monitor polling. The government also caused uproar by announcing it would hold elections without the electoral register. Both opposition parties threatened a boycott. Ethiopia despatched its Minister of State for Foreign Affairs to Hargeisa and the number two in the British Embassy in Addis Ababa tried to mediate in the crisis, which damages Somaliland's hopes of international recognition. Born in 1952, President Dahir Riyale Kahin is Somaliland's third President. A member of the feared National Security Service under the late Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre, as Vice-President of Somaliland he took over after President Mohamed Ibrahim Egal died in 2002. He narrowly won the 2003 presidential election, amid claims of manipulation. From the minority Gadabursi people, he benefits from divisions in the majority Isaaq clan.
    Dahir Riyale Kahin

    Ahmed Mohamed Silanyo
    The leader of Kulmiye (Peace, Unity and Development Party), Ahmed Mohamed 'Silanyo', was widely expected to win the 2003 presidential election. He lost to the Unity Peace and Independence party candidate Dahir Riyale Kahin by just 80 votes. Silanyo was expected to win the next election but his party has problems. Always an autocratic Chairman, younger activists are challenging Silanyo, particularly since the party's March 2009 convention. Some senior members left and Kulmiye is weaker than in 2003. Silanyo is from the Habr Jaalo/Isaaq and respected in Somaliland politics, as he was when a minister under Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre. He is around 70 and has kept the younger generation largely out of the party leadership.
    Ahmed Mohamed Silanyo

    Kamalesh Sharma
    Delhi's man runs for the Commonwealth Kamalesh Sharma, the High Commisioner of India to Britain, was appointed Secretary General of the Commonwealth on the 1st April 2008. Sharma joined the Indian Foreign Service in 1965. He was Permanent Representative to the United Nations in Geneva from 1988 to 1990, acting as the UN Council for Trade and Development’s Spokesman for Developing Countries in the Uruguay round of trade negotiations. He later took on ambassadorial missions in Germany, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan. From August 1997, he served five years at the UN headquarters in New York, where he worked on the Millennium Development Goals and occasionally sparred with Pakistan over terrorism and Kashmir. Retiring from the Foreign Service, he was appointed as UN Secretary General Kofi Annan’s Special Representative to East Timor from 2002 to 2004. We hear that Sharma turned down an offer of the Ambassadorship to the United States, preferring to pursue the Commonwealth position and that he is backed by Sonia Gandhi, President of the Indian National Congress. Sharma always seemed well ahead of his opponents. Though Rais Yatim, Malaysia’s Minister of Culture, enjoyed the support of several Muslim nations, he pulled out in July 2007. Michael Frendo, Foreign Minister of Malta, doggedly chased the seat, but was considered a long-shot. In an unorthodox move, Mohan Kaul, Director-General of the Commonwealth Business Council, put himself into the race without the express backing of any country. A British citizen, he presented himself as an Indian candidate. The selection took place during the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in Kampala, Uganda, on 23-25 November 2007. Behind closed doors, ministers decided which candidate was most favoured by member nations. The others then withdrew, leaving a field of one and the appearance of unanimity. There was a general view at the Commonwealth that it was Asia’s turn next, although many smaller Commonwealth countries might still have preferred Malta to India, the populous Goliath.
    Kamalesh Sharma

    Ban Ki-moon
    When South Korea’s Ban Ki-moon became UN Secretary General in January 2007, he pledged to reform UN management – and to make climate change and Sudan’s Darfur his top priorities. A former Minister of Trade and Foreign Affairs and life-long civil servant, Ban brought with him years of diplomatic experience and a blunt heartiness common among Seoul’s diplomatic corps. His election was cheered by China, which had dealt with Ban often, particularly in the six-party talks on North Korean nuclear disarmament. In contrast to his predecessors, on his first day in office, Ban offered a disclosure of his assets for public scrutiny. Those who said Ban’s tenure would signify less of a focus on Africa appear to have been mistaken: Ban appointed Tanzania’s ex-Foreign Minister Asha-Rose Migiro as Deputy Secretary General and Africa still consumes more than 60% of the UN Security Council’s time. His first major achievement was winning UNSC backing and Sudan’s consent for a 26,000 UN peacekeeping force in Darfur, which at US$2.5 billion is the UN’s most expensive ever. Doubtless, Ban’s expertise in Asian diplomacy will serve him well on the world stage and in understanding his continent’s fast-developing relations with Africa.
    Ban Ki-moon

    H.E. Zhong Jianhua
    The career of China’s new Ambassador to South Africa, Zhong Jianhua, hints at the importance Beijing places on its biggest trade partner in Africa. A graduate of the Beijing Institute of Foreign Languages, Zhong joined the Foreign Affairs Ministry in 1977. His past assignments include eight years at China’s Embassy in Britain and twelve at the Department of Consular Affairs in Beijing, where he became Director-General in 1999. No stranger to sticky negotiations, in 1991-93 Zhong was First Secretary of the Chinese delegation to the Sino-British Joint Liaison Group that prepared the 1997 Hong Kong handover. Later, he was a negotiator for the United States’ reparations for the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation’s bombing of China’s Embassy in Belgrade, Yugoslavia, in 1999. In 2001-2007, as Consul General in Los Angeles, USA, Zhong was an active speaker who could be counted on to accentuate the positive. His responses to questions on income inequality and economic reform were more nuanced and constructive than Beijing’s usual line. Before leaving his US post in 2007, Zhong massaged religious leaders’ concerns about how China will accommodate the religious practices of Olympic athletes in 2008. Now Beijing has placed a friendly, media-canny face in Pretoria, perhaps in anticipation of tricky public relations duties to emerge.
    H.E. Zhong Jianhua

    Dr Muhammad Yunus
    The work of Grameen Bank, which shared the 2006 Nobel Peace Prize with Yunus, its founder, began in 1974 when Yunus handed US$27 from his own pocket to a group of 42 craftswomen. The group used the money to pay off debt and develop their business, and eventually repaid him. This was the beginning of microfinance. Grameen has diversified: it works in fish farming, textiles and irrigation, as well as software, telecoms and renewable energy, all with an aim to improve the lives of the most impoverished. Meanwhile, the microfinance industry has blossomed in South America, Africa and Asia. Grameen gives small, unsecured loans to poor people, usually women, who normally have no access to credit. The interest rates are high (up to 20%) but Grameen claims to recover 98% of its loans. The loans make a big difference to borrowers, who are encouraged to reinvest their profits in their own small enterprises. Born in Chittagong, Bangladesh, Yunus earned his MA at Dhaka University. He worked as an economics lecturer at Chittagong College before winning a Fulbright Fellowship to Vanderbilt University in the United States. He returned home with a Doctorate in Economics in 1971. It was while lecturing at Chittagong University, in the midst of the Bangladesh famine of 1974, that he began his famous $27 experiment. Yunus remains busy at the head of Grameen, which by mid-2007 had distributed $6.8 billion to 7.4 million borrowers. The bank suspended repayments of loans in the wake of Cyclone Sidr, which devastated Bangladesh in November. Earlier this year, Yunus toyed with and abandoned the idea of starting his own political party. He is a founding member of the Global Elders, whose luminaries include Nelson Mandela and Desmond Tutu, that will offer advice on pressing global problems.
    Dr Muhammad Yunus

    Masahiko Koumura
    Japan’s former Foreign Minister participated in a busy, Africa-focused 2008: the fourth Tokyo International Conference on African Development on 28-30 May, and the Group of Eight Summit in Hokkaido on 7-9 July. Koumura graduated from the highly regarded law programme at Chuo University, passing the bar in 1965. He won a seat in the House of Representatives in 1980, where he has served nine terms. A member of the Liberal Democratic Party, he has held a number of ministerial posts: Foreign Affairs, Justice and Economic Planning. In August 2007, he was appointed Defence Minister, but that lasted only a month; after Shinzo Abe’s surprise resignation from the Premiership in September, incoming Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda returned Koumura to the Foreign Ministry. With limited military capacity, Japan sees its development assistance as a major foreign policy tool. It extends aid to over 30 African countries, focusing on sanitation, food aid and infectious diseases. Lately, Japan’s work has been overshadowed by the headline-snatching sums China has been dealing out. This year, Koumura will try to refocus attention on Japan’s long-standing efforts on the continent. At the Tokyo International Conference on African Development in Yokohama on 28-30 May 2008, he unveiled the Hideyo Noguchi Africa Prize, a ¥100 million (US$892,000) prize for medical research and services in Africa. In September 2008 Masahiko Koumura was replaced as Minister for Foreign Affairs by Hirofumi Nakasone.
    Masahiko Koumura

    Jiang Jianqing
    In a defining moment, the Communist Party of China (CPC) began in 2002 to admit entrepreneurs – unabashed capitalists – to its ranks. Jiang Jianqing, Governor of ICBC, the world’s largest bank by market value and architect of plans to buy a 20% stake in Africa’s largest bank, Standard Bank, is not one of them. He is very much a cadre. Born in 1953, Jiang joined the CPC in 1983 while an undergraduate at Shanghai University of Finance and Economics; he had earlier spent nine years of labour in the fields of Jiangxi and coal mines of Henan during the Cultural Revolution. In 1986, he joined a Shanghai branch of ICBC (then the National Industrial and Commercial Bank) as a teller. He has since risen steadily to his current position of bank Governor. In 2006, he presided over ICBC’s public flotation on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, transforming it from a state owned bank into a public corporation, albeit one on which the government keeps a heavy grip. The Finance Ministry and Central Huijin, a state-owned finance company, each hold 35% of ICBC in renminbi-denominated A-shares; foreign investors hold a minority stake of dollar H-shares. Jiang’s ties to the CPC are strong, and his rise in ICBC has been mirrored by his progress within the party. He was elected as an alternate member of the 16th CPC Central Committee in 2002 – an honour repeated at this year’s Party Congress – and that year also became a member of the central bank’s monetary policy department. The Standard Bank deal represents China’s largest foreign investment in sub-Saharan Africa, a bold move from an executive with such an orthodox pedigree, but one that appeals to strongly to Standard’s shareholders. On 3 December 2007, they voted 95% in favour of the ICBC offer.
    Jiang Jianqing

    Liu Guijin
    Liu Guijin is in an unenviable position. As China’s Envoy to Africa, he must balance its often contradictory priorities: on one hand, China claims the internal affairs of its African business partners are none of its business; on the other hand, it has a seat on the United Nations Security Council, which has increasingly made Sudan’s Darfur conflict its business. He has dropped some clangers along the way: ‘I didn’t see a desperate scenario of people dying of hunger,’ he announced after visiting Darfur in May 2008. In September, in response to questions about Chinese arms deals with Sudan’s government, Liu told CNN: ‘If I am selling a knife, I cannot ensure that my client will not use the knife for murder, even though this is not my intention.’ Yet he has also taken much credit for getting Khartoum to accept the deployment of the UN-African Union Mission to Darfur (UNAMID) and regularly meets representatives of the UN, AU and United States. Liu joined the Foreign Ministry in 1972, and during the next 25 years alternated diplomatic postings in Africa with stints back in Beijing, where he rose to the head of the African Affairs department. He was an Attaché to Kenya and Ethiopia, and Ambassador to Zimbabwe (1995-1998) and South Africa (2001-2007). He was made Special Envoy in May 2007. China has pledged a 315-member engineering unit to the 26,000-strong UNAMID force. This tiny fraction of the overall force has already attracted disproportionate attention: two rebel groups, the Justice and Equality Movement and the Sudan Liberation Movement, have stated their hostility to the Chinese presence. If the Chinese unit is targeted, Liu’s dexterity – and his country’s principle of noninterference – will be put to the test.
    Liu Guijin

    H.E. Xu Jianguo
    Commentary: Ambassador to Africa's biggest oil producer, Xu Jianguo has presided over a rapid expansion of commercial and diplomatic ties since his posting to Abuja in September 2006. Chinese investment in Nigeria is worth more than US$3 billion, and bilateral trade in 2007 was running at over $4 bn., making Nigeria China's third-largest African trading partner, just behind Angola and Sudan. Xu graduated from Zhejiang University in 1982. He stayed on at the university as Secretary of its Communist Youth League for several years before joining the Foreign Service. In 2001, he served briefly as attaché to China's Embassy in South Africa. The next year, he was appointed Ambassador to Georgia. In June 2004, Xu moved on to the Foreign Ministry's new Department of External Security Affairs. The department was established to respond to threats against Chinese enterprises and citizens abroad, as well as to assess risks to state infrastructure in China's own troublesome autonomous zones. Xu was Deputy Director of the department until his assignment to Abuja in September 2006. His security experience proved invaluable soon after his arrival in Nigeria. In January 2007, five workers from Sichuan Telecommunication Corporation were kidnapped in Port Harcourt. Xu coordinated a rescue operation that freed the hostages in 13 days. In May 2008, three engineers from the China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation were kidnapped; their release was secured three days later. Xu earned goodwill in Abuja - for friendship if not clairvoyance - by predicting a gold medal for the Nigerian men's football team at the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games. In the event, the Nigerians took a silver. He became the ambassador to Grenada in October 2010.
    H.E. Xu Jianguo

    Chin Dong-Soo
    Chin Dong-soo studied law at Seoul National University and economics at Boston University, United States. He joined South Korea's Finance Ministry in 1977. During his long tenure there, he was involved in efforts to improve transparency in South Korea's financial system. Chin led banking reform efforts after Korea's banks were hit by the Asian financial crisis of 1997. Chin served three years as a World Bank Deputy Director (2001-2004) and coordinated Korea's international financial affairs as Vice-Minister of Finance and Economy from May 2006 until he became President of Kexim in July 2008. Some 13% of Korea's bilateral aid went to Africa in 2007 through the Economic Development Cooperation Fund, Kexim's aid agency. Eleven countries shared US$430 million, with Angola taking about a third of the money for agriculture and information technology infrastructure projects. At a KOAFEC workshop in Ghana in July 2008, Korea promised to commit $1.5 billion to Africa between 2008 and 2012. Kexim still has to raise its African profile. Out of more than a dozen offices worldwide, there is not one in Africa.
    Chin Dong-Soo

    Motoyoshi Noro
    Japan has been increasing its diplomatic presence in Southern Africa following the successful Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD) IV in May 2008. Until recently, Japan's Embassy in Zambia handled relations with Malawi and Botswana. Ambassador Hideto Mitamura opened the Lilongwe consulate in January 2008, overseeing its operation until Motoyoshi Noro arrived in June that year. Botswana too received a new ambassador, Ryoichi Matsuyama. Noro joined the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) in 1971. Like many of his colleagues, Noro studied at Keio University. He spent the early years of his Foreign Service career in India, where he became Vice-Consul at the Kolkata Embassy. A stint in the late 1990s as the United Nations Development Programme's advisor on Japanese affairs led to his involvement in the TICAD II meeting in 1998. After that, he worked increasingly in Africa. Noro was appointed Chargé d'Affaires at Japan's Embassies in Ghana (2001-2002) and Ethiopia (2003-2004). Following that, he served as Director of MOFA's Humanitarian Assistance Division, which supervises Japan's activities through international organisations such as the UN. Noro returned to Kolkata in 2007, this time with the full rank of Consul General, before being despatched to Lilongwe. He made a polite entrance, arriving with kind words for President Bingu wa Mutharika's stewardship. Japan is a reliable buyer of Malawian tobacco and coffee, while a contingent of Japanese Overseas Cooperation Volunteers work on technical projects in the country.
    Motoyoshi Noro

    Jairam Ramesh
    Jairam Ramesh’s career has taken him to the top of government and politics in India. Now he has expanded his remit to economic relations with Africa. On 6-7 October 2008, he led a business delegation to the fifth Ethio-India Joint Trade Committee meeting in Addis Ababa. The talks produced a US$640 million line of credit to build three sugar factories in Tendaho. The two sides discussed a renewed trade and double taxation avoidance agreements. Ethiopia is already included, with 33 other African countries, in India’s duty-free tariff preference scheme for exports to India. India’s trade surplus with Ethiopia was also addressed. Alongside Ramesh, India’s Ambassador to Addis Ababa, Gurjit Singh, worked hard to boost Delhi’s relations with Ethiopia. This year marks the 60th anniversary of formal bilateral relations between the two states and Ambassador Singh has organised celebratory events across Ethiopia. One high point was the invitation to Premier Meles Zenawi to deliver the Mahatma Gandhi lecture. Ramesh was advisor to Prime Minister P.V. Narasimha Rao in the early 1990s, as Rao introduced sweeping economic reforms. He then worked in the Planning Commission. Subsequently, Ramesh joined the India National Congress Party and was elected as a member of the Rajya Sabha (parliament) in June 2004. In addition to representing Andhra Pradesh, India’s fourth-largest state, Ramesh has for several years been a secretary of the All India Congress Committee, the core leadership of the INC. He heads its economic policy unit. Ramesh studied mechanical engineering at the Indian Institute of Technology in Bombay, where he graduated in 1975. He later studied public management at Carnegie Mellon University in the United States, and then technology policy at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. A frequent newspaper columnist and former speechwriter for the INC’s Sonia Gandhi, he is the author of Making Sense of Chindia (2005), a collection of essays on the competition – and potential for cooperation – between Asia’s giants.
    Jairam Ramesh

    H.E. Akihiko Furuya
    As Japan’s ‘Year of Africa – 2008’ picks up speed, Tokyo’s Ambassador to Tshwane, Akihiko Furuya, will be one of Japan’s main voices in Africa. Furuya has the difficult job of promoting Japanese cooperation efforts in Africa without appearing to be in competition with China and India, the other mega-economies courting Africa. Furuya plays down rivalry between Japan and China in line with his Premier Yasuo Fukuda’s recent attempts to improve Sino-Japanese relations during meetings with his Chinese counterpart Wen Jiabao and Chinese President Hu Jintao in December. Far from competing for influence, Furuya argues, Japan and China should share their development experiences with Africa. Yet Japan’s Africa strategy, scaled back from its flowering in the mid-1990s, is much closer to that of the European Union. Tokyo uses British institutions such as Crown Agents to disburse aid. Tokyo also wants African backing for a Japanese seat on the United Nations Security Council. Treading such a delicate line will come naturally to a skilled diplomat like Furuya. Born in 1946, Furuya studied law at Tokyo University and entered the diplomatic service in 1970. By 1985, he was Director of the Middle Eastern and African Affairs Bureau. His first international posting was to the Philippines, followed by stints at embassies in France and Vietnam. His return home in 1995 found him serving as Deputy Director-General of Global Issues in the Foreign Policy Bureau. By 1997, he was Japan’s Minister to the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development. In 2000-2002, he served as Ambassador to Senegal, Cape Verde, Gambia, Guinea Bissau, Mali and Mauritania. After that, he was an Executive Director of the Japan Bank for International Cooperation, the state development bank. In 2006, he took up his latest ambassadorial post, which also covers Botswana, Lesotho, Namibia and Swaziland.
    H.E. Akihiko Furuya

