Nigerian emerges VP of global NGO executive committee in New York




A Nigerian, Mr. Uwem Robert OTU has been elected as Vice President of the Global NGO Executive Committee (GNEC) at the United Nations Headquarters in New York, USA.

Mr. Uwem Robert OTU is the first African elected as vice President of the organisation since its creation in 1962.

The Global NGO Executive Committee (GNEC) was founded in 1962 to promote a closer working relationship between the United Nations (UN) and the non-governmental organizations (NGOs) associated with it. GNEC acts as a liaison between the NGO community and the UN’s Department of Global Communications (DGC). GNEC provides strategic guidance to help NGOs become more effective partners of the UN.

The Global NGO Executive Committee (GNEC) is a storied nonprofit that has, for 60 years, partnered with the United Nations to guarantee a voice at the decision-making table for civil society leaders. And that role has never been more critical, as the world battles a global pandemic and a planet-threatening climate crisis, among other challenges. GNEC serves 1,500+ UN-vetted global NGOs, which are on the frontlines of tackling these and others of the most pressing issues of our time. GNEC provides support for these purpose-driven organizations in their efforts to make sure no one on the planet is left behind.

Prior to his election, Mr. OTU has worked with international organisations to attract Foreign Direct Investment into Nigeria. He midwifed the entry of Irish Dairy Milk into Nigeria in 2019 to support the backward integration on dairy production initiated by the Central Bank of Nigeria.

He was the Campaign Director of Stockholm Junior Water Prize Competition in Nigeria (2017-2019) and in August 2018 facilitated Nigeria’s participation as Head of delegation to the Stockholm Junior Water Prize in Stockholm, Sweden.

Mr. OTU was appointed into the Collaboration Committee of Civil Society Organisations for the United Nations Development System Review process convened by the United Nations Secretary General in October 2017. He was also elected a Director of the Global NGO Executive Committee at the United Nations Headquarters in New York on August 01 2016. He was reelected for a second term in 2018.

Uwem Robert OTU was engaged as the Pioneer Country Chair, Global Network for Disaster Risk Reduction- an implementing centre of the United Nations International Strategy for Disaster Reduction. He is the founding President, African Youth Movement (AYM) which is an NGO in Special Consultative status with the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations and he serves as Principal Adviser and Representative to the United Nations of the African Youth Movement.

Uwem Robert OTU is active on United Nations issues having addressed the United Nations twice at the 58th Annual UNNGO Summit at the United Nations Headquarters New York in 2005 and at the 65th Annual UNNGO Summit at the United Nations Headquarters, New York in 2014. He was the elected representative of the United Nations Global Youth Forum (GYF) in Copenhagen, Denmark in 2002 and represented the Global Youth Forum at the Heads of Government high level meeting during the World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD) in Johannesburg, South Africa. He is the pioneer Speaker of the Students’ Union Government, University of Uyo.

Speaking to reporters after his election, Mr. OTU said his election was particularly relevant as Nigerians look ahead to the 2023 election season. He has advocated for a national mobilization of civil society in the electoral space to eliminate rigging, violence to ensure transparency and make every single vote count. This is a task that must be accomplished as he commended INEC for the steps taken to ensure transparency in the Ekiti and Osun elections.

He applauded efforts by other civil society groups such as the Global Harmony Envoy International Initiative (GHEII) led by Rita Oyoku on their work to stem the rising tide of migration and called on more civil society groups to join his team in working towards the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in Nigeria.

Related content you may like