Former Tanzanian President Jakaya Kikwete named as new Africa Food Prize Chair

Former President of Tanzania, H.E. Dr. Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete, has been announced as the new Chair of the Africa Food Prize (AFP) for 2023. In addition to this new position, he also serves as a board member for the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA), an organization committed to driving an agricultural transformation across the continent.

H.E. Kikwete’s appointment as the new Chair of the Africa Food Prize was welcomed by outgoing Chair, former Nigerian President H.E. Olusegun Obasanjo, who expressed his confidence in Dr. Kikwete’s ability to continue transforming Africa’s agriculture. During his tenure as Tanzania’s President, H.E. Kikwete led the implementation of ‘Kilimo Kwanza,’ an initiative that unlocked productivity and profitability for the country’s smallholder farmers. He also spearheaded the implementation of the Southern Agricultural Growth Corridor of Tanzania (SAGCOT), a public-private partnership aimed at unlocking more private sector investment in the country’s agricultural sector.

Through the Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete Foundation, H.E. Kikwete has continued to work collaboratively with farmers and researchers to develop initiatives and strategic interventions to increase yield and productivity in smallholder farming and agribusiness. In his role as an AGRA board member, he is well-positioned to contribute to the organization’s goals of ensuring a food-secure and prosperous Africa through the promotion of sustainable agricultural growth.

Dr. Kikwete’s appointment comes as the Africa Food Prize opens nominations for the 2023 award, which recognizes extraordinary women, men, and institutions whose contributions to African agriculture are forging a new era of sustainable food security and economic opportunity that elevates all Africans. Nestlé has partnered with the Africa Food Prize this year, contributing CHF 100,000 (equivalent to US$ 108,400) towards the main award and a special category focused on innovations that advance regenerative food systems.

The call for nominations will close on May 16, 2023, and winners will be selected by the Africa Food Prize committee and announced at the AGRF, Africa’s Food Systems Forum 2023, to be held in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, in September. With H.E. Kikwete at the helm of the Africa Food Prize and as an AGRA board member, Africa’s agricultural transformation is in good hands.

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