ECA bids farewell to Abdoulie Janneh, promises to build on his legacy


ECA Press Release 137/2012

Addis Ababa, 29 August 2012 (ECA) – ECA staff bid farewell to Abdoulie Janneh Under Secretary-General and Executive Secretary of the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) after 7 years of service at the helm.  The Town Hall event held in his honor underscored the achievements that have enabled the Commission to better align itself to the needs of the member States and the priorities of the African Union.

“I am very proud of what I am leaving behind,” said Mr. Janneh in his parting words to what he fondly termed as his other family. He praised the dedicated and competent staff based in Addis and in the Subregional Offices for turning the Commission into what it is today, and said: “We should not forget that things happen because of people and because of that we have to support and encourage them.”

He paid homage to former AU Chairperson, Mr. Alpha Oumar Konaré and outgoing Chairperson Mr. Jean Ping for their support and collaboration with the ECA. The relationship, he said, was “vital for the Continent as it was the comparative advantage of the ECA.’

For his part, Mr. Abdalla Hamdok, ECA Deputy Executive Secretary said that Mr. Janneh was “leaving on a high note as he had guided the institution through a repositioning exercise based on principles of excellence and cost effectiveness to improve the delivery of programmes.”

He underscored the partnerships he forged with the African Union Commission and the African Development Bank to address the development challenges of the continent.

“As Abdoulie Janneh leaves this institution he should be very proud that the seven years he spent here were worthwhile. He should be proud that he is part of this success story; that he put it on the right track and made it relevant to the African development issues and challenges,” Hamdok stressed.

Farewell speeches were also made by the UN Resident Coordinator representing the United Nations Country Team; the Representative of the United Liaison Team Representative; the Representative of the Staff Union; and the Director of the Sub-regional Office for Eastern Africa representing the other SROs. The speakers all praised Janneh for his dedication and leadership.

Mr. Abdoulie Janneh took office as the Under- Secretary-General and Executive Secretary of the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) in 2006. Under his term of office, Janneh will be remembered for being instrumental in strategically re-positioning the organization to better support Africa’s development agenda. He leaves a legacy of deepening partnerships for Africa, which he viewed as a necessary vehicle to mobilize support and build inclusiveness for shared development objectives.

The outgoing Under Secretary-General and Executive Secretary of the ECA also serves on the advisory panels of a number of organizations involved in Africa's development. A seminar held in his honor, themed: Africa in a Changing Global Economy was held on Thursday 30 August, where two publications were launched: Reflections on Africa's Development, Essays in Honor of Abdoulie Janneh and Integrating Africa, by Abdoulie Janneh. The Seminar was was attended by the diplomatic corps and ECA's partners.


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© 2012 Economic Commission for Africa