IRI to Honor Mo Ibrahim with 2015 Freedom Award for His Commitment to Transparency and Good Governance

Washington, DC – At this year’s Freedom Award Ceremony, IRI will honor Dr. Mo Ibrahim, founder and chair of the Mo Ibrahim Foundation, for his service and commitment to transparency, accountability and good governance on the African continent.

Dr. Ibrahim will accept the award at a dinner in Washington, DC on September 9, which will also feature remarks by U.S. Senator John McCain, chairman of IRI’s Board of Directors.

“I am honored to receive this award from the International Republican Institute.  Throughout my life, I have been committed to strengthening good governance, increasing government transparency and fighting corruption in Africa and globally.  These are causes I know IRI shares, and I am grateful for their work and commitment to these important issues,” said Dr. Ibrahim.  “Addressing these issues are not just important for Africa, but for the world.” 

“I am excited to have Dr. Ibrahim as one of our awardees at this year’s Freedom Dinner,” said Ambassador Green, president of IRI.  “As someone who has spent a number of years working on the African continent, I have a deep appreciation of the work and dedication of Mo to good governance, accountability and transparency.  Because of his work, and the work of his foundation, the next generation of Africans will be better prepared to take on leadership roles in their countries.”

Other honorees that evening will be Speaker John A. Boehner and Boris Nemtsov (honored posthumously).

Mo Ibrahim is a leading voice for good governance, government accountability and transparency in Africa.  As the founder and chair of the Mo Ibrahim Foundation, which he established in 2006 to support good governance and leadership in Africa, he has worked tirelessly to improve and strengthen democratic governance.  Born in Sudan, Ibrahim has had a successful career in business and has said of Africa’s future, “Governance is everything.  Without governance we have nothing.”

Through the Ibrahim Foundation African leaders are gaining the tools needed to govern more effectively and the recognition they deserve for governing democratically.  The Ibrahim Prize for Achievement in African Leadership recognizes leaders who have dedicated their tenure in office to developing their countries, improving the welfare and livelihoods of their people and paving the way for sustainable development.  The Ibrahim Index of African Governance is an annual assessment of the quality of governance in every African country.  The Ibrahim Forum brings together African political and business leaders, representatives from civil society, multilateral and regional institutions as well as Africa’s major international partners to identify policy challenges and priorities.  The Ibrahim Leadership Fellowship prepares the next generation of African leaders by providing them with senior-level work opportunities at organizations, whose mandate it is to improve the economic and social prospects of Africa.

Dr. Ibrahim has a distinguished business career.  In 1989 he founded Mobile Systems International, a world leading cellular consulting and software provider and in 1998, Celtel International, one of Africa’s leading mobile telephone companies which pioneered mobile services in Africa.  He is also founding chairman of Satya Capital Limited, a private equity fund focused on Africa.

Dr. Ibrahim has received numerous honorary degrees and fellowships from a range of academic institutions including Birmingham University, Bradford University, De Montfort University – Leicester, Imperial College – London, London Business School, Royal Academy of Engineering, SOAS – University of London and University of Pennsylvania.

Dr. Ibrahim is also the recipient of a number of awards including The GSM Association’s Chairman’s Award for Lifetime Achievement (2007), The Economist Innovation Award for Social and Economic Innovation (2007), BNP Paribas Prize for Philanthropy (2008), Oslo Business for Peace Award (2009), Raymond Georis Prize for Innovative Philanthropy in Europe (2010), Clinton Global Citizen Award (2010), the Millenium Excellence Award for Actions in Africa (2012), the David Rockefeller Bridging Leadership Award (2012), the Africare Leadership Award (2013), the Kiel Institute Global Economy Prize (June 2013), the Eisenhower Medal for Distinguished Leadership and Service (May 2014), the Foreign Policy Association Medal (June 2014).

Dr. Ibrahim was made Commander of the Order of the Lion (Senegal) by President Macky Sall (February 2014) and Commandeur of the Wissam Arch by H.M. King Mohammed VI of Morocco (July 2014).


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