AfDB appoints new communication boss

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African Development Bank's annual African Investment Forum Market Days will showcase transformative investment opportunities across the African continent
African Development Bank's annual African Investment Forum Market Days will showcase transformative investment opportunities across the African continent

Rhys Balicholo

The African Development Bank has appointed Mr Solomon Mugera as the new director of communication and external relations leading the bank group’s messaging and global strategic media relations.

Mr Mugera, a veteran journalist and hails from Kenya replaces Dr Victor Oladokun who retired a couple of years ago.

The appointment is with effect from October 1 this year.

In a statement, the AfDB said Mr Mugera is expected to contribute to the building of financial and political support for the African Development Bank Group to strengthen its role as a global thought leader of Africa’s most pressing developmental challenges.

AfDB Group president Dr Akinwumi Adesina said: “The African Development Bank Group is at the heart of the continent’s social economic development.

“Mr. Mugera will support the Bank Group’s vision and outreach effort to make the priorities, activities and accomplishments of the Bank known by both internal and external audiences.

“He is a highly respected and motivated media professional, with a solid track record in journalism and leadership.”

The bank said Mr Mugera brings extensive experience to this role.

“He is a seasoned journalist and media manager with over 20 years of expertise working internationally.

“As Head of Journalism for the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) Africa, Mr. Mugera presided over the largest expansion of the BBC on the African continent since the 1940s, supporting the corporation in reaching a weekly audience of more than 100 million across 12 languages on radio, television, digital and social media.

“With an annual budget of $42 million, Mr. Mugera managed a team of 600 staff in the UK and across Africa.”

Mr Mugera has extensive experience in leading multimedia operations, and an excellent track record of editorial leadership, communication, budget management, and stakeholder outreach.

According to the AfDB, Mr Mugera has good knowledge in change management and media training.

He is also lauded for possessing a clear understanding of international news and current affairs, the African media market, and the impact of digital technology.

Mr. Mugera joined the BBC in September 1998 and worked with various departments of the corporation.

He was appointed Editor of the BBC Swahili service in 2006 and became the first African to head the African region of the BBC World Service five years later.

In September 2015, he was promoted to the position of Senior Leader.

Before joining the BBC, Mr. Mugera worked with the Kenya Broadcasting Corporation and the privately owned Kenya Television Network.

“It is an honour to work for the African Development Bank Group and support its vision for the continent.

“This is an institution that is leading Africa’s effort to transform itself and make a real difference to the lives of millions of its people.

“The Bank has the talent, the expertise, knowledge and the story that needs to be told across Africa and to a global audience,” Mr Mugera said about his appointment.

As director of communication and external relations, Mr. Mugera is expected to contribute to building financial and political support for the African Development Bank Group and strengthen the Group’s role as a global thought leader on Africa’s most pressing development challenges.

He will manage corporate communications and external relations with key stakeholders, including media, civil society, foundations, the private sector, African countries, and international organizations.

Mr. Mugera will also be responsible for internal communication and engagement with Bank Group staff.

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