H.E. President Macky Sall

President of the Republic of Senegal

President Macky Sall was born on December 11, 1961 in Fatick, the town to which he served as Mayor from 2009 to 2012. President Sall was Prime Minister for three years from 2004 to 2007, and also acted as President of the Senegalese National Assembly from 2007 to 2008. Elected fourth President of the Republic of Senegal in March of 2012, he took office on April 2, 2012.

Head of Government

Macky Sall was appointed Prime Minister on April 21, 2004. He held that position until June 19, 2007, thus becoming the longest-servingPrime Minister at that time under the President. Initially little-known, he made his mark from his first keynote speech addressing the leaders of the opposition to introduce his general policy. Mr. Sall then proceeded to work on the implementation of State projects that had been shelved: highways, Dakar’s “Corniche” (coastal line of the Capital), the new airport, etc. Additionally, as Chief of Cabinet he ran the campaign for the President’s reelection in 2007.

President of the National Assembly

On June 20, 2007, President Macky Sall was elected President of the National Assembly with 143 votes cast out of the 146 voting members. However, by attempting to summon Karim Wade, son of the President of Senegal, to the National Assembly to testify in the hearings on the work of the ANOCI (National Agency for the Organization of the Islamic Conference), he opened an unbridgeable divide. The position of Vice President of the PDS was abolished and the term of office of the National Assembly President was reduced from five years to one. He left office in 2008.

President of the Republic

As a candidate of the “Macky 2012” coalition, he campaigned throughout the country under the slogan “the path to true development,” while keeping the lines open with the Opposition Movement of June 23 (M23). Mr. Sall took second place in the first round, with 26.58% of the votes, compared to34.81% for the incumbent President. Before the second round, he rallied all defeated candidates in the Benno Bokk Yakkar coalition (meaning “united for the same hope” in the local language, Wolof) and won the election on March 25 over the incumbent -. The outgoing President called Mr. Sall on the same evening to congratulate him before the results were officially proclaimed by the Constitutional Council (65.80% of the votes, compared to34.20% for the incumbent).

Elected fourth President of the Republic of Senegal, Macky Sall was sworn into office on April 2, 2012 at the King Fahd Palace-Soleil Hotel

True to his promise to reduce government expenses, he removed certain ministerial privileges and abolished 59 commissions and directorates deemed unnecessary including: The National Agency of Senegal's New Harbors; The Directorate of Small Aircraft Construction; The National Agency of the Desert High Authority; The Senegalese Office for Industrial Property and Technology Innovation, which overlapped with the Senegalese Agency for Industrial Property and Technology Innovation. Mr. Sall also announced audits on his predecessor’s management.

Furthermore, Mr. Sall revived the Court for the Repression of Illicit Enrichment and announced the creation of a National Anti-Corruption Office and of a National Commission for Property Restitution and Recovery of Ill-Acquired Gains.

To help reduce the cost of living, the government announced a price reduction on oil, rice, and sugar. Retirement pensions were raised and peasants received emergency subsidies. To save the school year, several national conferences on education were planned. In the field of foreign policy, he focused on rebuilding traditional alliances and allowing Senegal to regain an important diplomatic role in Africa.

Having an outward vision looking to the world, concerned with his country's development, and devoted to ensuring transparent management of the country and public policies, Macky Sall is the symbol of a new generation in Senegal’s politics as well as across the whole continent.

H.E. Dr. Bandar Hajjar

President, Islamic Development Bank

Dr. Hajjar is President of the Islamic Development Bank (IsDB); a multilateral development bank that fosters the economic development and social progress of 57 member countries and Muslim communities. Dr. Hajjar served as Minister of Hajj and the Minister of Culture and Information in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. He has been active in the promotion of human rights and was the founder of the Saudi National Society for Human Rights. He has a PhD in Economics from Loughborough University.

Dr. Hayat Sindi

Senior Advisor to the President, Science, Technology and Innovation, Islamic Development Bank

Dr. Hayat is a leading biotechnologist and a champion of science and technology in the Middle East. In 1995, she became the first woman from the Gulf to obtain a Ph.D. in biotechnology from Cambridge. With a team from Harvard, she co- founded Diagnostics For All to create affordable diagnostic devices for people in impoverished regions. She has launched the i2 Institute for Imagination and Ingenuity to encourage innovation among young scientists, technologists and engineers. Dr. Sindi is a Goodwill Ambassador for Sciences at UNESCO; one of 25 global experts selected by UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon to the UN Scientific Advisory Board; and a member of the Ten Members Group to support the technological facilitation mechanism (TFM) for the SDGs.