    Hon Yang Jiechi
    By tradition, China’s Foreign Ministers call at several African capitals in January but Yang Jiechi’s trip in January 2008, barely nine months into his job, had a special significance. In 2008, Asia’s big three – China, India and Japan – seek to strengthen ties with Africa. Those ties will also come under a critical spotlight from, among others, Western corporate rivals and Africa’s civic activists who may be wary of Asia’s economic support for oppressive regimes. Foreign Minister Yang’s tour took in South Africa as well as Burundi, Congo-Kinshasa and Ethiopia – three other states whose human rights records have been heavily criticised but who all share close relations with Western powers. Beneath the cordiality, Yang had to address serious concerns about South Africa’s trade deficit with China and the speed of new Chinese mining investment in Congo. An Anglophone specialist, Yang was promoted to Foreign Affairs Minister because of his knowledge of the United States and of international diplomacy. Born in Shanghai in 1950, he joined the Communist Party in 1971 as an undergraduate. After postgraduate studies at the London School of Economics, he joined the Foreign Affairs Ministry’s Translation and Interpretation Department. Yang’s first posting abroad was to China’s Embassy in Washington DC. When rotated back to Beijing, he rose within the Foreign Ministry, becoming Director of North American and Oceania Affairs in 1990, then Vice-Minister. In 2001, he as Ambassador to the USA, he spearheaded China’s demand for an apology after a US spy plane and a Chinese fighter jet collided off the coast of China, killing the Chinese pilot. Yang left Washington in 2005. He was Vice-Minister responsible for Latin America, as well as Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan, when Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing retired in April 2007. As one of China’s most effective and experienced diplomats, Yang was chosen to succeed him.
    Hon Yang Jiechi

    Mohamed Hassan Marican
    When he took over as Chief Executive of Malaysia’s Petronas in 1995, Mohamed Hassan Marican promised he would transform the state-owned oil company into a major international player. Within ten years, he said, 30% of the company’s revenues would come from overseas. Africa has been central to that strategy: the company’s biggest foreign investment is in Sudan. Petronas’s cooperation with the Khartoum regime has attracted as much criticism as China’s. Unlike China, however, Malaysia has not tried to appease its critics by intervening in Sudan’s many conflicts. A trained accountant, Marican joined Petronas in 1989, where he rose to become senior Vice-President. As Chief Executive, his first big foreign moves came in 1996, when Petronas bought a 30% stake in a Total SA project in Iran and a 30% stake (later increased to 80%) in South Africa’s Engen. Petronas now has worldwide operations that include some 16 African countries. This year will mark the company’s tenth year of operation in Sudan. Petronas, owned by Malaysia’s Ministry of Finance, does not make its financial statements public. Although it is regarded as an efficient company, many are troubled by its lack of transparency. It has also been vulnerable to some political pressure on its investments. In 1998, it bought KPB, an ailing shipping company owned by Mirzan Mahathir, son of then-Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad, and in 2000 it took a controlling stake in Proton, a money-losing Malaysian auto manufacturer. International expansion is sure to continue as Malaysia’s local petroleum reserves are shrinking: the government expects it will become a net importer of oil by 2011.
    Mohamed Hassan Marican

    Raman Dhawan
    India’s Tata Group attracted global attention with the unveiling of its US$2,500 Tata Nano economy car and its bid to buy two quintessentially British car companies – Jaguar and Land Rover – from the United States’ Ford Motor Company. Tata is to launch the Nano car in South Africa and expects big sales for Jaguar and Land Rover all over Africa. The key man in Tata’s Africa campaign is Raman Dhawan, Managing Director of Tata Africa Holdings, a subsidiary of the Tata Group. Tata’s presence in Africa dates to 1977, when Dhawan, an accountant, was dispatched to Zambia to establish an office for Telco (later Tata Motors), whose pick-up trucks were marketed there. In the face of strong competition from Japanese companies, Dhawan did not initially meet with rapid success. In the 1980s, however, he picked up some of the Zambian market share and gradually diversified into mining, agriculture and hotels. Dhawan took Tata first to Zimbabwe, then to Johannesburg, where the company has been based since 1994. South Africa has become the springboard for Tata’s operations in ten countries throughout the continent. Tata Consultancy Services has been profitably operating in South Africa since 1995. Tata Motors has added a number of passenger cars to its line. Tata Steel operates a ferrochrome plant in Richards Bay, Kwazulu-Natal, and its automotive plant in Rosslyn is due to open this year. Future operations include vehicle sales in Nigeria and Kenya, and a (long delayed) coffee plant in Uganda.
    Raman Dhawan

    Supachai Panitchpakdi
    An experienced negotiator at the head of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, Supachai Panitchpakdi unveiled the agency's annual global survey on 2 September 2008 at Britain's London School of Economics. Addressing the effects of rising commodity prices, Supachai called for increased spending on capacity building in African countries. 'In the last decade, there was an increase in the proportion [of aid] that goes to social infrastructure, which is needed, but it should be supplementary to the major investment into the economic infrastructure,' he said. He also suggested that developing countries' central banks fortify local bond markets to help private enterprises mobilise funds. Born in Bangkok, Thailand, in 1946, Supachai earned both a Master's and PhD from the Netherlands School of Economics (now Erasmus University) in Rotterdam. In 1973, he completed his dissertation under economist and Nobel laureate Jan Tinbergen. Supachai has held key positions in the government and financial institutions of Thailand: Deputy Minister of Finance (1986-88); Director of the Thai Military Bank (1988-1992); and Deputy Prime Minister (1992-1995). A battle for the top seat at the World Trade Organisation between Supachai and New Zealand's Mike Moore left the WTO without a Director General for almost three months in 1999. At last, a compromise split the seat between the two. When he took over in 2002, Supachai became known as an advocate of free trade and an opponent of rich nations' farm subsidies. He took his UNCTAD job in September 2005, and his term ends in 2009.
    Supachai Panitchpakdi

    Mr Ren Zhengfei
    Huawei is China's largest producer of telecommunications equipment, built by an enigmatic figure, Ren Zhengfei. Born in 1944, Ren attended Chongqing University of Civil Engineering and Architecture. He joined the army, working as an engineer in a unit based in Sichuan. He left in 1978 during a troop downsizing and moved to Shenzhen, where he started an electronics company in 1982, the elder sibling of Huawei. In 1988, Huawei began as a provider of communication technology to the military, where Ren had maintained contacts. In 1993, Huawei entered the mobile telephone market as a digital switch manufacturer and found rapid success. Huawei's first contract abroad came in 1996, when it struck a deal with Hong Kong-based Hutchison Whampoa. Since then, its aggressive pursuit of overseas markets has made it the fifth-largest telecom in the world. In 2007, it posted US$12.6 billion in revenue and strong growth in emerging markets. This month, it signed a deal to equip the expansion of the mobile phone network of Etisalat Egypt. Ren seems disinclined to shed the cloak of mystery that covers him. Frustrating both admirers and potential partners, the details of his biography have hardly become less sketchy in the past two decades. His military background, along with the still-undisclosed details of Huawei's ownership, engender suspicion whenever a potential overseas acquisition comes along. A $200 million deal with India's Reliance Communications in 2007 survived security fears, but a bid for a minority share of United States-based 3Com this year did not. Ren's chumminess with China's Communist Party leadership and past accusations of intellectual property theft from Cisco (settled out of court in 2004) and Fujitsu (widely reported but not pursued) have not helped.
    Mr Ren Zhengfei

    Mr Choi Young-jin
    Alongside the United Nations Operations in Côte d'Ivoire (UNOCI), South Korea's Choi Young-jin is working to implement the peace process outlined in the Ouagadougou accord of March 2007, signed by President Laurent Gbagbo and the Forces Nouvelles rebel leader, Guillaume Soro. Choi studied international relations at Yonsei University in Seoul, then earned both his Master's and doctorate from the University of Paris 1 Pantheon-Sorbonne. Fluent in French and English, he has served in the diplomatic corps in Senegal, France, Tunisia and the United States. On home assignments, he worked in international economic affairs and policy planning. As Assistant Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations at the UN from 1998 to 1999, Choi directed, among others, the Sierra Leone and Congo-Kinshasa missions. He became Vice-Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade in 2004 under South Korea's then-Foreign Minister (and future UN boss), Ban Ki-moon. Choi was South Korea's representative to the UN from 2005 to 2007 and succeeded Sweden's Pierre Schori as UN envoy to Cote d'Ivoire in November 2007. His appointment was met with grumbling about nepotism. (At around the same time, India's Siddharth Chatterjee, a UNICEF program officer and Ban's son-in-law, was made Chief of Staff to the UN's Iraq mission.) In Côte d'Ivoire, Choi seems near to delivering what two previous UN envoys have not. In August, he launched a '1000 microprojects' initiative to rehabilitate the 26,000 former Forces nouvelles rebels who will not be integrated into the national army. On 15 September, registration began for the nine million voters across the country. The drive, though behind schedule, cash-strapped and understaffed, is undeniably under way. Elections are set for 30 November.
    Mr Choi Young-jin

    Partha Sarathi Bhattacharyya (Old King Coal)
    With its coal reserves due to last only another 40 to 45 years, India is taking steps to increase its coal imports to meet rising domestic consumption. Spearheading the move is Partha Bhattacharyya. India relies on coal for over half of its power needs - and Bhattacharyya's CIL provides 85% of that coal. It is India's, and indeed the world's, largest coal producer. Africa will be new territory for CIL, which is becoming a coal importer for the first time since its founding in 1975. A company it formed with four other state enterprises, Coal Ventures International (CVI), will carry out overseas acquisition. An attempt to purchase a mine in Mozambique foundered earlier this year after a lengthy due diligence process. With India needing 15 million tonnes of coal by the end of this financial year ending March 2009, matters have taken on new urgency. CVI is giving mines in Mozambique another look, as well as assets in Zimbabwe, South Africa and Malawi. Bhattacharyya studied physics at postgraduate level at Jadavpur University in Calcutta. He later studied at ICFAI University, a training centre for financial analysts. He joined CIL in 1977 as a management trainee, climbing the ladder to head the corporate treasury. He restructured CIL's capital and attracted loans from the World Bank and Japan Bank for International Cooperation. In 2001, Bhattacharyya transferred to Western Coalfields, a CIL subsidiary, where he acted as Director of Finance. From 2004 to 2006, he was the Chairman of Bharat Coking Coal Ltd., a CIL subsidiary. Here he proved his mettle by shepherding the venture to its first profitable year since its inception in 1972. He returned to CIL as Chairman in 2006.
    Partha Sarathi Bhattacharyya (Old King Coal)

    Dr Ramakrishna Sithanen
    Sithanen was the key strategist behind his country's fast-expanding ties with Asia's hyper-economies, China and India. He wanted Chinese and Indian investment to support his plans for the development of Mauritius as the regional financial centre of choice for Asian investors. Sithanen spent most of the 1980s at Air Mauritius as an economist and Director of Planning. Sithanen's political career began in 1991, when he was elected to the National Assembly, serving at the same time as Prime Minister Anerood Jugnauth's Finance Minister. Sithanen went into the political wilderness after 1995 elections cast the Labour Party from power. Rejuvenated, Labour returned to power a decade later, and PM Navinchandra Ramgoolam brought Sithanen back as his Deputy PM and Finance Minister. Sithanen launched an ambitious package of reforms, mapped out in the 2006-7 budget. Sithanen developed an economic plan based on the rapid development of financial institutions to serve the region together with health and educational services. They are to grow alongside tourism and call centres such as the one operated by India's Infosys Technologies. As Mauritius became a gateway to Africa for Asian businesses, Sithanen's star rose further. In offshore financial services, the country already did booming business as an intermediary for Indian companies' African operations. Now China has arrived with its own grand projects such as Shanxi Tianli Enterprise's US$730 million industrial park near Port Louis. Initial government reports promised 7,500 new jobs; Sithanen claimed there would be 40,000 jobs. Sithanen left office on 6 May 2010 following the general election having been informed that he would not be given candidacy for Finance Minister.
    Dr Ramakrishna Sithanen

    Li Jinjun
    A new player treads the boards of the African stage: Li Jinjun, Vice-Minister of the International Department of the Communist Party of China's Party's Central Committee. The party's International Department forges links with political parties abroad, forming a parallel diplomatic channel alongside China's Foreign Ministry. The youngest of the four Vice-Ministers in the department, Li was born in Jiangyin, Jiangsu Province, in 1956. He attended the prestigious Shanghai International Studies University, and later studied in Germany. Li joined the CPC Central Committee's International Department in 1975. He eventually became Director-General of its China Economic Cooperation Centre, a party organ for luring foreign investors and assisting China's outward investment. He has also served as Director-General of West European Affairs. A long stint as ambassador to Myanmar (2000-2005) was followed by 18 months as ambassador to the Philippines. Promoted to his current position in March 2007, Li kept a low profile during his first year as Vice-Minister. This year he's emerged as a key official. He attended conferences of the Communist Party of India and the Communist Party of India (Marxist) in March, then opened a Chinese Association for International Understanding conference on African development in Beijing in April. In June, he accompanied International Department Minister Wang Jiarui in hosting Jacob Zuma, President of South Africa's African National Congress.Li led his first CPC 'goodwill delegation' to Africa from 18 July-1 August, a sign of his ascending influence. Li met Khumbo Kchali, vice-president of Malawi's ruling Democratic Progressive Party, Zambia's Acting President Rupiah Banda, and Tunisian President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali
    Li Jinjun

    Dr Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu
    Heading the unwieldy OIC, Ihsanoglu needs all his considerable reserves of tact and political determination. It may help that he can draw on his wide-ranging personal history, which straddles Africa and Asia. Long a resident of Turkey, Ihsanoglu was born in Cairo, Egypt, in 1943. He took a PhD from Ankara University in chemistry in the 1970s. In 1980, the professor established the Research Centre for Islamic History, Art and Culture in Istanbul, an OIC-funded organisation. He wrote extensively on Islamic culture and science, remaining Director of IRCICA until January 2005, when a concerted push by Turkey saw him selected to succeed Morocco's Abdelouahed Belkeziz as OIC Secretary General. The OIC leadership has to manage the most important fault-line: between mainstream Islam and the growing pressures from avowedly Islamist regimes such as Iran and Sudan. So, at times the OIC agrees with the other multilateral organisations and sometimes stridently dissents. There is also a fierce debate about whether predominantly Christian Tanzania should join the OIC. Under Ihsanoglu's leadership, the OIC joined the European Union and African Union in condemning the 6 August military overthrow of President Sidi Ould Sheikh Abdallahi in Mauritania . But at Turkey's first African Cooperation Summit (August 18-21), Ihsanoglu opposed the call by Luis Moreno-Ocampo, the Chief Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court, to indict on charges of war crimes Sudan's President Omer Hassan el Beshir. Some activists in Sudan and the Middle East accuse the OIC of inconsistency: in July, it welcomed the capture of Radovan Karadzic, a former Bosnian Serb leader who also faces ICC charges. The activists argue that Sudan's Omer is responsible for the deaths of more Muslims in Darfur than Karadzic was in Bosnia.
    Dr Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu

    K.V. Kamath
    Kamath is revered in business circles for transforming a small lender, ICICI Bank, into a dynamic private enterprise. He joined ICICI in 1971, working in project finance and making his mark as an able manager with a shrewd eye for opportunity. In 1988, he began an eight-year stint at the Asian Development Bank in Manila. His return to ICICI in 1996, as its Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, coincided with newly-enacted economic reforms that created the conditions for ICICI to flourish. Under Kamath, the bank introduced a range of services for corporate clients and introduced cash points throughout the country. Successful public offerings in 1998, 2004 and 2005 made it India's largest private bank by market capitalisation. The bank established a South African office in 2006 to tap into the trade between the two countries, currently some US$4.7 billion and a sum which officials plan to increase to $10 bn. by 2010. Kamath the CEO keeps his cards near his chest but on 1 May 2008 he became President of the CII, a business association that brings together the luminaries of the entrepreneurial class and promotes the country's industry at home and abroad. In this capacity, Kamath shows unconstrained enthusiasm for Africa. The CII has trumpeted plans to boost India's already burgeoning economy to 10% annual growth and Indian investment in Africa features prominently in the plans.
    K.V. Kamath

    Chi Jianxin
    Announced to much fanfare at the 2006 China-Africa summit, the China-Africa Development Fund (CADF) was formally established in June 2007 by the China Development Bank. The 50-year fund now manages US$1 billion, an amount that will later rise to $5 bn. The Chairman of the Board is the politically well-connected Vice-Governor of the CDB, Gao Jian. The public face of the fund is Chi Jianxin, once the director of CDB's Investment Banking Department. Equity funds in China are still a fledgling industry. CDB had assembled just four before the CADF, by far the largest of them. It focuses on agriculture, manufacturing and infrastructure. Sensitive to criticism of China's motives, Chi downplays any interest in mineral resources and points out that the fund does not pursue controlling stakes. He describes the fund as 'for-profit, but not only for profit'. Among the Fund's investments to date: a ferrochrome plant in Zimbabwe (with Sinosteel), a glass factory in Ethiopia (with CGC Overseas Construction) and a power station in Ghana (with Shenzhen Energy Investment).
    Chi Jianxin

    Zhai Jun
    A specialist in the Middle East and North Africa, Zhai is responsible for China's West Asian and African relations. The Hebei native joined the Foreign Ministry after finishing university and was sent to study Arabic at Cairo University. He returned to Beijing in 1975, spending five years as a translator before taking an embassy post in Yemen. He later worked in Saudi Arabia and served as ambassador to Libya. He was Director-General of West Asian and North African Affairs until 2006, when he became Assistant Foreign Minister. Zhai led the preparations for the third Forum on China-Africa Cooperation in November 2006, an event that rejuvenated China's relationship with Africa. He continues to host follow-up activities like the visit of ministers from Francophone African countries to Beijing in late June 2008. Also in June, the China Institute of International Studies, the Foreign Ministry's think-tank, held a 'Darfur: Peace and Development' seminar which attempted to offset criticism of Beijing's support for the Sudanese government. Zhai dismissed talk of economic sanctions against Sudan and pointed instead to the slow deployment of the United Nations-African Union Mission in Darfur (UNAMID), which Zhai helped to persuade Sudan to accept during a visit to Khartoum in April 2007. Meanwhile, Special Envoy to Darfur Liu Guijin took a crack at ungrateful non-governmental organisations and biased media. Zhai then attended the 11th African Union summit in Sharm el-Sheikh. On 30 June, he met with AU Chairman Jean Ping and handed over donations of US$300,000 to the AU and $600,000 to UNAMID.
    Zhai Jun

