• Thursday, April 18, 2024
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Ndidi Nwuneli becomes CEO of global advocacy group, ONE Campaign

Ndidi Nwuneli

The board of ONE Campaign, a not-for-profit global advocacy organisation has appointed Nigerian-born Ndidi Okonkwo Nwuneli as Chief Executive Officer. The organisation announced Tuesday following an “extensive global search” as it marks its 20th anniversary.

Nwuneli, set to assume office on April 2, 2024, will lead a global team of campaigners, advocates, and experts based in Abuja, Berlin, Brussels, Dakar, Johannesburg, London, New York, Ottawa, Paris, and Washington D.C. in campaigns aimed at supporting African nations in financial support, developing policies, building political structures, and mobilizing activists towards the overarching goal of eradicating extreme poverty and preventable diseases by 2030.

“I am committed to working with ONE’s dynamic team to lead the organisation at this critical time in Africa’s history. This will require that we forge new local and global partnerships, galvanize catalytical and innovative financing to ensure healthy livelihoods for the most vulnerable, drive sustainable and equitable growth in Africa, and ensure transparency and accountability in the deployment of resources at every level.

“ONE’s cofounders, staff, and board have worked tirelessly over the past 20 years, and its mission has never been more important. I am honored to lead the organization in this next chapter of growth and impact,” Nwuneli said after her appointment.

Nwuneli is a Nigerian entrepreneur and an expert on African agriculture and nutrition, philanthropy and social innovation who holds over 25 years of international development experience with involvement in fostering impactful solutions in the global social innovation landscape, with a focus on Africa.

Having founded multiple organisations, and served on the board of others for several years, ONE believes Nwuneli’s leadership experience would be a plus.

“I’m most thrilled to welcome Ndidi Okonkwo Nwuneli to The ONE Campaign. Ndidi is an incredibly accomplished professional, a passionate and successful leader with over 25 years of international development and advocacy experience. Throughout her life and career, Ndidi has been a steadfast advocate for the world’s poor, bringing great passion and expertise to everything she’s done.

“Her powerful communication skills, broad global experience and strong personal network make her a perfect leader for ONE at this pivotal moment. With Ndidi at the helm, I couldn’t be more confident that ONE will be leading the way in innovative new approaches to tackle the complex issues behind extreme poverty today,” said Tom Freston, board Chair of ONE.

ONE, founded in 2004 by Paul David Hewson ‘Bono’, an Irish singer-songwriter and activist, prides on its achievements in mobilizing funding for global causes. The organisation says it has helped secure $72 billion to help more people access healthcare and life-saving tools like vaccines, and brought global activists, leaders, and experts together during COVID-19 to secure $97 billion in pandemic recovery funds.

With ONE, Bono takes credit for helping to enable the US PEPFAR AIDS program, the largest commitment by a nation to address a single disease in history that has saved more than 25 million lives over the past 20 years.

ONE does not stand alone as it receives financial support from philanthropists, foundations, and corporate partners notably Aliko Dangote Foundation, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Bloomberg LP, Coca-Cola, Dr. Mo Ibrahim, Bank of America, and Google.

Bono expects that Nwuneli’s appointment will further strengthen these partnerships and advance ONE’s efforts in lobbying heads of state and legislatures all around the world to help ensure the passage of health and development programs in Africa.

He said, “ONE could not be getting a better present for its 20th birthday than Ndidi Okonkwo Nwuneli taking charge as its next President and CEO. An organization that focuses on Africa should be led by an African, that’s always been our dream, and Ndidi is the right person to take ONE into the future. She’s multilingual in the broadest sense; it’s not just languages she speaks across, but geographies and sectors too.

“She’s an entrepreneur and a policy wonk, an activist and a business leader who knows governments and business need to work together if we’re going to solve the biggest challenges facing our planet. I can’t wait to see what she and ONE’s brilliant policy wonks and political arm twisters are able to accomplish. In a world battling multiple fires, figuratively and literally, we need them now more than ever.”