Forest Whitaker

Founder and CEO, Whitaker Peace & Development Initiative

Forest Whitaker, artist and social activist, is the founder and CEO of the Whitaker Peace & Development Initiative (WPDI), whose mission is to empower young women and men to become leaders, peacemakers and entrepreneurs in their communities through a unique conflict resolution and peace building program, combined with innovative use of technology and skills building. Mr Whitaker is also the UNESCO Special Envoy for Peace and Reconciliation, and a member of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals Advocacy Group. In 2014, he started collaborating with the Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict, a topic on which he was invited to speak before the Security Council in September of that year. Whitaker is also one of Hollywood’s most accomplished and versatile figures, having received the 2007 Academy Award for Best Actor. Through WPDI, he has developed the Youth Peacemaker Network, a global peacebuilding social network with hubs in South Sudan, South Africa, Uganda, and Mexico. He and WPDI are committed to providing educational tools and economic opportunities to young women and men in regions touched by violence and armed conflict.

Ibrahima Cheikh Diong

Founder & CEO of ACT Afrique

Dr. Patrick Singa

Medical Director, Babyl

Tidjane Deme

General Partner at Partech

Tidjane Deme is General Partner at Partech, co-leading Partech Africa Fund, Partech’s multi-stages tech fund exclusively dedicated to Africa digital markets. He joined in May 2016.

Prior to joining Partech, Tidjane has worked for 15+ years in the tech industry in Africa, as an entrepreneur, a consultant as well as a senior business manager. He worked for 7 years as a senior manager at Google, leading activities in Africa. He started the Google Francophone Africa office in Dakar in 2009, led ecosystem efforts to support developer communities and tech startups across 15+ countries, led Google’s Africa Content Strategy, launching and growing YouTube in 6 markets. He also led business development for Google’s Infrastructure investments in Africa. Prior to Google, Tidjane was a tech entrepreneur who founded and led CommonSys, a consulting and integration company deploying e-gov platforms and enterprise solutions in west Africa. He also cofounded 2 startups, an e-reputation platform in Europe and a SaaS platform for African SMEs. Tidjane started his career working with Cap Gemini in France before joining Cosine Communications, a Silicon Valley startup building network virtualization technology for carriers.

Tidjane grew up in Senegal until age 18, then moved to France to attend Ecole Polytechnique (Msc Physics), did an exchange program at Imperial College London, and attended Ensta-Paritech (Telecom and IT Engineering).

Bukky Shonibare

Founder, Girl Child Africa,
Coordinator of #BringBackOurGirls Movement & #ChurchMeToo Movement

Bukky Shonibare is the Founder of Girl Child Africa, Coordinator of #ChurchMeToo movement, and one of the leaders of the #BringBackOurGirls movement in Nigeria. She is a peace and security expert, and a human rights advocate with focus on women and girls.

Bukky hold a Bachelor of Laws (LL.B) with First Class Honours, B.Sc in Business Administration (First Class), and Master's in Managing Peace and Security in Africa (A). She also hold dual Certificates in Journalism, and Creative Writing from the London School of Journalism; and dual Certificates in Social Sector Management, and Entrepreneurial Management from the Pan Atlantic University, Nigeria.

Bukky has received some awards and recognitions, including being named a 'Nigerian Star' by the US Embassy in Nigeria (May 2019), Glazia’s Person of the Year in the Philanthropy and Advocacy category (January 2018), one of the 100 Most Inspiring Women in Nigeria (March 2018), and one of Quartz Africa’s Innovators at the World Economic Forum (May 2017). Bukky is a 2016 Mandela Washington Fellow, an initiative of the United States Department of States.

Magdalena Nandege

WPDI Youth Ambassador 

I was born in Homiri, a village in Kapoeta State, in Chukudum county, South Sudan.