    Ken Costa
    The courtship by Sunil Mittal's Bharti Airtel of Cyril Ramaphosa's MTN hit the rocks in May 2008. Enter the next ardent suitor: Anil Ambani's Reliance Communications. A marriage between Reliance, India's second largest mobile operator, and MTN, Africa's largest, would create a company that reaches across South Asia, the Middle East and Africa. Reliance has asked Ken Costa of Lazard International to serve as matchmaker. Born in South Africa, Costa attended the University of the Witwatersrand, where he studied law and philosophy. After postgraduate work at Cambridge University, Costa remained in Britain, joining SG Warburg, the investment bank that was later swallowed by UBS. While there, he arranged some high-profile marriages, overseeing Anglo American's takeover of the DeBeers diamond company and Standard Chartered's acquisition of Korea First Bank. His long career at UBS came to an end in 2007, when Lazard hired him to rebuild its flagging presence in Europe. A successful MTN-Reliance hitch-up would win Lazard plenty of prestige in Africa and India, two markets where the investment bank is less well known. A former anti-apartheid activist, Costa has also become a bestselling author and guru. In 'God at Work', the devout Christian explains how to reconcile faith with the workplace. He is also chairman of Alpha International, an evangelical organization, and a trustee of the Nelson Mandela Children's Fund.
    Ken Costa

    Jignesh Shah
    In late May 2008, a deal was signed to create MCX Africa, a pan-African commodities exchange to be located in Gaborone, Botswana. The exchange is the brainchild of Jignesh Shah, a young billionaire entrepreneur from Mumbai, India. Shah trained as an engineer at the University of Mumbai before studying capital markets at the New York Institute of Finance. In 1990, he returned to India to join the Bombay Stock Exchange and was part of the team that developed the BSE's online trading platform. Later, Shah and partners Joseph Massey and Anjani Sinha founded Financial Technologies India Ltd. (FTIL), which offered an automated commodities trading system. In 2003, the partners used FTIL's platform to create MCX. Within four years, MCX became India's largest commodities exchange. His fortune assured, Shah took his trading system on the road. He set up the Dubai Gold and Commodities Exchange in 2005. Another exchange, the Global Board of Trade in Mauritius, is under way. Hopes are high for the new exchange in Botswana, which seeks to replicate MCX's stellar success. The Executive Director of MCX Africa is Chris Goromonzi, a South Africa-based Zimbabwean who was a founder of Trust Holdings.
    Jignesh Shah

    Francisco Ou
    Francisco Ou became Taiwan's Foreign Minister on 20 May 2008, as the Kuomintang (Chinese Nationalist Party, KMT), in opposition for eight years, returned to executive power on the back of Ma Ying-jeou's promises of improved ties with China (AAC Vol 1 No 5). Optimists saw progress in the 12-13 June 2008 talks between the two sides. The rivals signed agreements to open direct passenger flights across the Taiwan Strait and to increase Chinese tourism to Taiwan. So on the back burner, for now, appear to be the 'dollar diplomacy' battles that Taiwan has fought, and largely lost, for decades. Ou is a career diplomat with long experience in Latin America, one of Taiwan's main battlegrounds for recognition. He has seen postings in Peru, Nicaragua, Argentina and most recently Guatemala. During this time, he served strongman Chiang Ching-kuo, Chiang Kai-shek's son, and each of Taiwan's three elected Presidents. Ou pledged to strengthen ties with existing allies rather than pursue new ones. Yet Taiwan's renewed discussions with China are handled by semi-official organisations dedicated to cross-strait relations. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs is not involved. In his first month in office, Ou faced charges of disloyalty to Taiwan after oppositionists discovered he had obtained permanent residency in the United States while he was ambassador to Guatemala. (The green card was relinquished before he took office.) Then relations with Japan took a hit: on 10 June, a Japanese Coast Guard patrol collided with and sunk a Taiwanese fishing boat off the Senkaku islands. The uninhabited islands abound with mineral resources and are claimed by Japan, China and Taiwan. Ou recalled Taiwan's Tokyo representative in protest. Ou resigned from his post on September 10, 2009 following a government reshuffle.
    Francisco Ou

    Hu Deping
    Facing a growing demand for agricultural products while its wealthy business people seek new opportunities, Chinese companies are searching for investments in Africa that go beyond energy and mineral resourses. A key figure in linking Chinese and African enterprises is Hu Deping and his China-Africa Business Council (CABC). Hu's initiative is partly funded by the United Nations Development Programme. The CABC bills itself as a non-governmental platform to develop partnerships between African and Chinese private enterprises. Most recently, Hu led a 64-member delegation to Ghana, Tanzania and Uganda for two weeks in mid-April. The delegation looked at agriculture and tourism. Hu was born in 1942 in Hunan and studied history at Beijing University. After graduation in 1967, he spent some years in agricultural and factory labour before joining the National Museum of China, where he became Deputy Director. While at the Central Party School, the training center for the political elite, in the early 1980s, he befriended classmate and future President Hu Jintao. The relationship has served both men well. Hu Deping is the eldest son of a high-ranking politician - Hu Yaobang, a reform-minded General Secretary of the Communist Party. Hu Jintao's access to Hu Yaobang is said to have been instrumental in the former's rise to the Chinese presidency. Public grief surrounding Hu Yaobang's death in 1989 led to the democracy protests in Tiananmen Square, Beijing, that were violently put down by the army. His son was involved in politics at the provincial level and, as hard-liners tightened their grip on the Party, he seemed destined to remain there. Since then, however, events have turned slowly in his favour. Hu holds several influential positions in China's private sector. He is Vice-Chairman of the All-China Federation of Industry and Commerce that informally links party leadership and the private sector, and also welcomes foreign investors to China. He is Vice-Chairman of a non-governmental organisation of Chinese entrepreneurs that focuses on poverty reduction and Deputy Director of the Central Committee's United Front Work Department. On 13 March, the President secured a place for Hu on the standing committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, a body that advises the Chinese parliament.
    Hu Deping

    Akhil Gupta
    Largely overshadowed by the family name and media attention devoted to Sunil Bharti Mittal, Akhil Gupta is Bharti Airtel's other Managing Director. Mittal is credited with the vision, but Gupta is the architect who has guided Bharti Airtel's growth. Both directors have been in London this month to discuss acquiring a controlling stake in MTN, the South Africa-based mobile telephone giant that provides services to 68 million subscribers in 21 African and Middle-Eastern countries. Bharti has described the talks as 'exploratory', which has not dampened investors' excitement a whit. The chartered accountant and former small-time entrepreneur has been a loyal fixture at Mittal's side since joining the company in 1994. At the time Bharti was a small manufacturer of push-button phones, supplying the Department of Telecommunications. That year, Bharti won its first cellular license and began operation as a cellular provider the following year, initially in partnership with British Telecom and Telecom Italia. Arriving late into the market, Bharti has grown to become the largest. It now serves 62 mn. wireless customers, a market share of about 24%. The rapid expansion was helped by innovative outsourcing deals that Gupta brokered: Bharti's IT management is handled by IBM, and its network is managed by Ericsson, Nokia and Siemens. The Bharti IPO in 2002 made Gupta a millionaire and a leadership restructuring in 2007 made him both Joint Managing Director and Director of Strategy of Bharti. Mittal has stated that he hopes to relinquish the day-to-day running of Bharti Airtel by his 50th birthday, due on 23 October. Industry observers will be watching the day, and Gupta, closely.
    Akhil Gupta

    Tiong Hiew King
    Malaysia's Rimbunan Hijau is the international logging company whose activities have fuelled Asian construction for 30 years. Despite heated criticism from environmental groups, Tiong Hiew King has become one of Malaysia's richest men. His international empire now encompasses property development and media enterprises. An ethnic Chinese, Tiong was born in Sibu, Sarawak in 1935. His career in timber began in his teens; he tapped rubber and later joined an uncle's timber company. Rimbunan Hijau began as a logging company in 1975 and it now has international logging activities in south-east Asia, North America, Russia, and in Africa in Equatorial Guinea and Gabon. Rimbunan portrays itself as a responsible logger, but Greenpeace and other organisations have criticised the company's operations for both their scale and their methods. Tiong is well-known in the Chinese-speaking world as a media magnate, if perhaps a reticent one. He rarely grants interviews and his control of much of Malaysia's Chinese press is seen as an attempt to shield Rimbunan's activities from the limelight. In 1995, he acquired the Hong Kong-based Ming Pao Group, extending Rimbunan's global reach. Ming Pao publishes newspapers in Hong Kong and four North American cities.
    Tiong Hiew King

    Masato Kitera
    Masato Kitera is a typical example of the dependable civil servants that Japan has assigned to its Africa projects in advance of TICAD IV, to be held in Yokohama on 28-30 May 2008. Kitera has been the Director General for African Affairs at the Foreign Ministry since January 2008. The Director General has increasingly found himself fielding questions of how TICAD IV will respond to the agricultural concerns of Africa. This year's conference, as originally conceived, was intended to make a strong stand on climate change, but lately matters of agricultural assistance and food aid have taken on unexpected urgency. At the same time, Japan must balance its tightening aid budget against grand visions for its 'Year of Africa'. Japan is now tinkering with the 'Yokohama Declaration', scheduled for the conference's conclusion, to produce a well-rounded and substantial set of initiatives. Kitera has long been involved in the economic affairs of the Foreign Ministry since joining in 1976. A long stint in the Economic Cooperation Bureau saw him become Director of the Grant Aid Division. He has been a Minister to the World Trade Organisation, the United Nations and the UN Conference on Trade and Development. Foreign assignments have included Japan's Embassies in France and Thailand. As Deputy Director of the Economic Affairs Bureau, he maintained Japan's two-year ban on beef imports from the United States over health concerns.
    Masato Kitera

    Nobutake Odano
    As the man responsible for coordinating the fourth Tokyo International Conference on African Development scheduled for May 28-30 2009, Ambassador Nobutake Odano has covered a lot of miles in the last six months. Shuttling between Tokyo and Africa, Odano has led preparatory meetings in Zambia, Tunisia, Tanzania and Gabon, with stopovers in London and Brussels to drum up support. Japan's choice of an efficient, experienced diplomat highlights the importance it places on the TICAD IV proceedings. Born in 1948, Odano studied economics at Keio University, Japan's oldest university, which boasts numerous political luminaries among its graduates. He entered the foreign service in 1970. In 1989, he began a long string of international postings, as a counsellor at Japan's embassy to Britain. At the same time, he was a fellow at the Royal Institute of International Affairs, Chatham House. The following year, he moved to the Embassy in Germany, where he spent four years. He has also served as Ambassador to Australia and to Myanmar, twice. Returning to Tokyo, he became more closely involved in African affairs in 1995 when he was appointed Director of Planning for the Japan International Cooperation Agency. He took a direct role in the TICAD III preparations as the Foreign Ministry's Director-General for African Affairs, where he managed foreign relations with the African continent.
    Nobutake Odano

    Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala
    Married to Dr Ikemba Iweala, 4 children Education: Harvard University, 1977; PhD, Regional Economics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), United States. Career: Special Assistant to the Senior Vice-President, Operations, World Bank, 1989-91; Director of Institutional Change and Strategy, World Bank, 1995-97; Country Director, Malaysia, Mongolia, Laos and Cambodia, World Bank, 1997-2000; Deputy Vice-President, Middle East Region, World Bank, 2000-03; Minister of Finance and Economy, 2003-06; Minister of Foreign Affairs, June-August 2006; Managing Director, World Bank, 2007 to date. Commentary: Born in 1954, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala studied economics at Harvard University, then earned a PhD in regional economics and development from MIT in 1981. She joined the World Bank, where she spent 21 years as a development economist. She became intimately familiar with the economies of East Asia, putting in two tours in the region, and acting as country director for Malaysia, Mongolia, Laos and Cambodia. She is remembered in Nigeria for the new fiscal discipline she brought to the nation's finances. She returned to Nigeria in 2003, at the invitation of President Olesegun Obasanjo. As his Finance Minister, she arranged the cancellation of US$18 billion of Nigeria's debt to the Paris Club, a group of creditor nations, in 2005. The remaining $12 bn. of debt was paid the following year with money saved in budget reforms she enacted. At the same time, she attacked corruption and accelerated privatisation and liberalisation. She signed Nigeria up to the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative, a voluntary standard for petroleum and mining industries. On her watch, Nigeria's inflation more than halved. In June 2006, Obasanjo shook up his cabinet, giving Okonjo-Iweala the Foreign Ministry but allowing her to keep an eye on external debt. When this responsibility was taken from her a few months later, she resigned from the government. Despite rumours that she would run in the 2007 presidential election, she took a job with Moscow-based Renaissance Capital before Robert Zoellick, World Bank President, lured her back to the organisation. From December 2007 to July 2011, she was Managing Director for Africa, South Asia, Europe and Central Asia. She oversaw a diverse mix of infrastructure and regional integration projects. As financial and food supply concerns grip the globe, the World Bank is preparing aid packages to vulnerable nations. On a recent trip to Delhi, she became Bangladesh's advocate against India's tightening of rice exports. In July 2011, Okonjo-Iweala resumed her role in Nigeria's cabinet as Finance Minister, leaving her post at World Bank.
    Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala

    Jean Ping
    The career of Gabon’s consummate diplomat owes its success less to the impact he made as President of the United Nations General Assembly in September 2004-05 than his accomplishments as head of cabinet to the country’s veteran President, El Hadj Omar Bongo Ondimba in 1984-90. Ping started off his career at the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation in 1972, before becoming Gabon’s Ambassador to the institution from 1978 to 1984. He moved on to President Omar Bongo’s cabinet, jumping from one ministerial office to another, with stints at Information, Finance, Mines, and Foreign Affairs, before settling at the latter post in 1999. Ping has built up strong diplomatic credentials across Africa and won the Chairmanship of the African Union Commission on 1 February 2008 with 31 of 46 votes in a single round of voting. A popular choice in Central, Western and North Africa, he lacked such support in Southern Africa, where South Africa is said to have wanted a candidate of greater substance. Ping faces a hard task: reforming an AU plagued by disfunction and unable to focus on internal reform because of relentless crises in a host of countries, headed by Sudan, Somalia and Chad. He says that his motto there will be 'less talk, more work'. Born in November 1942 to a Chinese father and a Gabonese mother in Omboué, Gabon, Ping’s attachment to China is more nuanced than his nickname of ‘Mao’. As Foreign Minister since 1999, he has led Gabon’s campaign to open up trade with non-traditional partners including China, Brazil and South Africa. Ping is uncritical of the Chinese, who signed a controversial US$3 billion iron ore-backed deal for the development of the Bélinga deposit in northeastern Gabon in 2006, saying: ‘With China, everything is simple. She gives us debt forgiveness or long-term loans without interest or conditions.’ As a former President of the Organisation of Oil Producing Exporting Countries in 1993 and along with all his other jobs, Ping has a reputation as a globetrotter. He has also accompanied Bongo in his mediation efforts to São Tomé, Chad, Central African Republic and Congo-Kinshasa. According to local observers, Ping prefers to avoid Gabon’s messy local politicking and the ruling Parti Démocratique Gabonais, as he has the ear of the President himself. Ping has two children with the President’s daughter and current head of the presidential Cabinet, Pascaline Bongo, and is married to an Italo-Ivorian, Jeanne-Thérèse.
    Jean Ping

    Mr Shantayanan Devarajan (Shanta Devarajan)
    The effects of the global slowdown on African economies have been generally overlooked. The World Bank has responded with its advocacy of more regional integration and infrastructure development, and a proposal for the G-20 summit in London on 2 April 2009 that 0.7% of rich countries' stimulus packages should go to poorer countries. As Chief Economist for the Bank's Africa Region, Shanta Devarajan is the public face of its efforts. A brainy econometrist, Devarajan is a busy blogger: he uses his 'AfricaCan' blog on the World Bank website to stimulate debate and publicise new research. An engaging campaigner for new thinking on development economics, he has won over several sceptical policymakers and academics. He stresses the human impact of the economic crisis rather than the effects on the big banks' balance sheets. The crisis is 'not remotely Africa's fault', and Shanta argues that African governments have the least latitude to deal with its consequences. Originally from Sri Lanka, Shanta studied mathematics at Princeton University and earned his PhD in economics from the University of California, Berkeley. He left the faculty of Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government to join the World Bank in 1991. He has been Chief Economist of the Bank's Human Development Network, which crafts strategies to improve health, education and relieve poverty. Shanta was Chief Economist for South Asia before moving to the Africa section in January 2008. With Finland's Ritva Reinikka, he led the writing of the World Development Report 2004 and edited the World Bank Research Observer.
    Mr Shantayanan Devarajan (Shanta Devarajan)

    Victoria Kwaka
    Economist Victoria Kwakwa started her job as World Bank Country Director for Vietnam in April 2009. It is an important posting, given Vietnam's economic record over the past three decades and its high gross domestic product growth following one of Asia's most devastating wars. Previously, Kwakwa worked on poverty reduction and economic management in the Bank's East Asia and Pacific division. From Vietnam, she reported on foreign direct investment during the 1997 Asian financial crisis and continued to monitor its effects there and in neighbouring Laos and Cambodia. In 1999, Kwakwa joined the editorial team that prepared the Bank's annual World Development Report. She was later the Bank's lead economist for Nigeria, and often met former colleague (and now World Bank Managing Director) Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala. Kwakwa then became Country Director for Rwanda. Vietnam is the largest borrower from the International Development Association, the Bank's lending arm that serves the poorest countries. Kwakwa will work with the government to establish creditworthiness, so that Vietnam is eligible for International Bank for Reconstruction and Development loans, which go to middle-income nations.
    Victoria Kwaka

