Our Council


Arunma Oteh



Arunma Oteh OON is Chair of the Royal African Society. She has been an Academic Scholar at St. Antony’s College and an Executive-in-Residence at Saïd Business School, University of Oxford, since January 2019. Her research areas of focus are capital markets, economic development and financial technology. She is also a member of the London Stock Exchange Africa Advisory Group. She was previously Treasurer of the World Bank, Director General, Securities and Exchange Commission Nigeria, Group Vice President and Group Treasurer, African Development Bank Group. She started her career in 1985, at Centre Point Investments Limited, Nigeria. Ms. Oteh holds an MBA from Harvard Business School and a BSc, First Class Honors from the University of Nigeria, Nsukka. Ms Oteh has also served on several boards and has received several awards notably Nigeria’s Officer of the Order of Niger (OON) National Honour. She was named one of PowerList’s 2020 top 100 people of Black Heritage in the U.K., and one of Africa’s 50 most influential African women by Forbes Africa in March 2020.

Jide Olanrewaju

Vice Chairman

Jide Olanrewaju is a Partner at TPG Growth focused on Africa investments. Prior to joining TPG Growth in 2015, Mr. Olanrewaju was a Partner with Satya Capital, an Africa investment fund, where he worked for 6 years focused on transactions in the Healthcare, Consumer and Financial Services sectors. Previously, Mr. Olanrewaju was at Morgan Stanley for over 6 years where he worked in both the Merchant Banking and Investment Banking Divisions. Before joining Morgan Stanley, he also worked briefly at Goldman Sachs and Shell International in Investment Banking and Gas & Power respectively. Mr Olanrewaju has an MEng from Imperial College, London with a specialization in Nuclear Reactor Technology.

Gregory Kronsten


Gregory Kronsten joined FBN Capital as head of economics in 2011. He previously had a similar role at another Nigerian finance house, CSL Stockbrokers. For several years he worked at the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU), latterly as regional director (Africa). He left the EIU in 1997, and was an analyst of bond and currency markets in Africa for both WestLB and Commerzbank. In 2007 he moved to Trusted Sources, an independent emerging markets research house, to set up an Africa top-down macro product. His first job took him to Zaire (DRC) as a lending officer for an international bank. Gregory is a trustee of Rainbow Development in Africa, which runs small-scale agricultural projects in Mauritania and Senegal.

Dr Titi Banjoko


Dr Titi Banjoko is a healthcare professional with extensive experience in international development. She successfully pioneered the formation of AfricaRecruit a programme designed to build capacity in Africa using human capital as the main driver. Over the last 17 years she has successfully advocated the use of Diaspora capital as a developmental tool in Africa. She is actively engaged in advocating for Better Health in Africa working at strategic Global health level. Dr Banjoko serves on the board of the Nigerian Leadership Initiative.

Obi James

Elected Member


Obi James is a Certified Team Performance Coach and Founder of Obi James Consultancy Limited. She has over 10 years’ in-house people development experience gained from large multinational financial services organisations such as Deloitte, Morgan Stanley, Bank of America and Northern Trust. Obi specialises in transforming how leadership teams work together, helping them to shape their organisational culture and drive performance. She has coached and advised global leaders, teams and boards in organisations such as Thomson Reuters, Women in Banking & Finance (WIBF), Farfetch, Mayor of London, the NHS and Royal African Society. She also runs workshops and speaks on topics such as Collaborative Leadership as a Competitive Advantage and Creating Intelligent Teams at events such as the recent Global Finance Transformation Summit. When she is not coaching or advising business leaders, Obi is exploring London with her two daughters or visiting family in Finland.

Nike Jonah

Elected Member

Nike Jonah is the co-founder and Executive Director of the Pan African Creative Exchange (PACE) - that launched July 2018 at the Vrystaat Arts Festival in Bloemfontein, South Africa - and a Visiting Research Fellow at The Royal Central School of Speech and Drama (2017-2019). She is currently employed at Counterpoint Arts on their PopCulture and Social Change initiative. From 2004 to 2012 Nike developed and produced the Arts Council England’s flagship diversity initiative: Decibel Performing Arts Showcase. As a keen champion for diversity and equality in the arts, Nike has led numerous discussions and workshops in USA, South Africa, Canada, UK, Denmark, Australia and The Netherlands. She is a Trustee for The European Cultural Foundation, Birmingham Contemporary Music Group and The Bush Theatre.

Razia Khan

Elected Member


Razia Khan is Chief Economist for Africa and a well-known commentator on African markets. She joined Standard Chartered in 1997. She currently serves on the WEF’s Global Future Council on Migration and on the Advisory Board of the Royal Africa Society, and was named one of the 100 most influential Africans in 2015’ by New African Magazine. Razia holds a BSc (Hons) degree in economics and an MSc (Econ) in development, including monetary economics and international trade law, from the London School of Economics.

Ambreena Manji

Appointed Member, Ex Officio


Ambreena Manji is the current President of the African Studies Association (ASAUK) and has been Professor of Land Law and Development at Cardiff since 2014, where she co-founded the Law and Global Justice Centre. Her research is strongly interdisciplinary and collaborative. She has published on land law reform in Eastern Africa, on the history of African legal education, on law in African literature and on women and the law. She was previously Director of the British Academy's British Institute in Eastern Africa (2010-2014). Ambreena is the editor of African Affairs, a member of the editorial board of Social and Legal Studies and sits on the advisory boards of the Nordic Journal of Human Rights and Feminist Legal Studies.

