Diplomats, scholars to make Gambari’s legacies resource pool
Prominent Nigerian scholars and researchers drawn from the media and related fields have teamed up with some renowned diplomats in a project that will chronicle the legacies of Prof. Ibrahim Gambari, the Chief of Staff (CoS) to President Muhammadu Buhari, to make it a global resource portal.
The project is to be led by Strategic Facilitations International Limited, in conjunction with Savannah Centre for Diplomacy, Democracy and Development (SCDDD).
A major step towards the commencement of the project was taken on Friday, August 6, 2021, in Abuja, with the signing of a substantive Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between Strategic Facilitations and SCDDD.
Savannah Centre, founded by Gambari, promotes research, advocacy, training and policy analysis in the areas of conflict prevention, management, democracy and sustainable development in Nigeria, Africa and the world in general.
The project would ensure the digitisation of speeches, books and all of Gambari’s intellectual works and the establishment of an e-library as a resource pool for research and other purposes. The portal would be linked to other global research centres with similar objectives.
Former Nigerian Principal Representative to ECOWAS, Aminu Wisdom, said the project, which predated the appointment of Gambari as CoS, was intended to relive the culture that preserves positive strides in the form of legacies of great individuals in the country.
“In this part of the world where legacies are freely diminished by certain events, we have decided to preserve the legacies of one of our own greatest personalities for the benefit of our children and generations yet to come,” Wisdom, who is co-lead in the project, said during the MoU signing.
He said the decision to do something that is world-class was predicated on the need to keep track of history as a guide for the future, adding that the project, which involves the deployment of technology, would be the first of its kind in Africa.
The former envoy said the team of diplomats and intellectuals to execute the project was painstakingly assembled over time with a preference for people with proven track records in their respective fields to underscore the importance of the project.
Gambari, a renowned non-academic diplomat, held several positions at the United Nations (UN), as the President of United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), Under-Secretary-General as well as the first Special Adviser on Africa to the UN Secretary-General, Kofi Annan.
Having served as the Minister of External Affairs between 1984 and 1985 under General Muhammadu Buhari’s military regime, after serving as the Director-General of the Nigerian Institute of International Affairs (NIIA), is the longest-serving Nigerian Ambassador to the UN, serving under five heads of state and presidents.
Savannah Centre’s Executive Director, Sani Bala, said the calibre of people in the team exemplified the quality of performance and excellence which Gambari represents.