    Chung Mun Chia (Alphonsus )
    Rwandan President Paul Kagame has secured Singapore's interest in Rwanda's future. Singapore Cooperation Enterprise's Chief Executive Officer, Alphonsus Chia, was in Kigali in February 2009 to talk up investment opportunities. This is all part of President Kagame's plan to transform Rwanda into an East African information technology hub and bring it into the ranks of the middle-income countries by 2020. Chia's February visit followed the announcement of development plans for Kigali, now home to a million people. SCE and its partner Surbana Urban Planning Group were contracted in early 2008 to draft the blueprint. Their plan includes new business districts in Muhima, Kimicanga and Nyarungenge. Slums occupy much of the land to be developed and new residential areas in Gasabo and Nyarungenge will be built for the resettled. The project will be funded by a 40 billion Rwandan franc (US$70.4 million) bond to be launched by Kenya's Dyer & Blair Investment Bank in April. SCE was created in 2006 by the Ministries of Foreign Affairs and Trade and Industry to export the skills of Singapore's public sector enterprises. Chia, then deputy CEO of International Enterprises Singapore, the government's export promoter, took up the reins as CEO. The Chairman is Peter Ho Hak Ean, Permanent Secretary at the Foreign Affairs Ministry. Chia studied business administration at the National University of Singapore, graduating in 1984 and returning to earn his master's in business administration in 1998. He worked in France and Belgium and for Singapore Airlines and Reed Exhibitions before joining the Trade and Industry Ministry in 2004.
    Chung Mun Chia (Alphonsus )

    Hu Jintao
    In April 2009, China's leader embarked on his fourth tour of Africa. The itinerary - Mali, Mauritius, Senegal and Tanzania - shows the range of relationships built up under Hu Jintao. These are medium-size economies with multi-party systems; three are Francophone, much to Paris's irritation. Hu, a former engineer, joined the Communist Party in 1964 and soon answered Mao Zedong's call to go to the countryside: he spent the 1970s in Gansu, an underdeveloped province, diligently climbing provincial party ranks. Where the Party sent him, Hu went. He became Party chief of Guizhou, then Tibet, where he stifled unrest in Lhasa in December 1988 with martial law. He returned to Beijing in 1992 as the youngest-ever member of the Politboro Standing Committee, and was groomed to succeed President Jiang Zemin (1989-2002). Some analysts saw Hu as a weak candidate: a bureaucrat with no military allies. By 2005, he had confounded the sceptics and consolidated his position; Jiang was pushed into full retirement and handed control of the military to Hu. Hu has won plaudits in China: he took power without major political ructions and will hand it over in the same way to Vice-President Xi Jinping in 2012. China, despite the global slowdown, remains a rising economic and diplomatic power and a counter to the United States. Yet Hu lacks the charisma of his Premier, Wen Jiabao; his appearance at the 2008 Beijing Olympics was wooden, not triumphant. However, the stern exterior may hide a more adventurous soul: Hu's old biography spoke of his enthusiasm for dancing as a student – lines since purged from the official record. Will African warmth summon the rhythms within? Will the call of Terpsichore overcome years of Party discipline? Hu stepped down on 15 November 2012 and was succeeded, as planned, by Xi Jinping, in early 2013.
    Hu Jintao

    Yukio Takaso
    Japan chaired the United Nations Security Council in February 2009. Its two-year term as a non-permanent member of the UNSC began 1 January. Taking the chair, Japan's Ambassador Yukio Takasu presented clocks to the Council members as a gentle reminder to his often tardy colleagues to arrive punctually at meetings. Takasu presides over a UNSC which will deliberate a raft of African issues. He joined UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon to call for more troops for the UN's mission in Congo-Kinshasa. The UNSC has welcomed the cooperation between the transitional government and the opposition Alliance for the Re-Liberation of Somalia but is ambivalent about sending UN peacekeepers. Japan sits in the middle of the row over the International Criminal Court's coming arrest warrant for Sudan President Omer el Beshir: the United States backs it and would veto attempts to defer it; China and Russia want the warrant deferred; Britain and France are wavering. Takasu will also have to listen to non-permanent members Burkina Faso, Uganda, Libya and Vietnam. Takasu knows the UN well. Involved in UN peacekeeping since his 1993-1997 tenure as Assistant Secretary General to Egypt's Boutros Boutros-Ghali, he was the administrator of the troubled UN missions to Rwanda and to the former Yugoslavia. Furthermore, he has been Japan's UN Ambassador before, from 1997 to 2000. Takasu also chairs the UN Peacebuilding Commission, which raises funds and helps to draft recovery plans for post-conflict countries and is active in Burundi, Central African Republic, Guinea Bissau and Sierra Leone. Takasu studied law at the University of Tokyo and Oxford University, and has served as Ambassador in the USA, Britain, Indonesia and Malaysia.
    Yukio Takaso

    T.C. Venkat Subramanian
    India Exim Bank has six overseas offices, including representation in Singapore, Senegal and South Africa, and its current Chairman, Subramanian, is a veteran of the business. After working at the Bank of India and the Industrial Development Bank of India, Subramanian joined Exim Bank at its founding in 1982 and has been Chairman since May 2001. Subramanian also chairs Global Procurement Consultants, an Exim Bank-led joint venture which has carried out procurement for World Bank-funded development projects in Eritrea, Ghana, Malawi, Nigeria and Uganda. Letters of credit from India's Exim Bank total US$3.2 billion worldwide, a fraction of Chinese levels. Recent credits include $25 mn. to Madagascar for rice and fertiliser projects and $25 mn. for the Elduem Sugar Project in Sudan (the first of $150 mn. promised). Exim Bank also finances Indian films; Dhoom 2 (2006), partly filmed in Durban, South Africa, was a top earner for Bollywood.
    T.C. Venkat Subramanian

    Sizwe Nxasana
    Education: BA, Commerce, University of Fort Hare; Bachelor of Accounting Science, University of South Africa, 1983. Career: Audit Supervisor, PricewaterhouseCoopers Int. Ltd.,1984-86; Business Advisor, Small Business Development Corporation, 1985-86; Finance Accountant, SA Sugar Distributions Ltd.,1986-89; National President, Absa Group Ltd., 1994-98; Managing Partner, Nkonki Sizwe Ntsaluba; CEO of Telkom, 1998-2006; Exectuive Director, of FirstRand Ltd., 2006 to date; CEO FirstRand Ltd., 2006 to date. Commentary: In 2009, Nxasana led negotiations for an alliance with China Construction Bank (CCB). The two banks have signed a deal which commits FirstRand (the second biggest bank in South Africa) to offer financial and advisory services to Chinese investors in Africa and CCB (the second biggest in China) to do the same for African companies in China. When Nxasana succeeded founder Paul Harris as CEO of FirstRand Ltd., the parent company of FirstRand Bank, he became the first black CEO among the four major South African banking groups. Nxasana has been on FirstRand's board since 2003. An unapologetic capitalist, he is not as involved in the ruling African National Congress as many other financially-minded people. Nxasana favours FirstRand's African expansion and the courtship of Asia. Nigeria is a target, as is Kenya. But the bank will close operations in recession-hit Europe. The CCB-FirstRand agreement is more modest than the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China's purchase of a 20% stake in Standard Bank in 2007. But the alliance will serve Nxasana's ambitions to develop business around Chinese investment. The Indian market will not be neglected: in 2009, FirstRand became the first African bank to open a branch in India.
    Sizwe Nxasana

    Yasukazu Hamada
    As the political head of a more outward-looking Japanese military, the Self-Defence Forces, Yasukazu Hamada took a robust line against pirates based in Somalia. In March 2009, he ordered two SDF destroyers to the Gulf of Aden, an unprecedented move under the restrictive terms of the post-Second World War constitution. Tokyo also planned to use its technical expertise more actively in United Nations peacekeeping, although many of the details were yet to be agreed. Hamada is a high-profile and determined operator: after studying business at Senshu University, he became Secretary to Finance Minister Michio Watanabe. He was later Secretary to his father, Koichi Hamada, a former leader of the Yakuza (criminal underground) who became a long-serving and controversial Liberal Democratic Party politician. Upon his father's retirement from the House of Representatives in 1993, Hamada was elected to the seat, in the Chiba constituency. Within the LDP, Hamada joined the party's Security Council in 1999, becoming its head in 2000. He was appointed to Taro Aso's cabinet in 2008. Treading carefully ahead of 30 August 2009 elections, Hamada and most of Aso's cabinet refrained from a visit to Yasukuni Shrine, a monument to the country's war dead. Among the 2,466,00 souls enshrined there are several architects of Japan's Second World War effort, who have since been classified as war criminals. Past visits, even in a private capacity, have incensed China, the Koreas and Taiwan. With the LDP trailing in the polls to the Democratic Party of Japan, Aso and his team were taking no chances. Hamada also provides vocals for the Parliamentarian band Gi!nz, a rock and roll act formed by four lawmakers. Their 2005 album, 'Agree to Disagree', raised funds for a bone marrow donor programme.
    Yasukazu Hamada

    Jiang Weiqiang
    Jiang Weiqiang and his State Council Information Office colleagues was set to play a leading role in Beijing's media courtship of Africa ahead of the fourth Forum on China-Africa Cooperation in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt in November 2009. At the FOCAC Media Seminar in Beijing, 15-19 July, Jiang tried to develop a united front with African state media organisations. He insisted that the message of China-Africa cooperation should be taken directly to the people and not depend on Western media, which he described as anti-China and anti-Africa. Representatives from 27 African countries attended, as did Assistant Foreign Minister Zhai Jun and Liu Yunshan, Politburo member and Director of the Central Propaganda Department. Trained as an engineer, Jiang entered the People's Liberation Army in 1970. While serving, he studied English at the Luoyang PLA College of Foreign Languages, responsible for training intelligence agents. In 1991, Jiang left the PLA to join the SCIO, the administration overseeing China's state media, including the People's Daily newspaper and Xinhua news agency. Xinhua is planning its own multi-billion dollar global and African media expansion (AAC Vol 2 No 4). From 1996 to 2000, Jiang was seconded from SCIO to New York, where he was spokesman at the Consulate General. As head of SCIO's International Bureau, he masterminded the effort to promote China's social and economic record ahead of the 2008 Beijing Olympics. SCIO also produces China's human rights White Papers. Beijing began releasing these in 1991 to counter criticism of its human rights practices and to articulate a vision of human rights that emphasises economic development while putting political reform on the back burner. In 2004, SCIO and South Africa's Government Communication and Information System signed an agreement calling for cooperation and exchange programmes. Similar agreements have been signed with Kenya's Ministry of Information.
    Jiang Weiqiang

    Seiko Hashimoto
    Seiko Hashimoto brings Olympic glamour to the Africa-Asia axis. Born in 1964 in Hokkaido, she competed in seven Olympic Games, four as a speed skater and three as a cyclist. After taking a bronze medal in the women's 1,500-metre speed skating event at the Albertville games of 1992, she parlayed her sports career into a seat in the House of Councillors, the upper house of Japan's Diet, on the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) ticket. First elected in 1995, Hashimoto is now serving her third consecutive six-year term. In 2003, she became Deputy Secretary General of the LDP. Prime Minister Taro Aso appointed her State Secretary for Foreign Affairs, a vice-ministerial post under Foreign Minister Hirofumi Nakasone, in 2008. In April, Hashimoto attended the Conference in Support of the Somali Security Institutions and the African Union Mission in Somalia in Brussels, reiterating Japan's continued financial and technical support for the Transitional Federal Government in Mogadishu. On 11-14 June 2009, Hashimoto led a business delegation to Rwanda to explore tourism opportunities. While in Kigali, she announced Japan's plans to open an embassy there in 2010. From there, she flew to Kampala to attend the Africa-Asia Business Forum (15-17 June). Although the Forum took tourism development as its theme, Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni took the chance to push for greater access to Asian markets for African crops. The Forum is one of the measures supported by 2008's Tokyo International Conference on African Development IV.
    Seiko Hashimoto

    Gurjit Singh
    Long-serving diplomat Gurjit Singh distinguished himself as one of the most activist ambassadors in Addis Ababa and personally raised the substance and profile of Ethiopia-India relations. Singh has just ended a four-year stint that saw Delhi's presence in Ethiopia grow dramatically with 439 investment projects that will bring in US$4.2 billion. Singh reckons that investment will soon grow to $8-10 bn. Singh joined the Ministry of External Affairs in 1980. He has served in Japan, Sri Lanka, Kenya and Italy. As a writer, he has published on Japan-India commercial relations and India's engagement with the African Union. In 2005, he moved to the Addis embassy, India's first in Africa, while he was also Ambassador to Djibouti and the AU. His appointment ended 9 August; following his success, the government is likely to use Singh's experience elsewhere in its plans to boost relations with Africa. Agriculture dominates India's interest in Addis as the sector has already attracted $2.5 bn. in investments. Trade, while still small, has grown strongly. Bilateral trade increased from $83.3 mn. in 2006 to $211.4 mn. in 2008. Trade with Djibouti has seen similar growth, from $233.7 mn. in 2006 to $462.5 mn. in 2008. India's Export-Import Bank, which will set up an office in Addis this year, has committed $640 mn. for Ethiopia's sugar industry. Foreign agricultural investment worries more nationalist elements in the Ethiopian government, but has been welcomed by Premier Meles Zenawi. China and South Korea follow India's lead, planning projects to bolster their food security.
    Gurjit Singh

    Michael Chilufya Sata (King Cobra)
    Neither age nor ill-health seem to dampen the fire in the belly of Michael Sata. Born 1937, 'King Cobra' lost none of his bite, even after losing presidential elections in 2001, 2006 and 2008. After a decade in opposition, he was elected President in September 2011. From early on, Michael Sata has sided with the winner. He rose to prominence in the ruling United National Independence Party under Kenneth Kaunda, serving as Lusaka Governor and later as a UNIP member of Parliament. He defected to the Movement for Multiparty Democracy shortly before Frederick Chiluba won the Presidency in 1991. He was MMD National Secretary and a Minister without Portfolio under Chiluba, but broke with the party in 2001 after Levy Mwanawasa was chosen as its presidential candidate. Sata formed the Patriotic Front (PF) that year, striking a populist line and luring disenchanted MMD members. Food and fuel prices are Sata's main targets, as is the increasing Asian commercial presence. Such was the virulence of his 2006 campaign that Chinese Ambassador Li Baodong threatened to cut ties if Sata won. The furore gave Sata a boost, as did campaign contributions from China's diplomatic rival Taiwan, but he was unable to convert it into a victory. Zambia's relations with China continue to deepen despite such mishaps. Sata, recovering from a heart attack and perhaps chastened by his election failures, toned down the anti-China rhetoric for the 2008 campaign that followed President Mwanawasa's death. Although opposed by Sata's PF, China Nonferrous Metals Mining took over the state's failed Luanshya Copper Mines in May. In late July, the Zhonghui Mining Group announced plans to invest US$3.6 billion over five years.
    Michael Chilufya Sata (King Cobra)

    Dai Bingguo
    Dai Bingguo was last in Africa in February 2009, when he accompanied President Hu Jintao to Saudi Arabia, Mali, Senegal, Tanzania and Mauritius. The low-key diplomat's nondescript title of State Councillor belies his the extent of his influence in China's foreign affairs. Born in 1941, Dai studied Russian at Sichuan University and China Foreign Affairs University. This led to diplomatic postings to the Soviet Union (1969-73) and, as Ambassador, to Hungary (1989-91). He rose to become Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs before transferring to the Communist Party of China's own foreign affairs institutions. He was head of the CPC International Liaison Department (1997-2003), Secretary of the CPC Committee at the Foreign Ministry (2003-07) and State Councillor (from May 2008). Dai currently runs the general offices of the Leading Group on Foreign Affairs and the Leading Group on National Security. These inner-circle groups, both headed by President Hu Jintao and president-in-waiting Xi Jinping, set the direction of policy for the Foreign Ministry. Here, in seniority and power, Dai outranks Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi. The hierarchy became clear when President Hu abruptly abandoned the 2009 G8 summit in L'Aquila, Italy, in early July. While Hu returned home to supervise the quelling of Uighur-Han clashes in China's restive western province of Xinjiang, Dai effortlessly picked up where his President had left off. He attacked the US dollar's dominance as a reserve currency and conferred with South African President Jacob Zuma, Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, and other leaders of the G5 rising giants. Dai's role in the CPC becomes more important because China's enagagement in Africa leads to more party-to-party cooperation, as is the case with South Africa's governing African National Congress.
    Dai Bingguo

    Najib Razak
    Najib Razak's political pedigree is impeccable, but he struggles with the common touch needed to enact his liberal, but potentially unpopular, economic policies. Born 1953, Najib is the son of Abdul Razak Hussein, the second Premier of Malaysia. After brief stints working for the Bank Negona and Petronas, he ran for his late father's parliamentary seat in 1976. Najib, 23 and unopposed, became the country's youngest MP. Najib's support within the party machine of the United Malays National Organisation cemented his ascendency. As head of the UMNO Youth, he built a political base of his own while earning the patronage of his elders. He held a variety of cabinet posts, including Education (1995-2000) and Defence (1991-95, 2000-08). From 1993 to 2009, he was one of the six Vice-Presidents of UMNO and was elected UMNO President in March. He was Deputy Prime Minister to Abdullah Ahmad Badawi from 2004 and became Finance Minister in 2008. Upon assuming the premiership in April 2009, Najib retained the Finance portfolio, keeping a tight grip on the economy. In his first 100 days as Prime Minister, he rolled back affirmative action policies which had been popular with UMNO's Malay base. In foreign policy, continuity outweighs change. At the 15th Summit of the Non-Aligned Movement, held in Egypt in July, Najib emphasised Malaysia's affinity with the Middle East and North Africa. On 1 July 2009, he launched Felda Global Ventures, an overseas arm of the Federal Land Development Authority. Felda is Malaysia's - and the world's - largest plantation development agency, overseeing 800,000 hectares. Felda has operated a Sierra Leone plantation since 2006. With 6 billion ringgit (US$1.7 bn.) to invest, Felda Global plans a push into overseas - including African - markets.
    Najib Razak

    R. S. Sharma
    R.S. Sharma has the top job at India's Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC), a state-owned company with a growing global agenda. Market capitalisation makes ONGC India's second-largest company, trailing Reliance Industries, Mukesh Ambani's conglomerate. Sharma joined ONGC in 1988 as Joint Director of Finance and became Director of Finance in 2002. After Subir Raha left ONGC in May 2006, Sharma became acting Chairman and Managing Director. In July 2007, after a year-long search for Raha's replacement, Sharma emerged as the top candidate. The government opted for Sharma's stable hand over a reformer, but his appointment was greeted with indifference by analysts and investors, who saw a missed opportunity for fresh leadership. His tenure ends in 2011. ONGC is the most profitable company in India, but it is still hampered by government policies, such as a cap on natural gas prices that is lower than production costs. Sharma said the company lost 30 billion rupees (US$630 million) on natural gas sales in the last fiscal year. Those results mean ONGC must put on hold some of its downstream expansion plans. As domestic production declines, overseas expansion is key to India's oil security, which it pursues through its subsidiary, ONGC-Videsh (OVL). OVL, also chaired by Sharma, has joint ventures in Congo-Brazzaville, Egypt, Libya, Nigeria, the Nigeria-São Tomé Joint Development Zone and Sudan. Having competed in vain with China, OVL is now trying cooperation: in Sudan, it works with the China National Petroleum Corporation and Malaysia's Petronas. Sharma also serves on the boards of the Indian Oil Corporation and ONGC Mittal Energy, which has two exploration blocks in Nigeria.
    R. S. Sharma