I graduated in 2019 from the Heath Science Institute of Torit, the capital city of Imotong state, to become a midwife.

It is important to take care of women. Women are the most vulnerable people in the world because they carry life. 

Helping women is the reason why I joined WPDI in the first place.

Being a WPDI Youth Ambassador, I have been given a chance to promote peace in the community. I have learned to use a computer and social media. I have also learned how to run a business. With WPDI, I feel that I belong to a powerful group of people committed to do good things for others.

This has given me a lot of confidence –as a young person and especially as a woman. In my country, many people believe that a women’s only place is at home. I want to prove that this is not true. I do this when I train seasoned officials in peace-building or when I teach the human rights to children. I do this when I lead peace processes among villages in conflict. Recently, I worked with two communities that had been fighting for years in my county, Chukudum.

There had been cattle raids, abductions, beatings and killings. I went to them, spoke to them and get them to speak to each other – translating the teachings of WPDI into words and ideas they could understand. And it worked. They signed a peace agreement that was sanctioned by the State and covered in the media. There was a picture of me in a paper. It pleased me because It was not just me on this picture. It was a message that women can be leaders and have a real role to play to make peace happen.

Tola Odeyemi

Head of Public Policy for West Africa, UBER

Tola Odeyemi is currently the Head of Public Policy for West Africa at Uber. She is responsible for working with policymakers and building relationships for the business’ success in the region. Prior to joining Uber, she simultaneously served as the Executive Secretary of the Lagos State Environmental Trust Fund, a first of its kind central endowment fund established by law in 2017, and also as the Senior Special Assistant to the Lagos state Governor on the Public Utilities Monitoring and Assurance Unit (PUMAU).
A widely renowned technology and policy advocate, Tola is a firm believer in innovation as a catalyst for change and her mission is to create a perfect synergy of technology and policy. She has served on the executive council of Serving With Love Foundation, a non-profit organization devoted to providing social and economic assistance to disadvantaged families and delivering 21st century technology tools to disadvantaged children in Nigeria.
Tola has an undergraduate degree in Electrical Engineering from Morgan State University, Maryland, and a Master’s degree in Systems Engineering from the George Washington University.

Elvis Eze

Malaria and Health Systems Strengthening Expert, Malaria No More UK

Elvis Eze grew up in Nigeria and started out his career as a medical doctor at the Lagos University Teaching Hospital. He has since continued his clinical practice in London most recently working as an emergency medicine doctor within the United Kingdom's National Health Service (NHS).

Elvis also has experience in global health understudying health systems and providing technical support through his work at the Commonwealth Secretariat.

He shares his varied experiences and engages at important platforms to mobilise resources to end Malaria, notably delivering the call to action at the 2018 Malaria summit in London during the Commonwealth Heads of Government meeting.

This year, Elvis launched the voice petition with David Beckham to support the successful replenishment of the Global Fund for HIV, Tuberculosis and Malaria. He was most recently recognised and featured by Bill Gates for his ongoing work on ending malaria.

He is currently focused on malaria elimination and health systems strengthening working on initiatives with Malaria No More UK, Results UK, Gates Foundation and the Global Fund to achieve the Sustainable Development Goal 3.

Elvis is a leisure long distance runner, and has run 3 full marathons- the Paris, Athens and Amsterdam Marathons.

Dr Flavia Schlegel

International Science Council's inaugural Special Envoy for Science in Global Policy

Dr Flavia Schlegel has had a distinguished international career which includes positions at UNESCO and as a Science Diplomat in Washington DC, USA and Shanghai, China. Before joining the ISC, Dr Schlegel was the Assistant Director General for UNESCO’s Natural Sciences sector. During her tenure, she oversaw UNESCO’s response to multilateral development agendas such as the Sustainable Development Goals, the Paris Agreement, the Sendai Framework on disaster risk reduction and the Samoa Pathway.  Prior to her time at UNESCO, Dr Schlegel established swissnex China – the Swiss house for science, technology, innovation, and culture in Shanghai – a trans-disciplinary institution supported by public and private funding. She also served as Vice-Director for Public Health at the Swiss Federal Office of Public Health. Dr Schlegel holds a Medical Doctorate and a Master’s Degree in Organisational Development.

