Debating Ideas is a new section that aims to reflect the values and editorial ethos of the African Arguments book series, publishing engaged, often radical, scholarship, original and activist writing from within the African continent and beyond. It will offer debates and engagements, contexts and controversies, and reviews and responses flowing from the African Arguments books.
This podcast was first published on the Reinventing Peace Blog at the World Peace Foundation site here
The podcast series “African Voices, African Arguments” features African scholars, writers, policy makers and activists on issues of peace, justice and democracy in partnership with the Institute of Global Leadership at Tufts University.
In the first podcast of the series, World Peace Foundation Executive Director, Alex de Waal interviews Abdul Mohammed, one of Africa’s leading public intellectuals.
“African Americans have made contributions, solidarity, support to Africa’s independence movement and to a certain extent they were also inspired by it…there was a connection between the first generation, the founding fathers in a sense…and the African American Struggle”
Abdul Mohammed is one of Africa’s leading public intellectuals. He was a student activist in the 1970s. He came to the United States as a refugee and worked on refugee resettlement programs in the U.S. In 1985, he returned to Africa, first to Sudan, and subsequently to Kenya, where he was a pioneering humanitarian activist and founded the NGO InterAfrica Group. In 1991, Abdul returned to his native Ethiopia where he has lived ever since, active as a civil society leader. He was the UNICEF representative to the African Union, and worked for the UN in Sudan. In Ethiopia, the Horn of Africa and across the continent, Abdul has engaged in a range of initiatives on agendas of humanitarian action, opening up Africa’s politics for more inclusive, democratic participation, and building an African system for peace and security. For the last ten years Abdul has been chief of staff and senior political advisor to the African Union High-Level Implementation Panel for Sudan and South Sudan, and the Horn of Africa.
Alex de Waal is the Executive Director of the World Peace Foundation at The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University. Considered one of the foremost experts on Sudan and the Horn of Africa, his scholarly work and practice has also probed humanitarian crisis and response, human rights, HIV/AIDS and governance in Africa, and conflict and peace-building.