    Nong Duc Manh
    Education: Leningrad Forestry Institute, Soviet Union, 1966; Nguyen Ai Quoc Party School. Career: Joined the Communist Party of Vietnam (CPV) Political Bureau, 1992; elected Chairman of the National Assembly; CPV General Secretary, 2001-11. Commentary: Vietnam's revolutionary days are long since over and former CPV General Secretary Nong Duc Manh lead an outward-looking country committed to multilateral diplomacy, which took steps to mend relationships (and borders) with China, Laos and Cambodia. Now Vietnam is seeking to develop trade relations with Africa, reaching out to Algeria, Nigeria, Egypt, Morocco and Central African Republic. Nong Duc Manh was the most powerful member of the leading troika with President Nguyen Minh Triet and Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung. Said to be more liberal than his predecessor Le Kha Phieu, Manh had overseen a continuation of the doi moi (renovation) reforms that began in 1986 under General Secretary Nguyen Van Linh. The gradual dismantling of the command economy led to impressive long-term growth, but Manh still headed an authoritarian regime, which harshly suppressed dissent. Reporters Without Borders dubbed him a 'predator' for his treatment of critical journalists.
    Nong Duc Manh

    Musa Hitam
    Malaysia's Sime Darby has signed a US$800 million deal securing a 63-year concession to 220,000 hectares in Liberia that include the troubled Guthrie Rubber Plantations. Sime Darby, a government-controlled plantation operator, is headed by Chairman Musa Hitam, who has a master's degree in international relations from Sussex University and is a member of the United Malays National Organisation, the largest party in the ruling Berhad Nasional coalition government. Previously, Musa was Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry, Minister of Primary Industries (1974-78) and Minister of Education (1978-1981). After serving as Mahatir bin Mohamad's Deputy Prime Minister (1981-1986), Musa was envoy to the United Nations (1990-1991), the UN Commission on Human Rights (1993-98), and the Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group (1995-2002). He is also Chairman of the Kuala Lumpur-based World Islamic Economic Forum. Sime Darby was formed in 2007 by the merger and listing of the state's three most successful plantation operators. The result was the world's largest oil palm plantation group, with some 100,000 employees and interests in property development, car dealerships, industrial equipment, energy and utilities. Though publicly-listed, it is controlled by two government investment holding companies, Permodalan Nasional Berhad and Yayasan Pelaburan Bumiputra. Both acquired assets with the help of preferential national policies and interest-free government loans.
    Musa Hitam

    Zhang Ming
    Zhang Ming rose to his position through the West Asia and North Africa Department of China's Foreign Affairs Ministry, which he joined in the early 1980s. Postings at the embassies in Yemen, Oman and Israel led to a stint as Deputy Director of the Foreign Ministry's general office in 2001. He was appointed Ambassador to Kenya in 2006. The diplomat kept a crowded calendar while in Nairobi, doling out development aid, opening a second Confucius Institute at Kenyatta University and meeting local artists. He also served as China's representative to the Nairobi-based United Nations Environment Programme and UN Habitat. After the violence surrounding Kenya's presidential elections in December 2007, China's People's Daily newspaper opined that 'Western-style democratic theory simply isn't suited to African conditions, but rather carries with it the root of disaster.' Zhang was left to face the outrage: he made a series of donations to humanitarian organisations as a salve for inflamed emotions. Zhang also worked to increase awareness of local issues among the growing number of Chinese visitors. In a 2009 interview with the Xinhua news agency, Zhang exhorted Chinese tourists to follow local laws and avoid purchasing ivory and products derived from endangered species. In March 2009, Zhang left Kenya to become Director of the Foreign Ministry's Africa department, coordinating the activities of China's embassies across the continent. As one of the highest ranking officials on Africa policy, Zhang is charged with defending China's pursuit of African resources. While climbing the ranks, he repeatedly stressed the idea that China is engaged with Africa for Africa's good, not China's. Asked about China's relationship with regimes like that in Sudan, Zhang retorted, 'Who has the right to tell us who the 'good' or 'bad' guy is anway?' Zhang's predecessor, Xu Jinghu, is now Ambassador to Morocco.
    Zhang Ming

    Hirofumi Nakasone
    Born in 1945, the Keio University graduate began his career with Asahi Chemical Industry in 1968 but turned to politics in 1983 after his father, Yasuhiro Nakasone, became Prime Minister (1982-1987). After three years as his father's secretary, Nakasone embarked on his own path. Africa is one of his many priorities - for strategic and reputational reasons. He was elected to the House of Councillors on the Liberal Democratic Party ticket in 1986, a seat he has held ever since. He has been Chairman of the Japan-Arab Parliamentary Friendship Association and President of the Japan-ASEAN Inter-Parliamentary Exchange Group. From 1990 to 1993, he was Vice-Minister of International Trade and Industry, and later Minister of Education and Minister of State for Science and Technology. He has been Prime Minister Taro Aso's Foreign Affairs Minister since September 2008. Nakasone replaced Masahiko Komura, who earned plaudits for his handling of the Tokyo International Conference on African Development IV in May 2008. Among his African duties are representing Japan's diplomatic interests in its Somali anti-piracy mission and boosting aid to the continent. At the late-March TICAD follow-up in Botswana, Nakasone reaffirmed Komura's pledge to double aid by 2012 - and announced an additional US$500 million in food assistance and disease prevention. Combating nuclear proliferation tops Nakasone's agenda. On 27 April he unveiled his '11 Benchmarks for Global Nuclear Disarmament'. A Middle East tour took him to Egypt and Iran (2-3 May), where he prodded Tehran to engage with United States' President Barack Obama. In Cairo, he met Foreign Minister Ahmed Aboul Gheit and President Hosni Mubarak. Though Mubarak opposes nuclear weapons proliferation in the region, his son (and likely successor) Gamal backs the construction of nuclear reactors.
    Hirofumi Nakasone

    Yuan Nangsheng
    After Mao Zedong completed his first Soviet-style Five Year Plan in 1954, China's economic problems deteriorated sharply. That year, China's Ambassador to Zimbabwe, Yuan Nansheng, was born, and his life reflects the vicissitudes of a childhood in Mao's China. Twelve years-old when the Cultural Revolution shut down China's educational system, Yuan went to work at the Hunan Yiyang Medicine Company, a job he held until he was 26. From there, he became a teacher at Hunan Arts and Crafts Vocational College, but it was not until he was 33 that he was able to attend Beijing University. After that, with a PhD in international relations, Yuan has carved out a career that encompasses academia, industry, party work and civil service. Yuan returned to Hunan, working for the Second Light Industry Group, and began to make a name as a writer, publishing on the hot topic of the time: foreign trade. When the government called for talented cadres to join the diplomatic corps, the Hunan branch of the Communist Party sponsored him. By 2000, he was Attaché at the Embassy in Egypt. As Ambassador to Zimbabwe since December 2006, he has had to manage Harare's expectations that China would always be there to rescue President Robert Mugabe's regime, although the China veto was used to block more serious sanctions against political leaders. During the 2008 electoral crisis, Yuan stuck to the party line that Zimbabwe could sort out its problems on its own.
    Yuan Nangsheng

    Kim Yong-nam
    Born in Pyongyang in 1928, while the Korean peninsula was under Japanese occupation, Kim Yong-nam came of age as Soviet-backed Kim Il-sung consolidated power over North Korea and set it on its singular, isolated path. He is as near as North Korea gets to a foreign policy guru. Kim attended Kim Il-sung University, studied at Moscow State University and then returned to Pyongyang to begin his smooth climb to the top of the ruling Workers' Party. He was elected to the party's Central Committee in 1970 and from 1974 was the head of its international department. From 1983 to 1998, he was Foreign Minister. A three-year mourning period after Kim Il-sung's 1994 death allowed his son Kim Jong-il to consolidate power. Elected Chairman of the Presidium, Kim Yong-nam's first act was to nominate Kim Jong-il to the Chair of the National Defence Commission, thereby formalising the succession on 5 September 1998. At 83, Kim Yong-nam is the regime's institutional memory and, as the Dear Leader rarely leaves the Hermit Kingdom, its top emissary. He visited Algeria, Egypt and Ethiopia in 2007, and Namibia, Angola, Congo-Kinshasa and Uganda in 2008 (AAC Vol 1 No 5). After dropping in on Singapore's S.R. Nathan on 6-8 May 2009, he flew to South Africa for Jacob Zuma's inauguration on 9 May. Hong Joon-pyo of South Korea's ruling Grand National Party announced he would court Kim in Pretoria with a view to Korean reconciliation. Kim's next stop was to pay perhaps a last visit to President Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe.
    Kim Yong-nam

    Thaksin Shinawatra
    Known for his polarising effect in Thai politics, his flight from justice and his interest in football teams in England, Thaksin Shinawatra also presided over a sharp increase in Thai trade with Africa. Before politics, he was a police officer with a doctorate in criminal justice. He then went into business and his computer company Shin Corporation, founded 1983, is now a telecommunications empire. Thaksin founded the Thai Rak Thai (Thais love Thais) party in 1998. It promised free medical care and debt relief to farmers. Many were surprised that a wealthy mogul should campaign against the Bangkok elite. His tenure in office was controversial, his policies were socially conservative. He reined in Thailand's rollicking nightlife to public acclaim, but his 2003 'War on Drugs' saw over 2,500 deaths in three months. Thaksin encouraged Thai trade with Africa: in 2005, exports of rice and manufactures doubled to US$1.2 billion with Bangkok's most important African trading partner, South Africa. It was the 2006 sale of his family's stake in Shin Corporation, by then a key national business, that tipped the scales against Thaksin. Though legal, the sale offended for two reasons: the family avoided tax and their shares went to Singapore's sovereign wealth fund. When Thaksin attended the United Nations General Assembly in September 2006, the military led a bloodless coup that left him in exile. In October 2008, he was convicted in absentia of corruption. Thaksin might have enjoyed a comfortable exile but he provoked his successors. After anti-government protests in Bangkok encouraged by him led to the cancellation of April's Association of Southeast Asian Nations meeting, the government revoked his passport. As Thaksin's residency options dwindle, some suggest he may move to Central African Republic. In late April 2009, he appeared in Liberia. He brought along representatives of Black Pearl Capital, a Dubai-based investment firm, for exploratory meetings with Vice-President Joseph Boakai and National Investment Commission Chairman Richard Tolbert. The sectors that may be targeted by Black Pearl are agriculture, hydrocarbons and mining.
    Thaksin Shinawatra

    Pornthiva Nakasai
    Education: BA, political science, Ramkhamhaeng University; Masters in Public Administration, Thammasat University. Career: Elected to the House of Representatives, 2006; Minister of Commerce, 2009 to date. Commentary: If effort can be measured in miles, Thailand's Commerce Minister is earning her pay. Nakasi travelled constantly in 2009, leading a delegation in late April to Nigeria, the largest African importer of Thai rice. Nakasi is fighting a contraction of Thailand's export-driven economy. Although demand is falling for manufactured goods, it remains strong for farm exports and Africa has a growing appetite for Thailand's crops. Rice accounted for US$2.6 billion of $6.8 bn. in exports to Africa in 2008, a 113% increase on the previous year. Nakasi hails from a leading business family whose real-estate empire includes Bangkok's biggest massage parlour, the ten-storey Poseidon. She is a member of the Bhum Jai Thai (Thai Pride) Party, the second-strongest of the six parties in the coalition government.
    Pornthiva Nakasai

    Nobuhide Minorikawa
    Nobuhide Minorikawa plays a leading role in the development of Japan's African diplomacy. With wide experience of development economics and diplomacy, he is a familiar face on the African conference circuit. In Tokyo, Minorikawa has served on various parliamentary committees and was appointed Parliamentary Vice-Minister for Foreign Affairs in August 2008. He attended the Third High-Level Forum on Aid Effectiveness in Ghana in September 2008 and led the Joint Mission for Promoting Trade and Investment to East Africa to Kenya, Uganda, Ethiopia and Tanzania. He visited Rwanda in December 2008 to offer help in resolving the crisis in eastern Congo-Kinshasa and accompanied Foreign Minister Hirofumi Nakasone to Botswana in March 2009 for a follow-up meeting after last May's Fourth Tokyo International Conference on African Development. Born in Omagari, Akita Province, in 1964, Minorikawa studied politics at Keio University and earned a master's at Columbia University's School of Public Policy and International Relations in New York. After a brief stint at Akita Bank in the late 1980s, he became private secretary to his father, Hidefumi Minorikawa, a four-term Liberal Democratic Party representative. After his father's death in 2003, Nobuhide ran as an independent in his father's constituency. He won a second term in 2005, this time on the LDP ticket.
    Nobuhide Minorikawa

    Pradeep Kumar Chaudhery
    After the India-Africa summit in April 2008 set out Delhi's new policies for the continent, Pradeep Kumar Chaudhery was given a leading role in the strategy with his appointment as Additional Secretary to the Department of Commerce in the Ministry of Commerce and Industry. Chaudery's predecessor was O.P. Arya, who became Chairman of the diamond industry's Kimberley Process in 2008. In late March, Chaudhery led a group of Indian businesspeople to Congo-Brazzaville. They attended a forum hosted by the Central African Economic and Monetary Community, which is promoting cross-border trade and development. India's main focus is on the region's petroleum, minerals and timber, but Anicet Georges Dologuélé, President of the Banques des Etats de l'Afrique Centrale, called for more private involvement in agriculture, finance, communications and health. The India Forum was to discuss deals worth billions of dollars but the details are yet to emerge. India's relationship with Congo-Brazzaville has grown steadily from a very low base since Commerce Minister Kamal Nath pledged to boost it in 2005. It is part of India's wider plans to increase its trade with Africa to US$70 billion (or about two-thirds of China's current trade with Africa) over the next five years. In his home state of Haryana, Chaudhery served in the Departments of Mines and Geology, Industries and Commerce, and Information Technology. He earned a master's in physics from Punjab University, joined the Indian Administrative Service in 1977 and has worked on rural development projects in his home district of Rohtak. As Deputy Secretary in the Steel Department until May 2008, he led the management of India's steel production.
    Pradeep Kumar Chaudhery

    Wu Zexian
    The posting of Wu Zexian, one of Beijing's most experienced Francophone diplomats, to Kinshasa in March 2007 shows the seriousness of China's Africa strategy. Initially, it looked like a surprising detour for Wu, who after 30 years in the diplomatic service had been appointed Director General of the Department of European Affairs in Beijing. Things became clearer by January 2008, when China Exim Bank signed a massive minerals countertrade deal with President Joseph Kabila for US$5 billion (later raised to $9 bn., AAC Vol 2 No 1). Wu has steered the deal has past several obstacles, including the scrutiny of Kinshasa's Mining Minister Victor Kasongo and 2008's sharp fall in mineral prices. The International Monetary Fund has sinced weighed in, threatening to deny Congo debt relief unless the deal is renegotiated (see page 5). Wu was outraged and described the threats as blackmail. Publicly, with ministerial support from Beijing, Wu has led a fiery attack on the IMF's position in what may be an elaborate 'good cop, bad cop' act in support of the deal. Privately, we hear that China Exim Bank is considering a more pragmatic move: to restructure the countertrade deal enough to satisfy IMF demands while helping secure Kinshasa some balance of payments support. Meanwhile, China would retain most of the mineral rights; that would be a considerable victory for Wu. Exim Bank's gamble is that the IMF cannot afford to be seen as blocking billions of dollars of much-needed investment in Congo's energy and mining sectors. The global downturn has not deterred Beijing's strategists from their focus on Africa's natural resources, but many private Chinese companies fled their Congo smelting operations when market demand slumped, infuriating Kinshasa's officials. Kinshasa is proving a challenge for Wu. Born in Jiangsu, he is a graduate of the Beijing Foreign Languages University, a training ground for China's diplomats. During his thirty years with the Foreign Ministry, Wu served three tours in France, the last as Ambassador from 2003-2006.
    Wu Zexian

    Alphonsus Chia Chung Mun
    Rwandan President Paul Kagame has secured Singapore's interest in Rwanda's future. Singapore Cooperation Enterprise's Chief Executive Officer, Alphonsus Chia, was in Kigali in February to talk up investment opportunities. This is all part of President Kagame's plan to transform Rwanda into an East African information technology hub and bring it into the ranks of the middle-income countries by 2020. Chia's February visit followed the announcement of development plans for Kigali, now home to a million people. SCE and its partner Surbana Urban Planning Group were contracted in early 2008 to draft the blueprint. Their plan includes new business districts in Muhima, Kimicanga and Nyarungenge. Slums occupy much of the land to be developed and new residential areas in Gasabo and Nyarungenge will be built for the resettled. The project will be funded by a 40 billion Rwandan franc (US$70.4 million) bond to be launched by Kenya's Dyer & Blair Investment Bank in April. SCE was created in 2006 by the Ministries of Foreign Affairs and Trade and Industry to export the skills of Singapore's public sector enterprises. Chia, then deputy CEO of International Enterprises Singapore, the government's export promoter, took up the reins as CEO. The Chairman is Peter Ho Hak Ean, Permanent Secretary at the Foreign Affairs Ministry. Chia studied business administration at the National University of Singapore, graduating in 1984 and returning to earn his master's in business administration in 1998. He worked in France and Belgium and for Singapore Airlines and Reed Exhibitions before joining the Trade and Industry Ministry in 2004.
    Alphonsus Chia Chung Mun

