Ambassador Abdel-Fatau Musah, PhD, joined the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) from the United Nations, where he served as the Director of the West African Division of the Departments of Political & Peacebuilding Affairs and Peace Operations at United Nations. In that role, Amb. Musah backstopped the UN Special Political and Peacekeeping Field Missions, as well as broader peace and security engagements, in West Africa and the Sahel. Before assuming that role in January 2019, he was, from March 2016 until 31 December 2018, the Director of the Africa II Division in the UN Department of Political Affairs, handling Central, North and West Africa. He also served as Deputy Head of Office and Director of Political Affairs at the UN Office to the African Union (UNOAU) from May 2014 to March 2016, where he led the political pillar of UN’s strategic partnership with the African Union and the Regional Economic Communities on peace and security, and supported good offices work in Eastern and Southern Africa.
Before joining the UN, Amb. Musah served as Director of Political Affairs at ECOWAS from 2009 to 2014, and Senior Conflict Prevention Adviser to the Danish International Development Agency (DANIDA) and ECOWAS on West Africa (2005-2009). Amb. Musah spearheaded the development of the ECOWAS’ Conflict Prevention Framework (ECPF), the Organization’s strategic document for operational and structural conflict prevention. He coordinated electoral and security assessment missions and played a lead role in formulating and backstopping political responses to crises across West Africa. He also facilitated the establishment of the ECOWAS Electoral Assistance and Mediation Facilitation Divisions.
Amb. Musah has worked/consulted for, and served on the Boards of a number of institutions and INGOs/IGOs, including the UN Office in West Africa and the Sahel, UN Women, International IDEA, the Open Society Institute, the Center for Democracy and Development, the African Leadership Centre, and the British-American Security Information Council. He has also served as visiting lecturer in leading European and African institutions, and has written extensively on democratization, proliferation of small arms and light weapons, privatization of security, and broader peace and security issues in Africa.
Amb. Musah received his Bachelor’s degree from the University of Ghana, Legon, followed by a Master’s Degree in Mass Communication and Doctorate Degree in International Historical Relations from M.V. Lomonosov Moscow State University. He is fluent in English, French, Russian, Hausa and Twi.