The Activism Blog: Will Osori be returning to the board of OSIWA?

This just occurred to us yesterday as Ayisha Osori spoke about her experiences in the 2015 elections, where she first was with the People’s Democratic Party and then, over to the All Progressives Congress. She spoke at Enough is Enough Nigeria’s #PartyPolitics101 event.

She had an impressive career in her past as an activist, including as Chief Executive of the Nigerian Women’s Trust Fund.

She was also chairperson of the board at the Open Society Initiative West Africa (OSIWA). Apparently, she stepped down to run for office, handing over to Senegal’s El Hadj Sy. (Interesting side fact: Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, has also been chair.)

According to her Wikipedia page, She attended Harvard Kennedy School of Government. She is currently on the board of Open Society Initiative for West Africa. She was called to the bar in Nigeria in 1998 and to the bar in New York in 2010.

In 2013 she was an Eisenhower Fellow. She was invited to America and sent seven weeks meeting important organisations and the chair of the Eisenhower Fellowship, Collin Powell.

In 2014, she left the Peoples Democratic Party, for the All Progressives Congress.

In 2015 she was chosen to be one of 21 women who met for a conference at Harvard University Kennedy School of Government funded by Hunt Alternatives. The group included Fauzia Nasreen from Pakistan, Judy Thongori from Kenya and Olufunke Baruwa, Esther Ibanga and Hafsat Abiola also from Nigeria. Her work appears in SaharaReporters and NewsDiaryOnline.

So as she spoke yesterday it just randomly occurred to us: now that she’s run for office, why can’t she return to the board? There is something about the way civil society organizations run from politicians that is understandable but not altogether useful for the long term.

There are so few ‘good guys’, shouldn’t we be re-absorbing them into the fold if they are, at least not actively in politics?

It’s something to think about.

Oh, and by the way, someone should be updating her Wikipedia entry. Post 2015, it still shows her as sitting on the board.

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