    Yukiya Amano
    The International Atomic Energy Agency is to decide on a successor to Egypt's Mohamed ElBaradei as Director-General on 26-27 March. Two IAEA Governors, Yukiya Amano and Abdul Samad Minty, have been jostling for the post since 2008. On ElBaradei's watch, the Agency uncovered clandestine nuclear activities in Libya, North Korea and Iran; the latter two remain to be tackled. Both candidates come from countries with unique perspectives on nuclear arms. Japan is the only country to have suffered a nuclear attack. South Africa built its own nukes but dismantled its programme after international pressure. Amano is thought to have wider support than Minty, but falls short of the necessary two-thirds majority. Minty commands credibility from his activist past. He was studying international relations at University College, London, in 1959 when he founded the British Anti-Apartheid Movement. The next two decades brought him close to leaders of the African National Congress and the Non-Aligned Movement. With the ANC he campaigned against South Africa's nuclear weapons programme, a goal realised in 1989-1991 when President F.W. de Klerk opened facilities to IAEA inspectors. Now a Deputy Director-General of Foreign Affairs, Minty has been an IAEA governor since 1995. The favoured candidate of the nuclear powers, Yukiya Amano, is likely to take a more functional route and avoid politics. His critics fear he will back the superpowers in blocking access to technology. To counter this, he has stressed his involvement in the Agency's health initiatives: cancer therapy and the successful tsetse fly eradication program in Tanzania and Ethiopia. Amano joined the Foreign Ministry in 1972 after graduating from Tokyo University. Between postings to embassies in the United States, Laos, Belgium and France, he carved out a niche in nuclear energy and arms control. Before becoming Japan's IAEA Governor in 2005, he was the Director-General for the Disarmament, Non-Proliferation and Science Department.
    Yukiya Amano

    Abdul Samad Minty
    The International Atomic Energy Agency is to decide on a successor to Egypt's Mohamed ElBaradei as Director-General on 26-27 March. Two IAEA Governors, Yukiya Amano and Abdul Samad Minty, have been jostling for the post since 2008. On ElBaradei's watch, the Agency uncovered clandestine nuclear activities in Libya, North Korea and Iran; the latter two remain to be tackled. Both candidates come from countries with unique perspectives on nuclear arms. Japan is the only country to have suffered a nuclear attack. South Africa built its own nukes but dismantled its programme after international pressure. Amano is thought to have wider support than Minty, but falls short of the necessary two-thirds majority. Minty commands credibility from his activist past. He was studying international relations at University College, London, in 1959 when he founded the British Anti-Apartheid Movement. The next two decades brought him close to leaders of the African National Congress and the Non-Aligned Movement. With the ANC he campaigned against South Africa's nuclear weapons programme, a goal realised in 1989-1991 when President F.W. de Klerk opened facilities to IAEA inspectors. Now a Deputy Director-General of Foreign Affairs, Minty has been an IAEA governor since 1995. The favoured candidate of the nuclear powers, Yukiya Amano, is likely to take a more functional route and avoid politics. His critics fear he will back the superpowers in blocking access to technology. To counter this, he has stressed his involvement in the Agency's health initiatives: cancer therapy and the successful tsetse fly eradication program in Tanzania and Ethiopia. Amano joined the Foreign Ministry in 1972 after graduating from Tokyo University. Between postings to embassies in the United States, Laos, Belgium and France, he carved out a niche in nuclear energy and arms control. Before becoming Japan's IAEA Governor in 2005, he was the Director-General for the Disarmament, Non-Proliferation and Science Department.
    Abdul Samad Minty

    Ma Ying-jeou
    As China's President Hu Jintao toured Africa in April 2009, his Taiwanese counterpart was conspicuously absent. Ma Ying-jeou has been trying to cool the diplomatic competition with Beijing. On 4 February 2009, Taipei's Foreign Ministry quashed rumours of a presidential tour of Taiwan's four African allies, Burkina Faso, Gambia, São Tomé e Príncipe and Swaziland. Days later, Foreign Minister Francisco Ou revealed that Ma would be visiting allies El Salvador and Panama in the middle of the year. Ma has long ridden a tide of popularity and favour. He was born in Hong Kong in 1950; his father, a Kuomintang (KMT) cadre, brought the family to Taiwan the following year. Ma grew up in elite circles. After studying law at National Chenchi University, he won KMT scholarships to New York and Harvard Universities. Returning to Taipei in 1981, Ma became a translator for President Chiang Ching-kuo. He served in various positions under Chiang's patronage and was Justice Minister under Chiang's successor Lee Teng-hui from 1993 to 1996. In 1998, he unseated Taipei's Mayor Chen Shui-bian and held the mayoralty until 2006. Ma resigned to fight corruption charges, won the case - and then the presidency, beating former human-rights lawyer Frank Hsieh in March 2008. Taiwanese politics are lively: blows are often exchanged in parliament. Yet Ma remains polite and restrained and enjoys broad support in urban areas. Those watching Ma for clues to the future of Taiwan-China ties may be looking in the wrong place: cross-strait negotiations are driven by KMT-Chinese Communist Party forums. Both current KMT Chair Wu Poh-hsiung and Honorary Chairman Lien Chan wield greater influence.
    Ma Ying-jeou

    Muhyiddin Yassin
    Muhyiddin Yassin is one of three vice-presidents of the United Malays National Organisation (UMNO), the leading member of the Barisan Nasional (National Front) coalition, and as Trade Minister, one of the most important figures in Malaysia's burgeoning trade with Africa. The coalition of ethnic Malay, Chinese and Indian parties has ruled since Malaysia gained Independence from Britain in 1957. UMNO was hit hard in the March 2008 elections, losing its two-thirds majority in parliament. Further damage came this month when it lost crucial parliamentary by-elections in Terengganu, a heavily Malay area. Slowing economic growth helped the opposition Parti Islam Se-Malaysia and cost the UMNO the seat. After that disaster, Prime Minister Abdullah Badawi will step down in March - and the succession battle is on. When the UMNO General Assembly meets on 24-28 March, its Deputy President Najib Abdul Razak expects to move uncontested into the presidency - and therefore the premiership of Malaysia. Muhyiddin and others are vying for Najib's job. The party's deputy president becomes vice-premier of the nation. It is not Muhyiddin's first attempt: a 2004 run was lost in an upset. Bright but not especially charismatic, Muhyiddin has spent recent years honing his reputation. His lack of international experience hamstrung his 2004 candidacy, but the International Trade and Industries post has dramatically raised his profile. And this month, the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development reported that Malaysia had won US$12.9 billion in foreign direct investment in 2008, far outperforming its Asian neighbours. On 5-6 January, Yassin hosted Egypt's Trade and Industry Minister, Rachid Mohamed Rachid. Bilateral trade is small but growing. The state car manufacturer, Proton, plans an assembly plant in Egypt and hopes to make gains in the Egyptian market. Rachid courted Azman Mokhtar, Director of the state investment corporation Khazanah Nasional Berhard. Egypt wants to lure Malaysia's construction and telecommunications firms into public-private infrastructure projects.
    Muhyiddin Yassin

    Chen Deming
    Born in 1949 in Shanghai, Chen studied business at Nanjing University, took a doctorate in management and joined the Communist Party in 1974. A job as assistant manager of a Taizhou meat-packing factory led to provincial leadership posts in Jiangsu, a coastal province and now one of China's wealthiest. Mayor of Suzhou in 1998-2000, he was Suzhou Party Secretary (a more powerful post) until 2002. Suzhou is the site of the export processing zones that attracted investment from Hong Kong, Taiwan and Singapore in the 1990s and now churn out China's high-tech exports. In 2002, the Party moved him to the less-developed Shaanxi Province, but in 2006 Chen moved up to the State Development and Reform Commission as Vice-Chairman. In December 2007, he took up his current post as Commerce Minister.
    Chen Deming

    Cho Hwan-eik
    Commentary: The President of the Korea Trade-Investment Promotion Agency (KOTRA) studied political science at Seoul National University, and has an MBA from New York University and a doctorate in business administration from Hanyang University. Cho Hwan-eik boasts deep familiarity with Korea's foreign trade. He has held a number of high-level positions, including Vice-Minister for Commerce, Industry and Energy (2004-2006) and President of the Korea Export Insurance Corporation, an office he held until assuming his new job in July 2008. South Korea's export-driven economy is suffering: in 2008, the country posted its first trade deficit since the Asian financial crisis in 1997. Cho is pursuing a twin-pronged strategy to turn around the economy, seeking new export markets and encouraging foreign industry to take advantage of the weak Korean won. KOTRA plans to cultivate African markets as a target for Korean electronic and consumer goods. Home electronics and mobile telecommunications will all receive a big push on the continent. South Korean construction and petroleum exploration operations are concentrated in North Africa, and KOTRA has a strong presence there with offices in Algeria, Morocco, Egypt and Libya. Regional offices in South Africa, Nigeria and Kenya will help extend South Korea's reach into the emerging markets below the Sahara.
    Cho Hwan-eik

    Ibrahim Ali Hassan
    The Assistant Foreign Minister for African Affairs is a fixture at the major Asian development events, the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation and the Tokyo International Conference on African Development. The long-serving diplomat has seen first-hand the rise of Asia in Africa and has led Egypt's delegations to TICAD in 1998 and to FOCAC since its first conference in 2000. Now Ibrahim Ali Hassan will head and coordinate the fourth ministerial conference of FOCAC in Sharm El Sheikh in late 2009. Egypt relishes its role as the regional vanguard of development and Hassan has worked hard to maintain its status. He is on the steering committee of the New African Partnership for Development, of which Egypt is one of the five founding members, and represented his country at the African Peer Review Mechanism summit in Benin in October 2008. China and Egypt are old allies: Egypt was the first African country to establish diplomatic relations with the People's Republic in 1956. Preparations for this year's FOCAC have already shown a taste for triumphalist talk about their respective ancient civilizations and their more recent economic successes. Where other donors have tightened their belts, China will seek to top its performance at the 2006 Beijing FOCAC. China's economy has contracted alarmingly since last autumn, but envoys insist that aid will not be cut. This year's agenda will focus on food security and infrastructure development. To further warm bilateral ties, China's Vice-Premier Li Keqiang led a trade delegation to Cairo on 24-27 December to discuss increasing Chinese investment in Egypt.
    Ibrahim Ali Hassan

    Vu Tien Loc
    In August 2008, the sun shone brightly on the Beijing Olympics. With Chinese Vice-President Xi Jinping providing behind-the-scenes muscle, the government forced factory closures and enacted draconian traffic restrictions. The veil of smog lifted at the last minute and the lion’s share of the credit goes to Liu Qi. As the head of the Beijing Olympic Organising Committee, Liu presided over the eight-year effort to revamp the host city. When the Games began, the world was suitably awed by the opening ceremony, events ran smoothly and the home team hauled in the medals. Minor kerfuffles – a possibly under-age gymnast and a lip-synched national anthem – were quickly forgotten: US$40 billion well spent. A victory lap for the maestro, then. On a 20-27 November tour, Liu stopped in Livingstone, Zambia, to view Victoria Falls – and to discuss tourism and trade with Southern Province Minister Daniel Munkombwe. He held talks with South African President Kgalema Motlanthe and African National Congress President Jacob Zuma. With Transport Minister Jeff Radebe and Gauteng Premier Paul Mashatile, Liu negotiated Chinese participation in infrastructure development for the 2010 Football World Cup. Before heading home, he stopped in Britain to give London Mayor Boris Johnson some advice on the city’s hosting of the 2012 Olympic Games. A metallurgical engineer by training, Liu joined the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) ranks while working at the Wuhan Iron and Steel Company. He rose to become its manager and then was appointed Minister of Metallurgical Industry. Liu was Mayor of Beijing from 1999 to 2002, then became the city’s CCP Secretary. His promotion was timely: the government’s sluggish reaction to the 2002-2003 Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) outbreak quickly scuttled the Mayorship of Liu’s successor, Meng Xuenong.
    Vu Tien Loc

    Liu Qi
    In August 2008, the sun shone brightly on the Beijing Olympics. With Chinese Vice-President Xi Jinping providing behind-the-scenes muscle, the government forced factory closures and enacted draconian traffic restrictions. The veil of smog lifted at the last minute and the lion’s share of the credit goes to Liu Qi. As the head of the Beijing Olympic Organising Committee, Liu presided over the eight-year effort to revamp the host city. When the Games began, the world was suitably awed by the opening ceremony, events ran smoothly and the home team hauled in the medals. Minor kerfuffles – a possibly under-age gymnast and a lip-synched national anthem – were quickly forgotten: US$40 billion well spent. A victory lap for the maestro, then. On a 20-27 November tour, Liu stopped in Livingstone, Zambia, to view Victoria Falls – and to discuss tourism and trade with Southern Province Minister Daniel Munkombwe. He held talks with South African President Kgalema Motlanthe and African National Congress President Jacob Zuma. With Transport Minister Jeff Radebe and Gauteng Premier Paul Mashatile, Liu negotiated Chinese participation in infrastructure development for the 2010 Football World Cup. Before heading home, he stopped in Britain to give London Mayor Boris Johnson some advice on the city’s hosting of the 2012 Olympic Games. A metallurgical engineer by training, Liu joined the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) ranks while working at the Wuhan Iron and Steel Company. He rose to become its manager and then was appointed Minister of Metallurgical Industry. Liu was Mayor of Beijing from 1999 to 2002, then became the city’s CCP Secretary. His promotion was timely: the government’s sluggish reaction to the 2002-2003 Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) outbreak quickly scuttled the Mayorship of Liu’s successor, Meng Xuenong.
    Liu Qi

    Tenzin Gyatso
    Commentary: Though the Dalai Lama has recently hinted at retirement, his capacity to ruffle China’s feathers is undiminished. His lecture in Lagos, Nigeria, on 28 November 2008, passed without incident or comment from Beijing. President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua scrupulously kept his distance, and the only controversial moment came when the Dalai Lama opined that sexual relationships ‘are always full of trouble’. With key business deals on the rocks and a failed Chinese satellite (AAC Vol 2 No 1), China did not make much fuss about the visit. But the next day, the Dalai Lama spoke about a possible trip to Taiwan in 2009; when President Ma Ying-jeou promptly declared a visit ‘not appropriate’, both the opposition and members of his own party accused him of placating Beijing. The Dalai Lama is widely respected in Taiwan and visited in 1997 and 2001. Finally, on 6 December 2008, French President Nicolas Sarkozy capped a poor year in China-France relations by meeting the Dalai Lama in Krakow, Poland. Beijing immediately postponed that month’s European Union-China summit. Rama Yade, Sarkozy’s forthright Minister of State for Human Rights, termed the Chinese reaction ‘un psychodrame’. Following spring 2008’s crackdown, which came after anti-Chinese rioting in Lhasa, talks with Chinese authorities went nowhere. In early November, the Dalai Lama expressed uncharacteristic pessimism: ‘I have to accept failure,’ he said.
    Tenzin Gyatso

    Deepak Kapoor
    The 26 November 2008 terrorist attacks in Mumbai that left 164 people dead and more than 300 wounded took place during General Deepak Kapoor’s African goodwill tour, but he did not rush home. Gen. Kapoor had just completed his tour of South Africa and Botswana (24-28 November). In South Africa, he met the Chief of the South Africa National Defence Forces, Gen. Godfrey Ngwena, and inspected SANDF facilities. While in Botswana, he called on Lieutenant Gen.Tebogo H. C. Masire, the Commander of the Botswana Defence Forces, and met Defence Minister Dikgakgamatso Seretse and President Lt. Gen. Seretse Khama Ian Khama. India and Botswana established defence links in 1978; since then the Indian Army Training Team has been working on a training programme with the BDF. Kapoor joined the army in 1967 when he was 19. He saw battle in the 1971 India-Pakistan War, then trained for command at the Defence Services Staff College in Wellington and the National Defence College in New Delhi. In 1994-95, he was Chief Operations Officer for the United Nations Operation in Somalia-Phase 2 (UNOSOM II), an unsuccessful mission to secure humanitarian operations. After UNOSOM II’s withdrawal, Kapoor returned to India. He commanded a division in Operation Pakaram in a ten-month standoff along the India-Pakistan border. He then served as commander of the Northern Army, and was promoted to Vice-Chief of Staff. He assumed his new post in September 2007. India’s strong economic growth means that in terms of salary the military cannot match the business sector in the competition for young talent. So Kapoor’s recent suggestion that conscription would be a useful measure to counter dwindling army recruitment caused a national panic. Minister of State for Defence Mallipudi Raju Pallam Mangapati quickly denied any plans for a draft.
    Deepak Kapoor

    Kang Man-soo
    South Korea has been hit hard by the financial crisis and Finance Minister Kang Man-soo has organised a US$11 billion stimulus package. He is maintaining the commitments he made at the Korea-Africa Economic Cooperation Conference on 27-30 October 2008 in Seoul. Korea pledged some $760 mn. in new finance for infrastructure and mining projects, with Angola as a favoured client. Kang spoke for developing nations alongside South Africa’s Trevor Manuel at September’s International Monetary Fund Board of Governors meeting and the emergency G-20 meeting in Washington in November. Seoul has a national interest in this: apart from Africa, Kang wants to see aid flowing to North Korea, his impoverished and unpredictable neighbor. Kang’s concern for development issues contrasts sharply with his tough image at home: he is in President Lee Myung-bak’s coterie and an ardent tax-cutter. Kang studied law at Seoul National University and economics at New York University. He joined the Finance Ministry in 1970, becoming Vice-Minister in 1997. When the 1997-98 Asian financial crisis revealed South Korea’s banking system to be opaque and inefficient, Kang lost his post. He then became a discreet advisor to President Lee, first when Lee was Seoul Mayor, and later on during Lee’s presidential campaign. That victory returned Kang to the Finance Ministry early this year. President Lee assesses Korea’s current financial situation to be as bad as it was during the 1997-98 crisis. Kang argues otherwise, pointing to increased foreign exchange reserves. Opposition politicians still scuttled Kang’s trip to the G-20 finance ministers’ meeting 8-9 November in Brazil, demanding he stay to face questions over his handling of the economy. Deputy Minister Shin Je-yoon took his place.
    Kang Man-soo

    Kamal Nath
    Former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak wanted more trade with India. During his 16-19 November 2008 trip to New Delhi, he marketed Egypt as a gateway to Africa and an attractive investment in its own right. The pitch fell on the ears of former Commerce Minister Kamal Nath, who was interested in building an Indian industrial zone there. Indian imports mainly oil and gas from Egypt. Bilateral trade stands at US$3 bn. annually; the two countries wanted that to rise to $10 bn. by 2010. India will need to diversify its imports. As Commerce Minister since 2004, Nath championed India’s new Foreign Trade Policy, a more liberal strategy than under his predecessors, that aims to double exports from 2004-2009. The export target had already been surpassed; Nath then talked of procuring ‘those imports which are required to stimulate our economy’. In 1980, Nath was elected to Lok Sabra, the lower house in India’s parliament, for Chhindwara constituency, and held the seat in six subsequent terms. In 1991, he took his first cabinet post, as Minister for Environment and Forests. He later served as Textiles Minister. He became Secretary General of the Indian National Congress party in 2001, then took up his post at the Commerce Ministry in May 2004. Minister Nath opened the Plenary Meeting of the Kimberly Process in New Delhi 3-6 November 2008. India had taken the chair of the KP just as the effects of the financial slowdown hit the international diamond trade.
    Kamal Nath

