Ex-Liberian president joins SA’s liberal-leaning Brenthurst Foundation board


By Staff Reporter

Former Liberian president and Nobel laureate Eileen Johnson Sirleaf has joined her Nigerian peer, Olusegun Obasanjo, on the advisory board of the South Africa’s conservative politics-inclined Brenthurst Foundation.

And Brenthurst Foundation, whose board chairman is president Obasanjo, says it is preparing itself for Africa’s demographic where more than 80 per cent of the continent’s growth will be in urban areas.

In its June 2018 News and Highlight e-newsletter, Brenthurst Foundation head, Greg Mills, said it was a pleasure that president Johnson Sirleaf had joined the team.

On her appointment, president Johnson Sirleaf commented: “I am hugely excited to be joining the Advisory Board of The Brenthurst Foundation and contributing towards the economic development of Africa through the outstanding that the Foundation tirelessly carries out. The Foundation continues to draw upon the best minds and experience from African political and business circles to deliver long-term economic benefits to the continent.”

In welcoming, president Johnson Sirleaf, president Obasanjo credited her for having moved Liberia from conflict to peace through democratic consolidation.

“She brings enormous wisdom and experience in taking her country from conflict to peace and democratic consolidation, and in her role as Africa’s first woman President. I am delighted she will be joining the Foundation.”

The Brenthurst Foundation, which has several former presidents and liberal opposition political party leaders as its rank and file, then highlighted its activities during the month of June.

“June started off with a trip to Norway accompanied by our Chairman, former President Olusegun Obasanjo. We embarked on a two-day trip to the Scandinavian country to formally launch our publication ‘Making Africa Work.’ Whilst there, we met with a number of key representatives of the United Nations Development Programme, Norfund and Yara International,” the E-newsletter read. “President Obasanjo also took part in an interview with the Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation NRK Nyheter. This was followed by Dr Greg Mills returning to Cambridge, UK, to continue his work on the Foundation’s next publication, ‘Making Democracy Work’.”

Back in South Africa, it was further highlighted, The Brenthurst Foundation’s research unit has been focused on the Future of African Cities project, which launched at the May 2016 Tswalu Dialogue.

“With case studies in ten different cities, the project looks at how the continent can best prepare for the upcoming demographic transition, where more than 80% of the continent’s growth will be in urban areas. Fieldwork has already been completed in Lagos and Cape Town, and in July the Foundation will be conducting research in Rabat and Salé with the aid of the OCP Policy Centre in Morocco,”  the statement reads. “Finally, The Brenthurst Foundation is pleased to announce that former Liberian President and Nobel laureate, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf,has joined our Advisory Board.”




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