Secretary-General Nominates Advisory Group of Experts on Review of Peacebuilding Architecture

SG/A/1541-PBC/104
22 January 2015

Secretary-General Nominates Advisory Group of Experts on Review of Peacebuilding Architecture

On 15 December, the Presidents of the General Assembly and the Security Council asked the Secretary-General to nominate up to seven experts to form an advisory group on the review of the peacebuilding architecture.

The Secretary-General is pleased to announce the nomination of the following experts:

  • Anis Bajwa (Pakistan)
  • Saraswathi Menon (India)
  • Funmi Olonisakin (Nigeria)
  • Ahmedou Ould-Abdallah (Mauritania)
  • Charles Petrie (France)
  • Gert Rosenthal (Guatemala)
  • Edith Grace Ssempala (Uganda)

In accordance with the Terms of Reference endorsed by the General Assembly and the Security Council, the Advisory Group of Experts will undertake country studies in Burundi, Central African Republic, Sierra Leone, South Sudan, and Timor-Leste; will conduct a policy and institutional review of the peacebuilding architecture; and will develop findings and recommendations based on this work.

The Advisory Group of Experts will submit a report to the General Assembly and the Security Council for consideration through an intergovernmental process managed by co-facilitators appointed by the two principal organs.  The intergovernmental process should be concluded with a concurrent decision by both organs before the end of 2015.

List of Members

Anis Bajwa
Former Director of the Division on Policy Evaluation and Training, Department of Peacekeeping Operations, and former Deputy Special Representative of the Secretary-General in Timor-Leste.  Nationality: Pakistan
Mr. Bajwa was Director for Policy, Evaluation and Training in the Department of Peacekeeping Operations, as well as Inspector General for Peacekeeping.  In 2005, Secretary-General Kofi Annan appointed him as his Deputy Special Representative in Timor-Leste.  In 2003, Mr. Bajwa joined the United Nations Secretariat in New York as Director of Change Management in the Department of Peacekeeping Operations.  From 2000 to 2002 Mr. Bajwa served as the United Nations Chief Military Observer in Georgia.  He was the Chief of Staff of the United Nations Mission in Somalia in 1993-94.
Retired Major General Bajwa was born in 1947 and commissioned in the Regiment of Artillery, Pakistan Army, in 1966, where he served for over 37 years.  In October 1999 he was appointed as the first Chief of Staff to Pakistan’s Chief Executive. 

Saraswathi Menon

Former Director of the Policy Division in the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN-Women).  Nationality: India.
Ms. Menon brings an extensive experience as a researcher and academician as well as in the United Nations system.  She was most recently the Director of the Policy Division at UN-Women.  Prior to this assignment she was the Director of the United Nations Development Programme's (UNDP) Evaluation Office.  Ms. Menon's career includes experience in both policy and programme areas.
She served as United Nations Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative in Mongolia, UNDP Deputy Resident Representative in Nepal and Deputy Chief of the Regional Programme and Policy Division in UNDP's Regional Bureau for Asia and the Pacific.  Before joining UNDP, she lectured in sociology at Madras University in India.  She holds both a Master of Arts and Master of Philosophy degree in Sociology as well as a Doctor of Philosophy degree.
Prior to joining UNDP, Ms. Menon taught at Madras University in India. 

Funmi Olonisakin
Director, Security Leadership and Society Programme, King’s College London, and former member of the Office of the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict.  Nationality: Nigeria.
Ms. Olonisakin is the founding Director of the African Leadership Centre, which aims to build the next generation of African leaders in the fields of peace, security and development.  Trained in political science (BSc, Ife, Nigeria) and war studies (PhD, King’s College London).
Ms. Olonisakin has positioned her work to serve as a bridge between academia and the world of policy and practice.  Her academic research and writing has contributed to strategic thinking in post-conflict contexts and in the work of regional organizations such as the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and the African Union.  She has a keen interest in contributing to efforts to tackle the structural roots of armed conflict.  As such, she has devoted particular attention to the governance of security actors as well as the narratives that entrench the marginalization of women and youth in security and development processes in Africa.

Ahmedou Ould-Abdallah
President of the Centre for Strategies and Security for the Sahel Sahara (Centre 4s).  He served as Foreign Minister of Mauritania and Ambassador to the United States and the Benelux States.  Nationality: Mauritania.
During his time at the United Nations he served as the Special Representative of the Secretary-General to Burundi, West Africa and Somalia, and as Chairman of the Cameroon-Nigeria Mixed Commission.  From 1996 to 2002 he managed the Global Coalition for Africa in Washington, D.C., in close cooperation with World Bank.
Mr. Ould-Abdallah is a founding and advisory member of Transparency International, and a board member of Search for Common Ground and the Brandeis International Center for Ethics, Justice and Public Life.
He has written two books about his experience, including La Diplomatie Pyromane and Burundi on the Brink.

Charles Petrie
Former Executive Representative of the Secretary-General to Burundi and Deputy Special Representative of the Secretary-General in Somalia.  Nationality: France.
Mr. Petrie has over 20 years of extensive experience with the United Nations, which reflects expertise in conflict prevention, peacemaking, peacebuilding, and humanitarian and recovery/development action, with broad experience in the Great Lakes region of Africa, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Somalia, and Sudan as well as Afghanistan, the Middle East and Myanmar.
He served as Executive Representative for Burundi and Head of the United Nations Integrated Office in that country (BINUB), as the Deputy Special Representative in Somalia, and as the United Nations Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator in Myanmar.
Finally, since leaving the United Nations, Mr. Petrie was designated by the Secretary-General to lead the Internal Review Panel on the United Nations actions in Sri Lanka.  He has also served as the Special Policy Adviser to the President of the Transitional Federal Government of Somalia, and has been the initiator and coordinator of the Myanmar Peace Support Initiative. 

Gert Rosenthal
Mr. Rosenthal has intermittently served his own Government (Guatemala) and the United Nations.
Among his activities he was Minister of Planning of Guatemala (1969-1974) and Foreign Minister (2006-2008).  He was the Executive Secretary of the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (1988-1998).  He has been the Permanent Representative of his country at the United Nations on two occasions (1999-2004, 2008-2014) and headed his delegation in the Security Council during 2012-2013.  He was President of the Executive Board of UNDP/UNFPA (United Nations Population Fund) in 2001, President of the Economic and Social Council in 2003, Vice-President of the Peacebuilding Commission in 2011 and Chair of the Fifth Committee on two occasions (2001 and 2011).
He is an economist who did his undergraduate and graduate studies at the University of California at Berkeley.  He has written numerous articles, mostly on development issues but also on the United Nations.  He is married and has four daughters.

Edith Grace Ssempala
Former Director, International Affairs, Office of the World Bank's Vice-President for External Affairs, former Ambassador and Permanent Representative to the African Union.  Nationality: Uganda.
Ambassador Ssempala has served as an Ambassador for Uganda to a wide array of countries, the United States, Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Finland, Iceland, Ethiopia and to the Republic of Djibouti.  She was also Permanent Representative of Uganda to the African Union.
She is also credited with a successful campaign for the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) and the United States President's Emergency Relief Fund for HIV/AIDS.

For information media. Not an official record.