The Founder

Agwu Ukiwe Okali is the Founder-Chairman of The Okali Seminal

Dr Okali
Ideas Foundation for Africa (OSIFA), a non-profit Foundation dedicated to fostering and facilitating a more effective participation of Africa in the world of ideas, with the aim thereby to end the continent’s mant state of “ideas-dependency”. Born in Nigeria, Okali holds a Bachelor of Laws (LL.B Honours) degree from the London School of Economics and Political Science, as well as a Master of Laws (LL.M) degree and a Doctor of Juridical Science (SJD) degree, both from Harvard Law School. Okali is a long-standing member of the Connecticut (USA) State Bar. After a stint as a corporate lawyer in the US private sector, Okali had a distinguished career at the United Nations where he began at the Office of Legal Affairs of the UN Secretariat Headquarters in New York and went on to serve, inter alia, as Deputy Head of the human settlements programme (UN Habitat) in Nairobi, Kenya. Okali attained, as Registrar of the United Nations International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, the rank of United Nations Assistant Secretary General, before taking early retirement from international service to pursue his personal interest in philosophy, social justice and advocacy writing. Among his achievements in service at the United Nations, Okali is especially proud of his pioneering idea of a restitutive/restorative justice principle applicable in the administration of international criminal justice. This essentially involves the integration of assistance to victims measures into the conventional “retributive” approach of punishing the culprit. Delivery of such assistance would be by way of special Trust Fund mechanisms. Key aspects of these ideas were incorporated into the set-up of the permanent International Criminal Court in 1998. Agwu Ukiwe Okali is married and has two children.