Dr. Sulemana Abudulai
Chairman, Board of Trustees
Dr. Sulemana Abudulai (Ghana) is the Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the ABN. He is also the Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Northern Development Authority (NDA) in Ghana. Dr. Abudulai has served on the Board of the ABN since 2009, rising to the Chairman since the last quarter of 2013. He also serves on the Boards of Ghana Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA), Regional Advisory Information and Network Systems (RAINS), Gaia Foundation, Transform Africa, UK and CODA International. Previously, he served on the board of Earth Lore Foundation. He is a field agent of the Steven Louis Foundation, besides a consultant working on various issues, including sustainable agricultural practices, biodiversity, youth empowerment, community and inclusive development.
He spent over 25 years working in the civil society sector on socio-economic development approaches. He is experienced working with various international NGOs such as the Action Aid, Action on Disability and Development, Gaia Foundation, Comic Relief, CAMFED, RAINS, and Transform Africa. Dr. Abudulai is a keen supporter of the Earth Jurisprudence (EJ) movement and Community Ecological Governance (CEG) processes in his homeland of Tamale, Northern Ghana.
He leads the Board of Trustees of ABN to ensure that ABN lives up to its statutory obligations and responsibilities. The Board supports the Secretariat from a distance but seldom close-up to develop policies and strategic plans; initiate and sustain funding for the programme; lead in forming partnerships and pursue an inclusive agenda. He leads the Board of Trustees to effectively leverage assistance ensuring effective project implementation, systems and procedures are adhered to and that the ‘health’ of the team is prioritized over everything else!
Dr. Abudulai holds a Ph.D. in Land Economy, MSc in Rural and Regional Resources Planning, and a BSc in Land Economy from Cambridge and Aberdeen Universities. His memorable experience was a ten-day trip to indigenous communities living along the tributaries of the Amazon River in Colombia! That trip helped him develop the right perspectives on what being a member of the Earth Community means!
Dr. Abudulai’s life philosophy is to give as much of himself to make the world a better place to live! He likes staying abreast with local and global trends in his areas of interest by reading a lot and interacting with others.
Treasurer, Board of Trustees
Bernard Kitonyi (Kenya), is passionate about community development programmes where he dedicated over 20 years to community development. His last engagement was as the Managing Director of Inades Formation Kenya, where he served for over 12 years. Before joining Inades, Bernard served as the programme manager of the Family Life Counselling Association of Kenya (FLCAK) for over two years and a Development Coordinator with the Catholic Diocese of Machakos for eight years, among other community engagements he was passionate about. After his ‘A’ levels, he taught for eight years as an untrained teacher in several secondary schools. He then studied Marriage and Family at Pontifical Lateran University, earning his Master of Science degree. In 1985, he initiated a youth programme in the Catholic Diocese of Machakos. By then, he was already involved in community work part-time.
Bernard served on various boards including being the Chairman of the Board of Governors in several secondary schools and as a member of the District Education Board in Machakos for nearly 10 years. He is a freelance Development Practitioner after his retirement from Inades Formation Kenya.
Ms. Euphrasia Shayo
Member, Board of Trustees
Ms. Euphrasia Shayo (Tanzania), is an Environmental Management expert with over 14 years in environmental conservation efforts. She is the Program Coordinator at Envirocare, a vibrant non-State actor focusing on Tanzania’s environmental management. Her efforts are to support rural, urban women, and marginalized groups such as people with disability and prisoners in accessing legal support, environmental awareness and action, food besides increasing their entrepreneurship skills.
Shayo firmly believes that the sustainability of environmental conservation efforts is in the hands of community members who depend on the environment for their livelihoods. Her commitment to the community is anchored on the knowledge that once the community members understand their relationship with the environment they live in, they will be part of its conservation and vice-versa. Hence, she is committed to ensuring that community members are at the center of conservation in all projects she develops and oversees. Shayo is also a co-chairperson and founder of Tanzania Young Women Environmental Conservation Group (TAYOWEC). This women-led, women-focused environmental management group empowers youths and people with disability in urban and semi-urban areas.
Shayo’s mantra is “An informed community is vital for the sustainability of conservation!”She says, that she is excited to be a board member of the ABN, where I will foster this belief and commitment by sharing my experiences and learning from others.