    Uwe Wissenbach
    Many European Union diplomats believe their continent’s influence is being sidelined as China boosts its investments and profile in Africa. One man in the European Commission is working to channel those feelings toward constructive engagement. As the EC’s Coordinator for Africa-China Relations, Uwe Wissenbach shapes policy as the EU adjusts to Asia’s growing influence in Africa. Wissenbach studied at the Mainz and Lille Univesities, the London School of Economics and Beijing Foreign Studies University. He spent five years in the EC delegation to Beijing (1999-2004). He then managed a project in Panam, Tibet, which attempted to show Beijing the value of local participation in development as an alternative to typical large-scale works led from the distant capital. Returning to Brussels, Wissenbach joined its Social Development Unit before moving to his present role in the Directorate-General for Development. In ‘The EU, Africa and China: Towards Trilateral Dialogue and Cooperation’, published by the EC in October 2008, Wissenbach argues for a multilateralist approach to Africa, emphasising the common interest in a peaceful and stable Africa, and credits China for its engagement through high-level visits, such as that of President Hu Jintao in 2007. ‘Our interest is to have the African partnership with the EU [and] the EU’s partnership with China strengthened and not weakened by discussions about what China does in Africa,’ he said at the Brussels Development Briefing in July.
    Uwe Wissenbach

    Wu Bangguo
    Second in command of China’s Communist Party Wu Bangguo has just completed a tour of Algeria, Gabon, Ethiopia, Madagascar and Seychelles from 3-14 November 2008. He visited the allies in rough order from oldest to newest. With Algerian President Abdelaziz Bouteflika, Wu talked up infrastructure and energy. He proposed a trade and economic zone. Then he spent two days in Gabon discussing minerals and power with President Omar Bongo Ondimba. Ethiopian Premier Meles Zenawi welcomed Wu’s call for further agricultural and anti-poverty programmes. Wu proposed hydropower works and an industrial zone for Chinese companies. He met Jean Ping, the Gabonese Chairman of the African Union Commission, and the two men attended the opening of the AU’s new Chinese-financed US$150 million conference and office complex. In Madagascar, Wu emphasised China’s plan to use local labour for several energy and agriculture projects discussed with President Marc Ravalomanana. Finally, in Seychelles, Wu assured President James Michel that the global credit crisis would not affect China’s plans to increase funding. Despite the financial panic, Wu was able to reiterate Beijing’s commitment to its pledges at the 2006 Forum on China-Africa Cooperation. Expectations are high for the next FOCAC summit, to be held in Egypt in 2009, and Wu was an honoured guest. There were few signs of the nervousness that dogged President Hu Jintao’s visit last year during the unrest in Zambia’s Copperbelt over Chinese mining companies’ treatment of local workers. From Anhui province, Wu is an engineer who ascended the party ranks via its Shanghai branch. Rising to the CCP Central Committee alongside Hu in 2003, Wu’s was then appointed Chairman of the National People’s Congress Standing Committee. Some dismiss the NPC as a rubber-stamp legislative body; but, its Standing Committee plays a key role in promulgating new laws. Following China’s accession to the World Trade Organisation in 2001, there has been a plethora of new commercial rules and statutes.
    Wu Bangguo

    Lou Jiwei
    Lou Jiwei was born in Zhejiang province in 1950 and came of age during the Cultural Revolution. With few outlets for a bright but directionless young man, he travelled the country by train for some time with friends before deciding to join the navy, where he served from 1968 to 1973. On leaving the service, he moved to Beijing, joined the Communist Party and worked in the offi ce of Capital Iron and Steel. When the Qinghua University reopened after the Cultural Revolution, Lou enrolled in its computer science department. After graduation, he studied econometrics at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, which led to work in the State Council in 1985. As director of an economic reform commission in Shanghai in 1988, he entered the orbit of China’s future president, Jiang Zemin, then Shanghai Party Secretary, and the Mayor of Shanghai, Zhu Rongji (AAC Vol 1 No 1), who would become Jiang’s premier. Lou spent three years in Guizhou province as Vice-Governor, before returning to Beijing as Vice-Minister of Finance. In October 2007, Lou offi cially became Chairman of the China Investment Corporation (CIC), which is funded with US$200 billion of China’s foreign exchange reserves. The State Council has given him no limits on where he can invest it, and the world thrills and trembles at this latest instrument of Chinese power. Lou is the CIC’s man in Beijing; travelling duties will fall to the fund’s General Manager, Gao Xiqing, a United States-trained lawyer with Wall Street experience. September 2009: World Bank President Robert Zoellick was in Beijng talking to Chinese officials about cooperation with the Chinese sovereign-wealth fund China Investment Corporation led by Lou Jiwei on some $4 billion of investment in Africa.
    Lou Jiwei

    Katsuya Okada

    Katsuya Okada

    Syed Mokhtar Al-Bukhary
    Despite ranking 605th on the Forbes Rich List last year, Syed Mokhtar Al-Bukhary keeps a low profile. In August, he stepped into the limelight when he was named as part of an Indian-Malaysian consortium that has bid for a 46% stake in Zain, the second largest communication firm in the Gulf and owner of Celtel with operations in 16 African countries. Valued at US$13.7 billion, this deal would mark the largest foreign takeover of a Middle Eastern company and would prevent Zain's planned sell-off of its African assets. The terms of the deal, though, are still unclear. Born in Alor Setar in 1951, Al-Bukhary, who left school to help with the family business, is now worth an estimated $2 bn. (although this may have been affected adversely by the financial crisis). His first job was as a market seller of vegetables and roti canai (Malaysian flatbread) and he took over his father's meat selling business at the age of 19 - and expanded. After that he took out a loan to buy two lorries and started up a haulage company, Syarikat Pengangkutan Sentosa. Later he moved into rice and sugar trading, then clothing, manufacturing and real estate. Al-Bukhary's fortune grew alongside his friendship with Mahathir Mohamed, Malaysia's Prime Minister in 1981-2003, and his business interests today reflect both his early diversity and his political connections. He owns 51% of the Malaysia Mining Corporation and through MMC he also controls 51% of Malakoff, which produces 25% of Malaysia's energy. MMC also controls Shapadu and owns 41.8% of Gas Malaysia, the country's biggest gas provider. One of Malaysia's richest men, Al-Bukhary is also a philanthropist with charities working on health and human security in Asia and Africa.
    Syed Mokhtar Al-Bukhary

    Ahmed Aboul Gheit
    Born in 1942 in Cairo Mr.Ahmed Aboul Gheit, studied commerce at Ain Shams University, earning a bachelor degree in 1964. He joined the Ministry of Foreign Affaires the following year. Mr. Gheit made all his carrer in the egyptian diplomacy since 1965. In 1977-1979 has been First Secretary for the Minister's Cabinet. 1987-1989 has been Deputy Permanent Representative of Egypt to the UN. From 1992 to 1996 he was serving as Egypt's Ambassador to Italy, Macedonia, San Marino and representative to Food and Agricolture Organization in Rome. He was appointed Minister of Foreign Affairs in 2004 and served until March 2011.
    Ahmed Aboul Gheit

    H.E. Xu Jinghu
    Xu Jinghu born in 1954 in Jiangsu province. in 1979 she joined the Chinese Foreign Affairs Ministry's Department for Africa. She has held different positions in her career, though all connected with the African foreign policy of the People's Republic of China. Her first overseas assignment was as Third Secretary to the Chinese embassy in Gabon between 1985 and 1990. She was apponted Ambassador to Morocco in 2009.
    H.E. Xu Jinghu

    RENÉ N’GUETTIA KOUASSI
    Kouassi earned his doctorate at the Université de Clermont-Ferrand, France, writing his thesis on development finance flows. He became an economic analyst at the Organisation of African Unity in the 1990s and participated in the planning of Japan's development forum TICAD II in 1998, a model used by China for its African summits. He later headed the OAU's Research and Development division before becoming director of the AU's Economic Affairs Division.
    RENÉ N’GUETTIA KOUASSI

    Rajiv Sawhney
    Mr. Sawhney earned a bachelor's degree in economics from the Government College for Men in Chandigarh in 1979 and a degree from the Indian Institute of Management in 1981 before beginning his career as a telecom executive. He spent five years as Executive Director of Hutchison Essar (1999-2004) before becoming CEO of Hutchison CAT Wireless in Thailand in 2004. He was appointed CEO of Essar Comunication.
    Rajiv Sawhney

    Mike Adenuga
    Education: Ibadan Grammar School, Oyo State; Northwestern State University, Oklahoma; Pace University, New York. Career: Owner, Equitorial Trust Bank; Owner, Consolidated Oil; Owner, Globacom; Owner, Conoil. Commentary: Mike Adenuga is CEO and principal owner of Globacom, Nigeria’s second biggest telecommunications company, Conoil Plc, one of Nigeria's biggest oil companies, and Equitorial Trust Bank. His net worth is estimated at US$6 billion.
    Mike Adenuga

    Godswill Akpabio
    Education: Methodist Primary School, Ukana; Federal Government College, Port Harcourt; BA, Law, University of Calabar; Nigerian Law School. Career: Teacher, Afaha Secondary School, Essien Udin, 1982; Associate Partner, Paul Usoro and Co, Lagos; Director, Corporate Affairs/Legal Services, 1995-02; Commissioner for Petroleum and Natural Resources, 2002-03; Ministry of Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, 2003-06; Governor, Akwa Ibom State, 2007 to date. Commentary: Akpabio was a Commissioner in his predecessor Adamu Attah's government and beat 57 other candidates to win the 2007 gubernatorial race. The two have since been locked in a public war of words.
    Godswill Akpabio

    Mu'azu Aliyu
    Education: Central Primary School, Kuta; Sultan Primary School, Sokoto, 1963-69; College of Arts and Arabic Studies, Sokoto, 1969-74; College of Education, Sokoto, 1977; Bayero University, Kano, 1983; University of Pittsburgh, 1985-89. Career: Staff, Niger State Ministry of Education, 1978; part-time Graduate Assistant and Research Assistant/Consultant, University of Pittsburgh, 1986-89; Acting Chief Political Affairs Officer, 1990; Acting Director-General, Cabinet Secretariat, OSFG, 1994-1995; Director/Special Assistant to the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, 1995-96; Director (Maritime Services) Ministry of Transportation, 1996-99; Governor, Niger State, 2007 to date. Commentary: The Governor of Niger State has had a troubled relationship with the most visible politician in his state, former General Ibrahim Babangida. The General selected Aliyu as a People's Democratic Party (PDP) candidate, sending a night-time emissary to to notify him two weeks before the primaries. Since then he has been seeking to distance himself from the General, presumably to launch a bid for the presidency himself.
    Mu'azu Aliyu

    Ladi Balogun
    Education: University of East Anglia, 1993; MBA, Harvard Business School, 1998. Career: Senior Manager/Team Leader, Investment Banking Division, FCMB Capital Markets Limited, 1995; Executive Director, Investment Banking Division, FCMB, 1997; Executive Director, Institutional Banking Group, 1997. Commentary: A scion of one of Nigeria’s leading business dynasties, Ladi Balogun is Managing Director and Chief Executive of FCMB and is the son of its founder, Otunba Subomi Balogun, a titan in Nigerian banking and business. Ladi joined the family bank in 1995 having worked as an investment banker at Morgan Grenfell in London and Citibank in New York. He left on study leave in 1998 and returned in 2000 with an MBA from Harvard. FCMB was one of the few family owned banks to survive the consolidation exercise of 2004. His leadership has seen it emerge as one of Nigeria’s most promising banks.
    Ladi Balogun

    Owelle Chikelu
    Education: Economics, University of Ghana; London School of Economics and Political Science, United Kingdom. Commentary: Chikelu is Chairman of the Board of Guaranty Trust Bank. His first position after leaving school in 1948 was at the Bank of British West Africa. He entered public service in 1963. During Nigeria’s civil war he worked at the Biafran Ministry of Economic Development, the Biafran Economic Planning Commission and the West Niger Affairs Administration. After the war he rejoined the Nigerian civil service. Since then he has served as Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Economic Development, the Ministry of Mines and Power and the Ministry of Petroleum Resources; and as Director General of the Ministry of Petroleum Resources. In 1991, he was appointed Chairman of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation. In 1992, he was named Honorable Minister of Establishments and Management Services. In 1993, he became Chairman of the National Salaries & Wages Commission. He holds the traditional title of Owelle of Ichida, in Anambra State.
    Owelle Chikelu

    Sullivan Chime
    Education: College of Immaculate Conception, Enugu, 1971-78; LLB, University of Nigeria, 1980; Bar Studies, Nigerian Law School, Lagos, 1980-81. Career: Ran a private legal practice, Enugu, 1981-98; Secretary of the Nigeria Bar Association, 1992-94; Attorney General and Commissioner of Justice, Enugu State, 2001; Governor of Enugu State, 2007 to date.
    Sullivan Chime

    General Abdulsalami Abubakar
    Education: Native Authority Primary School, 1950-56; Provincial Secondary School, Bida, 1957-62; Technical Institute, Kaduna, 1963; military training, United States, 1975-77 and 1981-82. Career: Commander, Third Mechanised Brigade, Nigerian Army, Kano; promoted to Colonel, 1984; 11th President of Nigeria, 1998-99. Commentary: Head of State after Sani Abacha's death, Abubakar handed over to elected President Olusegun Obasanjo on 29 May 1999. Previously regarded as a relatively ascetic Muslim and professional officer, Abubakar faced allegations of grand corruption and incompetence before the Oputa Panel in 2001.
    General Abdulsalami Abubakar

    Femi Otedola
    Married with 4 children Career: Set up Centreforce Limited, 1994; incorporated Zenon Petroleum and Gas Limited, 1999; incorporated Seaforce Shipping Company Limited, 2001; member of the Governing Council of the Nigerian Investment Promotion Council, 2004; Director, Transnational Corporation of Nigeria Plc, 2005. Commentary: In March 2009, with a net worth of US$1.2 billion, Otedola became the second Nigerian to make Forbes annual list of world billionaires. The son of a former Lagos State governor, Otedola began importing diesel in 1999 through his company, Zenon. In 2008, he became company CEO using a majority stake in publicly traded African Petroleum (AP). A feud between Otedola and fellow billionaire Aliko Dangote, an earlier entrant on the Forbes list, had Otedola accusing his former friend of manipulating a fall in AP’s share prices. Dangote in turn sued Otedola for 2 billion naira, alleging libel.
    Femi Otedola

    Olagunsoye Oyinlola
    Education: St Michael’s Primary School, Okuku, 1963; Odo-Otin Grammar School, Okuku, 1963-68; Diploma, International Relations, Obafemi Awolowo University, 1979; MSc Defence Studies, University of Madras, India, 1988; Strategic Studies, University of Ibadan, 1999; Law, University of Buckingham, United Kingdom, 2003. Career: Private soldier, Nigerian Army, 1969; Officer, Armoured Corps, Nigerian Army, 1971; Military Advisor, Lagos State, 1993-96; Governor, Osun State, 2003-10.
    Olagunsoye Oyinlola

    Abba Ruma
    Commentary: Ruma was a key member of the K34 group, a group formed in Katsina with Musa Yaradua while he was governor there. The group contributed money and strategy to his campaigns and were rewarded with choice appointments and contracts. Others included Tanimu Yakubu and Ibrahim Sherma. Most of them had made money while Buhari was in charge of the Petroleum Trust Fund. Ruma was convinced to join the group irom the opposition ANPP in 2003 and he was made a Minister 4 years later after Yar Adua became president. In Octrober 2009 along with the Ministers of Health and the Environment, he was called in by the Senate to explain what happened to N26billion earmarked to construct a dam.
    Abba Ruma

    Namadi Sambo
    Education: Government Secondary School (now Alhuda-Huda College), 1967-71; BSc and MSc, Architecture, Ahmadu Bello University, 1973-78. Career: Bauchi State Urban Development Board, 1979; Kaduna State Commissioner of Agriculture, 1986; Commissioner for Works, Transport and Housing, 1988; Governor, Kaduna State, 2007-10; Vice President of Nigeria, 2010 to date.. Commentary: Sambo became Kaduna State Governor in 2007, after a run off with Senator Isaiah Balat, the favorite to win the election and one of the five founders of the People's Democratic Party (PDP) in Kaduna. Sambo had the support of Ahmed Mohammed Makarfi, the previous Kaduna State Governor, who, despite a close political relationship with Balat, preferred Sambo, a fellow Muslim. Sambo had not even been a PDP member six months earlier, and after his victory had to be prompted to remember the party slogan. Many were resentful of Sambo's election (especially in Balat’s Southern Kaduna) and felt he was Makarfi's stooge and a beneficiary of an act of religious bigotry.
    Namadi Sambo

    Hanna Tetteh
    Education: O Levels and A Levels, Wesley Girls High School, Cape Coast, Ghana, 1978-85; LLB Degree, University of Ghana, 1986-89; BL Degree, Ghana Law School, 1989-92. Career: Legal Officer, International Federation of Women Lawyers, 1992-93; Legal Officer, Ansa-Asare & Co, Hencil Chambers, Accra, 1993-94; Legal Officer, Commission on Human Rights & Administrative Justice (CHRAJ), 1995; Legal Advisor, Ghana Agro Food Company Ltd, 1995-97; Human Resource & Legal Services Manager, Ghana Agro Food Company Ltd, 1998-99; Deputy General Manager and General Manager, Administration & Legal, Ghana Agro Food Company Ltd, 2005-09; Minister of Trade and Industry, 2009 to date.
    Hanna Tetteh

    David Ampofo
    Education: BA, Politics and Philosophy, Escuela Nico Lopez, Cuba; MA, Journalism, University of Wales. Career: Presidential correspondent, Ghana Television, 1988-92; South Africa and West Africa correspondent, Carte Blanche, DSTV; Campaign Strategist and Media Advisor, Convention People's Party (CPP), 2008 Presidential Elections; CEO, Host, and Executive Producer, Time with David, Channel Two Communications, 1992 to date.
    David Ampofo

