Mo Ibrahim (wikipedia
) is a Sudanese-born billionaire with opinions and goals for modern Africa. A recent New Yorker article
profiled him. Earning his Ph.D. in electrical engineering and subsequent employment in telecom led him to found Celtel, the wildly successful
(LGT PPT file) corporation that brought the mobile telephone revolution to Africa
, despite a corporation-wide refusal to participate in the rampant corruption and bribery seemingly required at the time (~9:30 in this
). He eventually sold Celtel
to MTC Kuwait, which allowed him to focus on other pursuits, namely further development and investment within Africa.
Currently, he wears several hats. He sits on the board of ONE
with Bono, to fight poverty. He is the co-founder of Satya Capital
, which invests in African companies. He is the chair of the board of the Mo Ibrahim Foundation
, dedicated to promoting excellence in leadership. The foundation has an annual prize, the Mo Ibrahim Prize for Achievement in African Leadership
, granting five million dollars and a pension to an uncorrupt African leader when hecedes power peacefully. It is a larger prize than a Nobel and its selections have naturally caused controversy. The 2007 winner
was Joaquim Chissano
of Mozambique. The 2008 winner was Festus Mogae
. Since that time, the Foundation has not awarded the prize, as in its view there were no appropriate recipients. The Foundation also maintains an index of governance
, using data from other sources to rank African nations, based on factors such as freedom of expression and access to clean water.