Shayo has published widely on gender, chemical management in Tanzania, lobbied the government on the policy formulation on chemicals in products in Tanzania, has attended various workshops on environmental conservation and management in Tanzania, Sweden, China, Netherlands, among others.
Shayo believes in work-life balance, ensuring that she devotes enough energy at work and has time for her family, community, and sometimes for leisure! She is passionate about community work; supports young girls interested in baking cakes. I love dancing, swimming and cooking. Shayo is a mother of 3!
Member, Board of Trustees
Sena Alouka (Togo), was the 2002 IUCN-Reuters award for best environmental journalism. He is the President of the Climate Change team at the Alliance for Food Sovereignty in Africa (AFSA) and board member of the African Biodiversity Network(ABN). He has founded the International Jeunes Volontaires pour l’environnement (Young Volunteers for the Environment), a PanAfrican NGO présent in 28 countries, the African Youth Network on Climate Change (AYICC), TUNZAFRIKA, a platform for youth engagement in development issues in Africa and a founding member of the African Rivers Network (ARN).
Sena has been at the forefront of the global environmental justice since 1999, after his graduation in African Literary and social science at Togo University and later a Sustainable Development Course at the Rennes University in France. He has been active in monitoring water and energy infrastructures, policies across the continent and organized a national multistakeholder dialogue around dams in Togo, pursuant to the UNEP-sponsored Dams and Development Project. He has undertaken several consultancy work for World Bank and UNDP around the nexus of water-energy and food security.
He currently serves on various committees around sustainable energy, REN21 among others. As a climate activist, he has attended the 15 climate COPs and offered assistance to African governments. Sena successfully set up the largest national SDG country alliance, the Togo SDG Working Group with over 900 organisations and has facilitated participation of the Togo CSO communities to various HLPF and SDG related events globally. He has coached over 1500 young people in the past 20 years and incubated several youth start-ups particularly in the energy and food sectors. Founding Member of the ANEW (African network of CSO on WASH), Sena serves as the Sanitation and Water for all (SWA) initiative country focal point.
As a Renewable energy Policy specialist, he coordinates the Clean Energy in Africa (CLENA) project, implemented in 17 countries, which aims at advocating for a pro-poor, sustainable production an efficient use of energy in Africa. For the past two years he has been supporting the Togo Ministries of agriculture and energy on the country’s process of Energy and Agroecology transitions. Sena was admitted as an ‘’Ashoka Fellow’’ in 2014. Since then, he has designed various programs aimed at supporting youth leadership and entrepreneurship in the environmental sector. Environmental journalist, he has run an impactful TV Program on several channels in Togo for 10 years.
Member, Board of Trustees
Born in the land of Africa, Cameroon, Mother Jah Evejah, from an early age, accompanied her parents on the farm as she had a passion for Nature. She left her country to study journalism in France. Her focus was on the Diaspora, forced or voluntary migration of the African people, their culture and identity reappropriation.
After two decades in Guadeloupe, the island of the Caribbean, with her husband, children and young volunteers, she joined the ancestral continent on April 15 April 1997, in Benin to reconnect and work in the rural sector. In collaboration with her husband, she established the Center for Experimentation and Valorization of Agroecology, Endogenous Sciences and Techniques (CEVASTE) on a 4-hectare land availed by the Benin State. In this place, a living laboratory of research based on a rich experience of 40 years is laid to teach women, men and young people through experience and examples about ecological, indigenous knowledge and practices to live in harmony with Nature.
Here, the love of protecting the environment and conserving cultural biodiversity is taught through theory and practicals. Also, a pan-African and ecological humanitarian primary school called Ecolojah is within this space. It is responsible for guiding the children on the principles of living in Harmony with Nature.
Through the partnership with the African Biodiversity Network (ABN), among other like-minded partners, CEVASTE implements various projects with indigenous communities using her innovative methodologies. The shared agroecological approaches help improve communities’ daily lives while contributing to food sovereignty, biodiversity restoration, and mitigating climate crises, conserving endogenous seeds and protecting and promoting cultural heritage.
Mere Jah serves on the ABN board and shapes the leaders’ opinion on agroecology while promoting tenets of living in Harmony with Nature in Benin through television shows in collaboration with the national media. She is a trained and practiced as a Journalist with national and international media.