A renowned African business leader from Kenya, Ms Jane Karuku has been appointmed as the new president of the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA), Mr Kofi Annan, Chair of the organisation, announced April 11, 2012 in a statement.
Ms Karuku was selected after an exhaustive international search process, according to AGRA.
She takes over from Dr Namanga Ngongi who is retiring after five years as the first president of AGRA.
Ms Karuku joins AGRA from Telkom Kenya a subsidiary of France Telecom-Orange where she has been Deputy Chief Executive.
“Hundreds of thousands of poor rural households in Africa have already benefited from AGRA’s work and under Ms Karuku’s leadership we can look forward to continued success in moving African farmers along a path to prosperity and ensuring food security,” said Mr Kofi Annan.
Ms Karuku’s career has spanned over 20 years, most of which has been spent in the agricultural sector. She has held senior positions in a number of successful international corporate entities including Farmers Choice and Cadbury Limited where she served as the managing director with responsibility for 14 countries in the East and Central African region. Ms Karuku was educated at the University of Nairobi and holds an MBA from California National University.
Accepting her new post, the statement quoted Ms Karuku as saying “I am very excited and feel privileged to be part of the journey to transform the lives of millions of smallholder farmers, and look forward to when we can look back and celebrate this transformation as a ‘gift’ to the people of Africa and its future generations.”
Smallholder farming is a way of life in Africa, full of challenges and equally full of huge opportunities, she added.
By Ekow Quandzie