Since April 2019, Dr Schlegel serves as the ISC Special Envoy for Science in Global Policy. The appointment of a Special Envoy aims to strengthen ISC’s vision to advance science as a global public good. One of Dr Schlegel’s key roles is to strengthen relations and cooperation between the ISC and the UN family.

Jainaba M.L. Kah, PH.D.

Urban Planning and Policy Development Expert

Jainaba M.L. Kah has a Ph.D. in Urban Planning and Policy Development from the Edward J. Bloustein School, Rutgers – The State University of New Jersey, USA. She also earned a Masters in Development Economics (M.D.E.) from Dalhousie University, Canada, and a Bachelor of Commerce (Cum Laude) from St. Mary’s University in Halifax, Canada. 
Dr. Kah has extensive practitioner experience having worked for the World Bank as an Urban/Transport Specialist and also served as a consultant for the USA Federal Transit Administration; Financial Analyst for Amnesty International; and Audit Senior at KPMG. Dr. Kah served for four years as the Chairperson of the Adjudication Committee of the All Africa Public Sector Innovation Awards (AAPSIA), which is the first Africa wide ministerial initiative celebrating innovation in the Public Sector. She spent six (6) years as the Director General of the Management Development Institute (MDI) in The Gambia and was also the Acting Dean of the School of Business and Public Administration at the University of The Gambia. Dr. Kah was an Assistant Professor of Public Policy and Administration and Director/Coordinator of the International Public Service and Development Track (IPSD) at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, USA for six (6) years. She also taught at the American University of Sharjah in the United Arab Emirates whiles on academic leave from Rutgers. She was the Chairperson of the Board of Directors of Keystone Bank (renamed MegaBank), The Gambia for 3 years. 
Dr. Jainaba M.L. Kah returned to the American University of Nigeria (AUN) in September, 2017 as an Associate Professor and Coordinator of Graduate Programs, where she had won the “Outstanding Faculty Award in SBE” in November 2008. She was Associate Vice Rector for Faculty Affairs and later Associate Vice Rector for Strategy Development & Associate Professor of Management and Public Policy at Azerbaijan Diplomatic Academy (ADA) University where she worked for almost 3 years. Dr. Kah was conferred a National Merit Award – Insignia: Member of The Republic of The Gambia (MRG) in 2014 in recognition of her contribution to higher education. 

Abdoulaye SENE

President of the organizing committee and Executive Secretary of the 9th World Water Forum "Dakar 2021"

Abdoulaye SENE is the President of the organizing committee and Executive Secretary of the 9th World Water Forum "Dakar 2021".

He is the founding President of the International Reflection Group "Global Local Forum", former President of the Regional Council of the Fatick Region (2002-2009), former Deputy and President of the Commission on Development and Spatial Planning of the National Assembly of Senegal (2007-2012), in charge of the water, energy, environment and sustainable development sectors in particular. 

Abdoulaye SENE, was from 2013 to 2017, Chairman of the Board of Directors of SOGEM/OMVS (in charge of the management of hydroelectric dams of the Organization for the Development of the Senegal River). He was Senior Technical Advisor to the Minister of Mines, Energy and Hydraulics of Senegal (2001-2002), Head of the Mission for the Study and Development of Fossil Valleys (1994-2000), Director of Rural Engineering and Hydraulics of Senegal (1990-1994), Director of the Maintenance and Care of Hydraulic Works (1984-1990).

He was a member of various Boards of Directors of national, sub-regional and international institutions working in the water, rural development, environment and decentralization sectors.

Abdoulaye SENE, is a Civil Engineering Engineer (École Polytechnique Thiès, 1978), specialized in hydraulics (Master's degree from École Polytechnique de Montréal, 1981).

He has provided various national and international courses, conferences, consultations and expertise in the fields of water, rural development, decentralization, climate change and governance.

Beaugas Orain Djoyum

Beaugas Orain Djoyum, General Manager, ICT Media STRATEGIES

Beaugas Orain Djoyum is the General Manager of ICT Media STRATEGIES, an e-reputation and personal branding firm that also offers Business intelligence services in the sectors of ICT, Telecoms and Digital in Africa. 

The firm also proposes training in e-Reputation and digital communication.  Moreover, ICT Media Strategies produces specialised media contents for specialised media.


