President of the General Assembly

His Excellency Mr. Tijjani Muhammad-Bande

On June 4 2019, the United Nations General Assembly elected the Permanent Representative of Nigeria to the United Nations as President of the 74th session.

Tijjani Muhammad-Bande has had an outstanding career as a scholar and diplomat. He received a BSc (Political Science) from Ahmadu Bello University, Nigeria (1979); an MA (Political Science) from Boston University, United States of America (1981); and a PhD (Political Science) from University of Toronto, Canada (1987).

He started his academic career at Usmanu Danfodiyo University, Nigeria, rising from Graduate Assistant in 1980 to full Professor in 1998, and ultimately to Vice-Chancellor, in 2004, a position he held for five years. During his tenure as Vice Chancellor, the University, with about 20,000 full-time students in various faculties, ranked first in the accreditation of academic programmes in Nigerian universities (2007).

Between 2000 and 2004, Professor Muhammad-Bande served as Director-General of Le Centre Africain de Formation et de Recherche Administratives pour le Développement (CAFRAD), in Tangiers, Morocco. Established by African governments in 1964, CAFRAD is the continent’s premier intergovernmental Centre for governance reform. Under his stewardship, the Centre improved much-needed training for senior African public servants, conducted specialized research on African governance issues, and worked with a variety of partners, in particular the Department of Economic and Social Affairs of the United Nations.

From 2010 to 2016, he held the position of Director-General of the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies, Nigeria’s most reputable policy institution for training leaders from the public and private sectors, including high echelon officials of Nigeria’s Armed Forces. In that capacity, he inspired a marked improvement in the quality of the Institute’s programming and activities. One of his signature initiatives in that regard was the establishment of the Political Parties Policy and Leadership Development Centre, the first of its kind in Africa.

As Nigeria’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations (2018-2019), Professor Mohammad-Bande worked with colleagues from all regions of the world to achieve common objectives. He served as Vice-President of the 71st session of the General Assembly and was active in several forums, including as Chair of the Special Committee on Peacekeeping Operations (C34), Member of the Advisory Board of the United Nations Counter-Terrorism Centre, and Chair of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Group.

Professor Muhammad-Bande was an assessor for the National Merit Award (Nigeria) and for professorial positions in universities. He has won merit awards and honours from institutions and governments, including the Government of the United States of America and the Government of China. Most notably, he was named Officer of the Order of the Federal Republic (OFR), one of Nigeria’s highest national honours.

He is married with four children, and his hobbies include swimming, soccer, field hockey, farming and music.