Anne McCormick

Elected Member

Anne McCormick is a senior international executive and is currently Director for Global Public Policy at Ernst and Young. As an experienced leader, with twenty five years of experience in professional services and consumer goods, Anne has a strong track record of driving organisational performance and building corporate reputation.

Dr Peace Medie

Appointed Member, Ex Officio

Dr Peace Medie is Senior Lecturer in Gender and International Politics at the University of Bristol and a Research Fellow in the Legon Centre for International Affairs and Diplomacy at the University of Ghana. She has published on the implementation of women’s rights policies and norms, civilian protection, and policing in Africa. She is a 2015-2017 Oxford-Princeton Global Leaders Fellow and is also co-editor of African Affairs.

Baroness Northover

Co-opted Member

Baronness Lindsay Northover is the Prime Minister’s Trade Envoy to Angola and Zambia; she was a DFID Minister, and Minister for Africa, and served in other Departments as well in the Coalition Government. She is the Liberal Democrats’ House of Lords Spokesperson on Foreign Affairs. She is a member of Wilton Park’s Advisory Council, an Honorary Associate Professor at Imperial College’s Institute of Global Health Innovation, a former Council Member of the Overseas Development Institute, and a former Trustee of the Malaria Consortium, THET, and UNICEF UK. She was formerly a Lecturer at University College London and the Wellcome Institute.

Sotonye Oye-Somefun

Elected Member

Sotonye has been raising funds for good causes in the UK and around the world for over a
decade. She has project managed and delivered fundraising campaigns and has raised over
£45million and organised high value events raising £2.5million on average. She enjoys creating
and implementing strategies for charities of all sizes and forming strong relationships with
external and internal stakeholders at the highest levels to drive positive fundraising culture and
activity. Sotonye works as the Head of Philanthropy and Special Events at national disability
charity Sense. Prior to Sense she worked at US based education charity Room to Read,
Tearfund, fundraising consultancy CCS and The Royal Society of Chemistry. Sotonye is also a
Founding Member of Impact 100 London.

Andrew Skipper

Elected Member

Having headed up the firm's global corporate practice for over 10 years, Andrew Skipper is now Head of Africa Practice, Hogan Lovells LLP, overseeing one of the most dynamic and entrepreneurial groups within the firm. As head of the global team, Andrew ensures that Hogan Lovells work and relationships on the continent are underpinned by four key pillars; to understand, operate, invest and respect Africa. He is on the Advisory Board of the Smithsonian National Museum of African Art, and was previously a trustee of the Royal National Theatre Foundation.

Professor Ricardo Soares de Oliveira

Appointed Member, Ex Officio

Ricardo Soares de Oliveira is Professor of the International Politics of Africa at the Department of Politics and International Relations, University of Oxford, a fellow of St Peter’s College, Oxford, and a fellow of the Global Public Policy Institute, Berlin. Ricardo is the author of Magnificent and Beggar Land: Angola Since the Civil War (2015) and Oil and Politics in the Gulf of Guinea (2007) and the co-editor of China Returns to Africa (2008). He is also co-editor of African Affairs.

Geetha Tharmaratnam

Elected Member


Geetha Tharmaratnam is the CEO and Founding Partner of Aequalitas Capital Partners. She is a Private Equity (PE) professional with 19+ years experience in Developing Markets PE, investing in Africa, impact investing and Global Insurance. Recently, as senior investment advisor to the UN Economic Commission for Africa, she developed a fund-of-funds to invest in female African Investors. Engaged in April 2019, the Africa Womens Leadership Fund launched in February 2020, with commitments from 3 African governments and several private investors. Previously Geetha was Partner - Africa & Global Head of Impact at LGT Impact. A member of Global Investment Committee, she was a deal partner with a focus on health, education, logistics, food & agriculture and financial services transactions in Sub-Saharan Africa. She worked in the global Portfolio Management team of the Abraaj Group, was head of Impact & ESG and was a founding member of the Global Health Fund, a billion dollar impact fund investing in Africa and Asia. As a principal at Aureos Capital, a preeminent Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) PE firm, she focused on group strategy and sustainable investing, developing the first PE sustainability index. Geetha was a founding member of the world’s first Base of the Pyramid Fund and Africa’s first dedicated health investment fund. She holds a BSc (Finance) from the University of Bridgeport, an MBA and MSc in Management Research from Oxford University (Private Equity as an instrument of development in Africa), is an Eisenhower Fellow and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts. Geetha is a VC investor in Africa with a portfolio ranging from health, Fintech, secure digital identification, data analytics to music.

Ola Uduku

Co-opted Member, Ex Officio

Ola Uduku is the President of the African Studies Association of the UK (ASAUK). She took up a Professorship in Architecture at the Manchester School of Architecture in 2017. Prior to this she was Reader in Architecture, and Dean International for Africa, at Edinburgh University. Her research specialisms are in the history of educational architecture in Africa, and the contemporary issues related to social infrastructure provision for minority communities in cities in the ‘West’ and ‘South’. She is currently engaged in developing postgraduate research and teaching links in architecture urbanism, heritage and conservation between West African Architecture schools and those in North West England. She has in the past published in the areas of African Architecture, African Diaspora Studies, Gated Communities, and environmental design teaching pedagogies.