    Jacob Ajekigbe
    Education: University of Ibadan, 1975; Masters, Business Accounting, University of Lagos, 1990. Career: Agricultural Credit Officer, First Bank, 1977; Senior Manager, First Bank, 1986; Principal Manager, First Bank, 1993; Assistant General Manager, First Bank, London, United Kingdom, 1996; Deputy General Manager, Corporate Banking, First Bank, 2000; Executive Director, Retail and Consumer Banking, First Bank, 2000; Managing Director and CEO, First Bank, 2002-09. Commentary: As a former Managing Director of First Bank, Nigeria's oldest and largest bank, Ajekigbe is well regarded in the business community. He is also one of the founders of Transcorp, a Nigerian-owned 'mega-corporation' that promotes the country's economic interests at home and abroad. Transcorp was closely modeled on South Korea's giant Chaebol conglomerates, which are among the biggest in the world.
    Jacob Ajekigbe

    David William Donald Cameron
    Education: Heatherdown Preparatory School, Winkfield, Berkshire, UK. Eton College School, Berkshire, UK. Cameron achieved 12 O-levels and 3 A-levels in History of Art, History and Politics & Economics. Brasenose College, University of Oxford, UK. Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy, Politics and Economics (PPE). Career: Conservative Research Department 1988-1993. Special Advisor to the Chancellor of the Exchequer, Norman Lamont 1992-1993. Special Advisor to the Home Secretary, Michael Howard 1993-1994. Director of Corporate Affairs, Carlton Communications 1994-2001. Member of Parliament for Witney, Oxfordshire, since 2001. Shadow Secretary of State for Education 2003-2005. Leader of the Opposition 2005-2010. Prime Minister of the United Kingdom since May 2010.
    David William Donald Cameron

    Nicholas William Peter Clegg ("Nick")
    Education: Caldicott School, Buckinghamshire, UK. Westminster School, London, UK. Robinson College, Cambridge University, UK. University of Minnesota, USA. College of Europe, Belgium. Career: Financial Times journalist and winner of the Financial Times' David Thomas prize 1993-1994. Worked for the European Commission, managing aid programs to the former Soviet Union 1994-1999. Liberal Democrat Member of the European Parliament (MEP) 1999-2004. Lobbyist for political lobbying firm GPlus and part-time lecturer in Politics at the University of Sheffield 2004-2005. MP for Sheffield Hallam 2005- . Leader of the Liberal Democrats 2007- .Deputy Prime Minister 2010- .
    Nicholas William Peter Clegg ("Nick")

    Wang Min

    Wang Min

    Andrew Mitchell

    Andrew Mitchell

    Ravi Ruia

    Ravi Ruia

    Manuel Vicente

    Manuel Vicente

    Li Changchun

    Li Changchun

    Sanjay Kirloskar

    Sanjay Kirloskar

    Madické Niang

    Madické Niang

    Manmohan Singh

    Manmohan Singh

    Kim Sung-hwan

    Kim Sung-hwan

    Tarah Shaanika

    Tarah Shaanika

    Wang Tianpu

    Wang Tianpu

    Jen-Chih Huang ('Robert' )

    Jen-Chih Huang ('Robert' )

    Franky Oesman Widjaja

    Franky Oesman Widjaja

    Salva Kiir Mayardit

    Salva Kiir Mayardit

    Liu Zhiming

    Liu Zhiming

    Mthuli Ncube

    Mthuli Ncube

    Takeaki Matsumoto

    Takeaki Matsumoto

    Christina Tan

    Christina Tan

    Chung Joon-yang

    Chung Joon-yang

    Makiko Kikuta

    Makiko Kikuta

    Park Young-june

    Park Young-june

    Sriprakash Jaiswal

    Sriprakash Jaiswal

    Xi Jinping

    Xi Jinping

    Wu Den-yih

    Wu Den-yih

    Ali Ben Bongo Ondimba

    Ali Ben Bongo Ondimba

    Kim Jae-shin

    Kim Jae-shin

    Vital Kamerhe

    Vital Kamerhe

    Ratan Naval Tata

    Ratan Naval Tata

    Seiji Maehara

    Seiji Maehara

    Gong Jianzhong

    Gong Jianzhong

    Felix Mutati

    Felix Mutati

    Chun Seung-hun

    Chun Seung-hun

    Osamu Fujimura

    Osamu Fujimura

    Liu Yuhe

    Liu Yuhe

    Lee Yi Shyan

    Lee Yi Shyan

    Mswati III

    Mswati III

    Liu Zhenmin

    Liu Zhenmin

    Vasile Frank Timis (Frank)

    Vasile Frank Timis (Frank)

    Manoj Kohli

    Manoj Kohli

    Wang Jin-pyng

    Wang Jin-pyng

    Hamidon Ali

    Hamidon Ali

    Wang Gang

    Wang Gang

    Sellapan Ramanathan

    Sellapan Ramanathan

    Nkosinathi Mthethwa

    Nkosinathi Mthethwa

    Hillary Rodham Clinton

    Hillary Rodham Clinton

    Sumio Kusaka

    Sumio Kusaka

    Chen Bingde

    Chen Bingde

    Xia Huang

    Xia Huang

    S.M. Krishna

    S.M. Krishna

    Nguyen Minh Triet

    Nguyen Minh Triet

    Ajai Chowdhry

    Ajai Chowdhry

    Mike Hung

    Mike Hung

    Jia Qinglin

    Jia Qinglin

    Lee Myung-bak

    Lee Myung-bak

    Stephen Shu-hung Shen

    Stephen Shu-hung Shen

    Roger Busima Kataala

    Roger Busima Kataala

    Naruhito

    Naruhito

    Donald Kaberuka

    Donald Kaberuka

    Anil Agarwal

    Anil Agarwal

    Kim Hyong-o

    Kim Hyong-o

    Evariste Boshab

    Evariste Boshab

    Yin Zhuo

    Yin Zhuo

    Mohammad Hamid Ansari

    Mohammad Hamid Ansari

    Shin Kak-soo

    Shin Kak-soo

    Li Qiangmin

    Li Qiangmin

    Kasit Piromya

    Kasit Piromya

    Song Sang-hyun

    Song Sang-hyun

    Stanley Ho

    Stanley Ho

    René N'guettia Kouassi

    René N'guettia Kouassi

    Zhao Jianping

    Zhao Jianping

    Chin-tien Yang (Timothy)

    Chin-tien Yang (Timothy)

    Phung Dinh Thuc

    Phung Dinh Thuc

    Jiang Jiemin

    Jiang Jiemin

    Srinath Narasimhan

    Srinath Narasimhan

    Anand Sharma

    Anand Sharma

    Chen Yuan

    Chen Yuan

    Justin Yifu Lin

    Justin Yifu Lin

    Lee Won-gul

    Lee Won-gul

    Tan Dung Nguyen

    Tan Dung Nguyen

    Suppiah Dhanabalan

    Suppiah Dhanabalan

    Mahmoud Mohieldin

    Mahmoud Mohieldin

    Shashi Tharoor

    Shashi Tharoor

    Hassan Wirajuda

    Hassan Wirajuda

    Purnomo Yusgiantoro

    Purnomo Yusgiantoro

    Murli Deora

    Murli Deora

    Lieutenant General Nhial Deng Nhial
    August 2011 - Minister of Foreign Affairs of the newly independent Republic of South Sudan December 2008 - July 2011: South Sudanese Minister of SPLA and Veteral Affairs
    Lieutenant General Nhial Deng Nhial

    Shri B. Prasada Rao

    Shri B. Prasada Rao

    Dr Margaret Chan
    1978, joined Hong Kong Department of Health. 1994, Director, Hong Kong Department of Health. 2003, Director, Department for Protection of the Human Environment, WHO. June 2005, Director, Communicable Diseases Surveillance and Response and Representative of the Director-General for Pandemic Influenza. September 2005, Assistant Director-General for Communicable Diseases. November 2007, Director-General, WHO.
    Dr Margaret Chan

    Doan Xuan Hung
    10 July 2008 – present: Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Feb 2008 – Jul 2008: Assistant Minister of Foreign Affairs Aug 2007 – Feb 2008: Director General of Economics Department, Ministry of Foreign Affairs Jul 2003 – Dec 2004: Director General of Protocol Department, Ministry of Foreign Affairs Dec 2002 – Jul 2003: Acting Director General of the Protocol Department, Ministry of Foreign Affairs Feb 2001 – Dec 2002: Deputy Director General of Americas Department, Ministry of Foreign Affairs Mar 1997 – Jan 2001: Minister Counselor, Embassy of Vietnam in Washington DC, USA Nov 1994 – Feb 1997: Deputy Director General, Deputy Chief of MOFA Cabinet, Minister’s Secretary Sep 1993 – Nov 1994: Officer, MOFA Cabinet, Minister’s Secretary Nov 1989 – May 1992: Officer, Soviet Union Department, Ministry of Foreign Affairs Nov 1985 - Nov 1989: Third Secretary, Embassy of Vietnam in the Soviet Union Nov 1984 – Nov 1985: Officer, Soviet Union Department, Ministry of Foreign Affairs Sep 1980 – Oct 1984: Officer, Embassy of Vietnam in the Soviet Union
    Doan Xuan Hung

    Patience Jonathan
    Born in Port Harcourt, First Lady Patience Jonathan took a Psychology and Biology degree at the University of Port Harcourt and then started a career as a civil servant. She later married Goodluck Jonathan who made his political debut as Deputy Governor of Bayelsa state, became Governor, then Vice-President and now President of Nigeria. Well known for her active participation in her husband’s political campaigns, the First Lady is involved with many charities in Nigeria that work mainly with women and children. She is also the founder of several non-governmental organisations such as the A.Aruera Reachout Foundation, which focuses on educating middle-aged women. Patience Jonathan has won several accolades, in particular the 2008 Beyond Tears International Humanitarian Award New York for her work with charities. Despite her reputation for philanthropy, Jonathan has been subject to several investigations by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission related to the money-laundering of several millions of dollars, although she firmly denies all allegations and says she was framed. In Nigeria, Jonathan is also known for her entertaining public speeches which, although her first language is Igbo, she makes in English. Her distinctive grammatical errors in her elaborate speeches are sometimes mocked by political commentators. One of her most famous lines is, ‘My fellow widows...my heart feels sorry for these children who have become widows by losing their parents for one reason or another.’ Some more famous gaffes can be found here.
    Patience Jonathan

    Pa’gan Amum Okiech

    Pa’gan Amum Okiech

    Cyrus P Mistry
    Cyrus Mistry holds bachelor’s degrees in commerce from Mumbai University and civil engineering from Imperial College, London, and a master’s in management from London Business School.
    Cyrus P Mistry

    Richard Sezibera

    Richard Sezibera

    Fatou Bensouda

    Fatou Bensouda

    Rugare Eleck Ngidi Gumbo
    Spokesman, Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front and Politburo member; Minister of Agriculture, 2007-09; Minister of Economic Development, 2005-07. Rugare Gumbo has a BA in Political Science MA, MED. Detained in Zambia, March 1975. Released October 1976.
    Rugare Eleck Ngidi Gumbo

    Webster Kotiwani Shamu

    Webster Kotiwani Shamu

    Jonathan Nathaniel Moyo
    Minister of Information, 2013; Currently ZANU-PF- Politburo Member,Tsholotsho, Zimbabwe; Member of the House of Assembly, 2005-08; Minister of Information, 2000-05.
    Jonathan Nathaniel Moyo

    Cyril Ramaphosa
    Cyril Ramaphosa, businessman, politician, former political activist and trade union leader was elected Deputy President of the African National Congress (ANC) in December 2012. Ramaphosa grew up in Soweto. In 1971 he matriculated at the Mphaphuli High School in Sibasa, Venda. He obtained his B. Proc. degree from the University of South Africa in 1981.
    Cyril Ramaphosa

    Advocate Thuli Nomkhosi Madonsela (Thulisile)
    Thulisile (Thuli) Madonsela was appointed as South Africa's third Public Protector in October 2009. A human rights and constitutional lawyer, equality expert and policy specialist with over two decades of post legal qualification experience, Madonsela holds a BA Law (UNISWA) and an LLB (Wits).
    Advocate Thuli Nomkhosi Madonsela (Thulisile)

    Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela (Madiba)

    Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela (Madiba)

    Chief Mangosuthu Gatsha Buthelezi
    Born into the Zulu Royal family in 1928, Mangosuthu Buthelezi founded the Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) in 1975.
    Chief Mangosuthu Gatsha Buthelezi

    Bheki Cele
    Former National Commissioner of the South African Police Service, Bheki Cele, was suspended in October 2011 over corruption allegations.
    Bheki Cele

    Salmin Amour
    President of Zanzibar, 25 October 1990-8 November 2000.
    Salmin Amour

    Seif Shariff Hamad

    Seif Shariff Hamad

    Benjamin William Mkapa

    Benjamin William Mkapa

    Julius Kambarage Nyerere (Mwalimu)
    Julius Kambarage Nyerere was the first President of Tanzania and previously Tanganyika, from the country's founding in 1961 until his retirement in 1985.
    Julius Kambarage Nyerere (Mwalimu)

    Billy Rautenbach (Muller Conrad Rautenbach)

    Billy Rautenbach (Muller Conrad Rautenbach)

    Lieutenant General (Retired) Vitalis Zvinavashe

    Lieutenant General (Retired) Vitalis Zvinavashe

    Beny Steinmetz

    Beny Steinmetz

    Ibrahim Boubacar Keïta (IBK)
    2013: President of Mali; 2002-2007: President of the National Assembly; 2001: Founded the Rassemblement pour le Mali (RPM) and has led the party since; 1994-2000, Prime Minister.
    Ibrahim Boubacar Keïta (IBK)

    Oumar Tatam Ly

    Oumar Tatam Ly

    Macky Sall
    President of Senegal since April 2012
    Macky Sall

    Walter Chidhakwa
    Walter Chidhakwa, appointed Minister of Mines and Mining Development in 2013, is also the Zvimba South Member of the National Assembly. He is Robert Mugabe’s nephew and a close confidante of Grace Mugabe.
    Walter Chidhakwa

    Raymond Tshibanda (Raymond Tshibanda N'tungamulongo)

    Raymond Tshibanda (Raymond Tshibanda N'tungamulongo)

    Raymond Zéphirin Mboulou

    Raymond Zéphirin Mboulou

    Lambert Mende (Lambert Mende Omalanga)

    Lambert Mende (Lambert Mende Omalanga)

    Julius Sello Malema
    Former president of the African National Congress Youth League.
    Julius Sello Malema

    Baleka Mbete

    Baleka Mbete

    Gwede Mantashe

    Gwede Mantashe

    Mmusi Maimane

    Mmusi Maimane

    Kgalema Petrus Motlanthe

    Kgalema Petrus Motlanthe

    Zwelinzima Vavi

    Zwelinzima Vavi

    Paul Biya (Paul Barthélemy Biya'a bi Mvondo)

    Paul Biya (Paul Barthélemy Biya'a bi Mvondo)

    Abubakar Shekau

    Abubakar Shekau

    Armando Emílio Guebuza

    Armando Emílio Guebuza

    Alberto Vaquina

    Alberto Vaquina

    Zine El Abidine Ben Ali

    Zine El Abidine Ben Ali

    Mohamed Brahmi

    Mohamed Brahmi

    Peter Mutharika

    Peter Mutharika

    Bingu wa Mutharika

    Bingu wa Mutharika

    Joyce Hilda Banda

    Joyce Hilda Banda

    Usama bin Mohammed bin Awad bin Laden (Osama)

    Usama bin Mohammed bin Awad bin Laden (Osama)

    Filipe Jacinto Nyusi

    Filipe Jacinto Nyusi

    Alberto Chipande

    Alberto Chipande

    Afonso Marceta Macacho Dhlakama

    Afonso Marceta Macacho Dhlakama

    Gideon Gono

    Gideon Gono

    Saviour Kasukuwere

    Saviour Kasukuwere

    Abdoulaye Wade

    Abdoulaye Wade

    Amadou Ali

    Amadou Ali

    Ralph Kasambara

    Ralph Kasambara

    Pika Manondo

    Pika Manondo

    Paul Mphwiyo

    Paul Mphwiyo

    Brown Mpinganjira

    Brown Mpinganjira

    Hophmally Makande

    Hophmally Makande

    Henry Phoya

    Henry Phoya

    Dr Siyabonga Cyprian Cwele
    Minister of Telecommunications and Postal Services
    Dr Siyabonga Cyprian Cwele

    Sheryl Cwele

    Sheryl Cwele

    President Alpha Condé
    President of Guinea since December 2010
    President Alpha Condé

    Lansana Conté Conté
    Lansana Conté was President of Guinea from 3 April 1984 until his death in December 2008.
    Lansana Conté Conté

    Field Marshal Abdel Fatah Khalil el Sisi
    Field Marshal Abdel Fatah Saeed Hussein Khalil el Sisi, Egypt's sixth President, has been in office since June 2014. He is the former head of Egypt's armed forces.
    Field Marshal Abdel Fatah Khalil el Sisi

    Rose Kabuye (Kanyange)

    Rose Kabuye (Kanyange)

    Yoweri Kaguta Museveni
    Yoweri Kaguta Museveni has been President of Uganda since 29 January 1986.
    Yoweri Kaguta Museveni

    Amama Mbabazi (Patrick Amama)

    Amama Mbabazi (Patrick Amama)

    Lieutenant General Ian Khama (Seretse Khama Ian Khama)
    Lieutenant General Seretse Khama Ian Khama has been President of Botswana since 1 April 2008.
    Lieutenant General Ian Khama (Seretse Khama Ian Khama)

    Farai Rwodzi

    Farai Rwodzi

    Wynter Kabimba
    Zambian lawyer Wynter Kabimba is a former Minister of Justice and Secretary General of the Patriotic Front, Zambia.
    Wynter Kabimba

    Wynter Kabimba
    Zambian lawyer Wynter Kabimba is a former Minister of Justice and Secretary General of the Patriotic Front, Zambia.
    Wynter Kabimba

    Michael Chilufya Sata

    Michael Chilufya Sata

    Rupiah Bwezani Banda

    Rupiah Bwezani Banda

    Dr Guy Scott

    Dr Guy Scott

    General Julius Waweru Karangi

    General Julius Waweru Karangi

    Laurent Fabius
    Laurent Fabius has been Foreign Minister since 16 May 2012. He was Prime Minister of France from 17 July 1984-20 March 1986.
    Laurent Fabius

    Graça Machel
    Graça Machel is the widow of former South African president Nelson Mandela and of former Mozambican president Samora Machel. She is the only person in the world to have been first lady of two countries.
    Graça Machel

    Riaz Mo Shaik

    Riaz Mo Shaik