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Ken Wiwa

  • Mentor 2005
  • Alumni
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Former Special Assistant to the President of Nigeria on issues related to Peace, Conflict Resolution and Reconciliation
Government of Nigeria

    Ken Wiwa is one of the world's most influential human rights activists and authors. At his death a resident of Abuja, Nigeria, he was a Special Assistant to the President of Nigeria on Peace, Conflict Resolution and Reconciliation. Mr. Wiwa was the son of the late Nigerian playwright and activist Ken Saro-Wiwa, who was executed in 1995. Ken Wiwa was an unfailing champion for the claims and rights of his people in debates over the effects of globalization on the nation state in Africa, cultural diversity, ethnic identity and the environment.

    Mr. Wiwa's first book, a critically acclaimed memoir called In the Shadow of a Saint, is an examination of the dilemmas of fathers and sons, families and community, the paradox of identity, of belonging and the struggle between exile and home. He wrote for various newspapers and magazines around the world, including several in Britain and Africa; he was a weekly columnist for The Globe and Mail and he continued to write an occasional column for this paper. Mr. Wiwa also produced several television documentaries in Britain and for the CBC.

    Mr. Wiwa was a Saul Rae Fellow and Scholar-at-Risk at Massey College, and a Fellow at the Munk Centre for International Studies at the University of Toronto. Mr. Wiwa was selected in 2005 as a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum.

    Ken Wiwa died in October 2016.