Beaugas - Orain DJOYUM has become over the years the consultant you need when you think about personal branding and digital communication strategies. Not only in Cameroon, but also in many African countries where he helps individuals, administrations and companies. 


He is also the editor of Digital Business Africa (www.digitalbusiness.africa), the best-specialised french web platform that produce daily strategics news on ICT, Telecommunications and Digital in Africa. 

Selim Bora

President, Summa International Construction Group

Selim Bora holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Metallurgical Engineering, from the Middle East Technical University of Ankara, as well as a Master of Science degree in Industrial Engineering from the Alfred University of New York.

Mr. Bora became President of Summa in 1999 after holding the position of Vice-President for 3 years. Since its foundation in 1989, Summa has enjoyed a reputation for responsible service and on-time, design build, turn-key contract delivery in exigent international markets. Summa operates in Sub-Sahara Africa namely; Equatorial Guinea, Senegal, Rwanda, Congo Brazzaville, Niger, Benin.

Under the leadership of Mr. Bora, the Group was ranked within Top 225 International Construction Companies by Engineering News Record- a prominent publication. Today Summa has diversified business interest and operations in BOT Airports, Hospitals, Shopping Malls, Hotels and similar infrastructure projects as an Investor/EPC Contractor globally.

Selim Bora is Chairman of non-profit “Akyurt Foundation” and also chairs in several economic boards.

Yacine Barro Bourgault

Director of the Small and Medium Business Segment for Emerging Markets in the Africa and Middle East region, Microsoft

Yacine grew up and followed her primary and secondary studies in Senegal. Then graduated from INSEEC Paris (a French Business school), she began her career as Sales Manager at Cisco Systems in Paris.

She then returned to Senegal in 2004 to open the first representation of Microsoft as Business Development Manager for West and Central Africa. In 2008, Yacine joined the headquarters of the Celtel Group (now Bharti) in Amsterdam to launch the corporate segment of the mobile phone operator in 21 African countries.

With her experience, which enabled her to acquire a proven versatility in strategy, project management and business development, Yacine embarks on the Africa24 adventure and launched the first international news channel on Africa.  She held the position of CEO and led the daily deployment of Africa24 in the global media landscape.

In July 2017, Yacine returns to Microsoft as General Manager of the West and Central Africa Region, based in Dakar. A year later, she was very quickly promoted to the position of Director of the Small and Medium Business Segment for Emerging Markets in the Africa and Middle East region.

Achime Malick NDIAYE

Switching Engineer, ICT Director-Ministry of Digital Economy and Telecommunications-SENEGAL.

Member Focus Group and Expert on Digital Financial Services (DFS)
Member Focus Group e-currency and Expert e-money strategies
Member Working Group Security-Infrastructure-Trust of FIGI
(Financial Inclusion Global Initiative)
Vice-Chair and Team Managment member Study Group 20 IoT and SSCC
Vice-Chair Regional Group SG20RG-AFR
Contributeur dans la Commission d’Etudes 3 sur les aspects financiers de l’UIT-T
Expert in Regulatory aspects of technologies
Expert in Financial Aspects Telecommunications
National Coordinator Working Group E-Commerce-Senegal

Ibrahima Khaliloulah DIA

Digital Health Expert and Coordinator of Digital Health and Health Card, Ministry of Health and Action, Government of Senegal

From 2008 to 2016, I coordinated the Ministry's Health Card Office. In 2016, I was appointed coordinator of the Health and Social Card Unit, Digital Health and Health Observatory (CSSDOS) which is attached to the Secretary General of MSAS.

I coordinated the development and implementation of several health maps and the National Digital Health Strategy. I currently pilot digital projects related to the patient file and telemedicine.

I am associate professor at the African Center of Studies and Management (CESAG of Dakar), at Alioune DIOP University of Bambey. I teach at the Public Health Institute of Dakar (ISED) and at the Department of Geography of UCAD. I conducted my academic research in the areas of the Health Information System, Geo-information and Environment and Health.

