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Security and Justice at a Crossroads : the Future of Global Governance
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The Academic Council on the United Nations System inaugurated the John W. Holmes Memorial Lecture Series in 1989 in honor of a founding member of ACUNS. Mr. Holmes had served on the planning committee for the founding conference of ACUNS and the provisional committee in 1987-88. The talk he prepared for the first ACUNS Annual Meeting in 1988, Looking Backwards and Forwards, was the first publication in the Council’s series of Reports and Papers.

ACUNS is pleased to announce that the John W. Holmes Memorial Lecture at the 2016 Annual Meeting will be given by H.E. Ibrahim Gambari, Co-Chair, Commission on Global Security, Justice and Governance; former Permanent Representative of Nigeria to the UN; and former Foreign Minister of Nigeria. Ambassador Gambari is also co-chair for the Commission on Global Security, Justice & Governance, which is a joint project of The Hague Institute for Global Justice and the Stimson Center.

  • Read the extended version of H.E. Ibrahim Gambari’s lecture (updated August 2016)  PDF Download Button

H.E. Ibrahim Gambari with Dr. Anjali Dayal

Resources
The UN at 70: Confronting the Crisis of Global Governance
Gambari Urges UN Reform at Columbia World Leader’s Forum

About H.E. Ibrahim Gambari
Prior to joining the United Nations Secretariat as Under-Secretary-General in December 1999, Professor Ibrahim Gambari holds the record of being the longest serving Ambassador/Permanent Representative of Nigeria to the United Nations (January 1990 to October 1999).  He was born in Ilorin, Nigeria, on November 24, 1944 and attended Kings College, Lagos, as well as the London School of Economics where he obtained a B.Sc. (Economics) degree in Political Science with a specialty in International Relations.  Professor Gambari received his MA in 1970 and his PhD in 1974, both in Political Science/International Relations and from New York’s Columbia University.

From 1969–74, Professor Gambari taught at the City University of New York and later at the State University of New York (Albany).  He returned home to Nigeria to teach at the Ahmadu Bello University in Zaria, first as Senior Lecturer (1977–80), then as Reader and subsequently as Professor (1983).  He was also Chairman (Head) of the Department of Political Science at the University in Zaria (1982–1983), where he founded the first undergraduate Program in International Studies in Nigeria. Professor Gambari was appointed Director-General of the Nigerian Institute of International Affairs in October 1983, a position he held until his appointment as the Minister of External Affairs of Nigeria following the December 1983 military change of government.  At the end of his tenure in August 1985, he returned to Ahmadu Bello University to continue teaching.

Professor Gambari was appointed Director-General of the Nigerian Institute of International Affairs in October 1983, a position he held until his appointment as the Minister of External Affairs of Nigeria following the December 1983 military change of government.  At the end of his tenure in August 1985, he returned to Ahmadu Bello University to continue teaching.  Between 1986 and 1989, he served as Visiting Professor at the John Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies in Baltimore, Maryland and also taught at both Georgetown University and Howard University in Washington, D.C.  Professor Gambari was also a Research Fellow at Brookings Institution, Washington D.C. in the latter part of 1989.  Furthermore, he was a Resident Scholar, Rockefeller Foundation Bellagio Study and Conference Centre, Italy in 1989.

During his sabbatical leave in the USA, Professor Gambari authored two books, THEORY AND REALITY IN FOREIGN POLICY DECISION MAKING (N.J.: Humanities Press), and COMPARATIVE STUDY OF REGIONAL ECONOMIC INTEGRATION: THE CASE OF ECOWAS (N.J.: Humanities Press).  Prior to these, he authored THE DOMESTIC POLITICS OF NIGERIA’S FOREIGN POLICY (Nigeria: Ahmadu Bello University Press).  He has published and continues to publish articles in national and international scholarly journals and is working on two forthcoming books: AFRICA’S SECURITY QUESTIONS AT THE END OF THE 20TH CENTURY INTO THE NEW MILLENNIUM and THE UNITED NATIONS IN A CHANGING WORLD ORDER: AN AFRICAN PERSPECTIVE.

As Nigeria’s Ambassador and Permanent Representative to the United Nations, Professor Gambari has been a senior member of the Nigerian Delegation to ten consecutive sessions of the General Assembly (44th to 54th); he also served as President of the Security Council on two occasions (May 1994 and October 1995).  He has chaired the UN Special Committee Against Apartheid, which successfully saw the demise of that long-standing social injustice and the establishment of democratic rule in South Africa.  He has led several United Nations Missions, including the Special Committee Against Apartheid Mission to South Africa and the Security Council Missions to South Africa, Burundi, Rwanda and Mozambique.  Professor Gambari chaired the UN Special Committee on Peace-Keeping Operations from 1990 to 1999.  He served as member, Board of Trustees of the United Nations Institute of Training and Research (UNITAR) from 1993 to 1999 and also President, Executive Board of UNICEF (January to December, 1999).

Since January 2000, Professor Gambari has been paying particular attention to the conflict in Angola and, on behalf of the Secretary-General, coordinated United Nations support for the peace process there.  He later served as Special Representative of the Secretary-General and Head of the United Nations Mission to Angola (UNMA), from September 2002 to February 2003 and in that capacity helped to bring the peace process under the Lusaka Protocol to a successful conclusion.

Professor Gambari is the founder of the Savannah Centre for Diplomacy, Democracy and Development, a non-governmental “think-tank” being established in Abuja, Nigeria, devoted to critical analyses of and solutions to the problems of conflict prevention, management and resolution; democratisation and sustainable development in Africa. He was a delegate to the last National Conference of Nigeria under the category of elder statesmen. In September, 2015, at the THISDAY 20th Anniversary Commemorations and Awards, he was honoured for his outstanding long Public Service.

Widely travelled, Professor Gambari is a scholar and a diplomat.  In recognition of his distinguished diplomatic and scholarly careers, he was the first African to be conferred with the title, Honorary Professor by Chugsan University (founded by and named after Dr. Sun Yat Sen, leader of the 1911 Peasant Revolution and first President of Nationalist China) (1985); the University of Bridgeport (USA) awarded him the Doctor of Humane Letters degree (honoris causa) (2002); the prestigious Johns Hopkins University elected him to membership of the University’s Society of Scholars (2002); and the Government of Nigeria awarded him the national honour, Commander of the Federal Republic (CFR) in 2003. Professor Gambari is the Pioneer Chancellor of the Kwara State University (KWASU), Ilorin, Nigeria.