I graduated from the University Cheikh Anta DIOP Dakar (UCAD) with a doctorate postgraduate degree in January 2012, the National School of Health and Social Development (ENDSS), the Faculty of Science and Technology of the Education and Training Dakar (former Ecole Normale Supérieure) and the University of Science, Technology and Technology of Bamako and Felix Houphouet BOIGNY University of Abidjan

Thierno Birahim AW

Managing Director of Dakar Urban Transport Council (Conseil Exécutif des Transports Urbains de Dakar)

Thierno Birahim AW is the Managing Director of Dakar Urban Transport Council (Conseil Exécutif des Transports Urbains de Dakar) the Urban Transport Authority for Dakar metropolitan area, since September 2016. He worked as research assistant from 2004 to 2007 and as research engineer from 2007 to 2008 at the City, Mobility and Transport laboratory (École Nationale des Ponts et Chaussées).
His PhD thesis in transport economy focused on the design and assessment of integrated urban development and transport scenarios. From 2008 to 2014, he worked as engineer in the French engineering company SETEC International in Paris, in charge of general and economic transport studies. He was then appointed primary technical advisor to the Minister of Infrastructure, Land Transport, and Opening-Up in Senegal from 2014 to 2016.
He has a long and solid experience in transport and mobility in urban environment and at regional level and has been responsible for managing complex studies and researches, for assessing and presenting strategic recommendations, and for helping public authorities to implement their projects for public sector and private companies. His work has been implying constant relations with public decision makers, operational teams and a deep knowledge of procurement procedures.

Marieme Jamme

Founder & CEO of iamtheCODE

Mariéme grew up in rural Senegal, from an oligarch mother who gave her away at an early age and later was raised in various foster houses including in an orphanage and then trafficked as a young prostitute to Paris at the age of 13. She experienced considerable hardship during her childhood and did not have a formative education until the age of 16 years old when she taught herself how to read and write. Passionate about education and providing Digital Skills for free to the marginalised communities,

She's an award-winning technologist and pioneer in system change and a Young Global Leader of the World Economic Forum. In Sept 2017, she won the Innovation Award at the Global Goals Award 2017 by UNICEF and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation as a GoalKeeper for her work in advancing the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, supporting globally young women and girls and governments. A BBC 100 Women nominee, she was named twice on the UK Powerlist 2017 and 2018 of Britain’s 100 most influential people of African and African Caribbean Heritage. Mariéme Jamme became the Duke of York (Inspiring Digital Enterprise Award) Industry Ambassador in 2018. The first black woman to hold this title.

Mariéme Jamme is a Senegalese-born British businesswoman and investor in technology. Her consultancy company Spotone Global Solutions helps technology companies to set a foothold in Africa, Europe, the Middle East, and Asia. She has supported and advised many organizations such as Google, Ernest and Young, Microsoft, UN Women, Unilever, Legatum Institute, HSBC Private Banking, the Office of Gordon and Sarah Brown, The Africa Progress Panel chaired by Kofi Annan, the Obama Administration, DOW Chemical, Kano Computing, the Argentine Government and multiple African governments. She is often called the diplomat of technology. Mariéme was also named twice in 2014 and 2016 as one of the 100 most influential Africans by the African Business Magazine and in 2012 by Forbes as the 20 youngest powerful women in Africa. Mariéme is a judge and Academy member of the Prestigious Global Teachers Prize Academy. Co-Founded Africa Gathering; the leading platform Europe that enable businesses, governments, investor and entrepreneurs to share ideas about Africa for positive change.

She also recently joined forces with a group of African leaders to create Accur8Africa, a new platform aiming at enabling governments, businesses, entrepreneurs and the civil society in Africa at measuring the success of the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030 with Accurate Data.

She was honoured as a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum for her activism work in empowering and investing in young women and girls in Africa through Creative learning, entrepreneurship, science, technology, engineering, art, mathematics, and design (STEAMD). Marieme’s latest venture includes the launch of IAMTHECODE, as the first African- led global movement aiming at mobilising governments, businesses and investors to support girls and young women in STEAMD (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, Mathematics, and Design).

Her goal is to empower 1 million young women and girls globally to become coders by 2030 and to align with the United Nations 2030 Agenda. Mariéme is the newest board member of the Worldwide Web Foundation. She will be supporting the foundation in the area of gender and digital equality. Mariéme is the first black woman to be named and invited to be part of the UBS Group Global visionaries program.

In 2018, Mariéme became a founding member of the Future Talks Expedition, which gathered 100 global leaders from 42 countries to visit the Arctic (North Pole.) She is the first Senegalese woman who made it to the Arctic. Marieme was nominated in October 2019 by Apolitical as one of 100 most influential people in Digital Government. Mariéme resides in Surrey with her teenage son.

BA Housseynou

Digital Health Expert, World Health Organization

I have been working since 2014 as an expert in digital health at the level of the Department of Health Systems Strengthening at the level of WHO Africa for the promotion and use of digital health services at the level of the health systems of the Member States. In this context I support countries to develop and implement E-Health strategies and monitor and evaluate their impact on country health systems.

Before joining the WHO, I headed the ICT Department of the telecommunications operator MAURITEL from the former Office of Posts and Telecommunications of Mauritania for 10 years. During this period I led several projects and programs including the connection of Mauritania to the Internet in 1997 and the development of the National Network of Data Transmission. I also participated in several programs at the African level including the creation of AFRINIC.

Between 2001 and 2006, I was National Director of ICT in my country. During this period I coordinated the development of the national ICT strategy and implemented the E-GOV project in 2005. I also had to contribute to the development of telemedicine in Mauritania with the technical and financial support of the International Telecommunication Union and the University Hospital of Geneva.

Between 2007 and 2010, I served as Secretary General at the level of the Ministries of Employment and Vocational Training, Telecommunications and the Ministry of Administration Modernization.

From 2010 to 2013 I held the positions of Minister of Environment and Sustainable Development and Minister of Health.
Parallel to my administrative duties I gave courses at the University of Nouakchott and I was president of the Internet Society section of Mauritania.

I graduated from the National Institute of Telecommunications of Rabat in Morocco and from the National School of Electronics and Applications (ENSEA) of Cergy in France.

Mauricio Cordova

Founder, Fair Cap

Godfrey Mutizwa

Financial Journalist

Godfrey Mutizwa is a freelance financial journalist based in Johannesburg. He has covered African business for the past 34 years across print and broadcast media working for both regional and international media.

Previously, Godfrey was Chief Editor of CNBC Africa and before that spent a decade at Bloomberg News and Reuters. He currently writes for publications including City Press and Acumen. He presents Power Lunch and Closing Bell on CNBC Africa and also occasionally presents business on Johannesburg-based radio station Power FM.

Godfrey has covered and moderated debates at international conferences like the World Economic Forum in Davos and annual meetings of the African Development Bank and the Africa Export-Import Bank.

Anna BA Dia


She is among the 50 most influential women in Africa, as established by the Jeune Afrique magazine ranking of July 2019 . Anna BA is a very discreet person, little known of the general public. She’s the CEO of the SIPRES, a housing development company that specializes in single detached houses. She is the majority shareholder of her company where, in 2016, women represent 65% of employees.
The eldest of 8 children, Anna was lucky to have parents who were educators. "They raised us without gender discrimination."
After her baccalaureate, she began studying architecture in Senegal, before moving on to France after earning a scholarship. That she then continued in France via a scholarship. She returned to live abroad through her marriage, then returned to Senegal to work in an architecture firm. Fate and hard work combined with faith did the rest : “I had a land opportunity that led me to create Sipres. It was in 1989!” It took some time, but some 30 years later, her company is now among the leaders in the real estate. 

Entertainment by Youssou N’Dour

Youssou N’Dour wants the world to stop haggling over the wealth of Africa, a continent where Senegal plays a leading role. 

Six years after the reggae campaign and his Bob Marley cover on the Dakar-Kingston album, the Prince of the Medina of Dakar has been back in the recording studio.

While he was serving as Minister of Culture and then Tourism in the government of President Macky Sall (elected in 2012), he put his artistic activities on hold, but his current status as ‘Minister Advisor to the President’ has given him more leeway. “In Africa, there’s a dynamic movement driven by culture. Africa needs a smile on its face and must show its strengths. Senegal is a strong, pacific country with deep roots. 

Extending the bridges that Youssou N’Dour is keen to build between diasporas, Africa Rekkbrings us Song Daan, a duo with rap and R&B star Akon, who was born in the USA and raised as a child in Senegal.