Dr. John ’Kayode Fayemi was born in Ibadan, Oyo State on February 9, 1965. He was Governor of Ekiti State from October 2010 to October 2014. Prior to assuming the office of Governor in Ekiti State, Dr Fayemi was Director of the Centre for Democracy & Development, a research and training institution dedicated to the study and promotion of democratic development, peace-building and human security in Africa. Dr Fayemi attended Christ’s School, Ado Ekiti for his secondary education, Federal School of Arts and Science, Ondo for his Higher School Certificate and received degrees in History, Politics and International Relations from the Universities of Lagos and Ife in Nigeria and his Doctorate in War Studies from King’s College, University of London, England, specializing in civil-military relations.
Prior to heading the Centre for Democracy & Development, Dr. Fayemi worked as a lecturer, journalist, researcher and Strategy Development adviser in Nigeria and the United Kingdom. He was Strategy Development Adviser at London’s City Challenge; research fellow at the African Research & Information Bureau in London, UK, reporter with the newspapers, The Guardian and City Tempo, editor of the political monthly, Nigeria-Now, management consultant at Development and Management Consultants. He did his national service as a lecturer at the Police College in Sokoto, Nigeria. As a prominent leader of the Nigerian opposition to military rule in exile, he was responsible for the founding and management of the opposition radios – Radio Freedom, Radio Democracy International & Radio Kudirat and played a central role in the opposition’s diplomatic engagements in exile.
Amongst his numerous academic and public policy engagements at home and abroad, Dr. Fayemi served as an adviser on transitional justice, regional integration, constitutionalism, security sector reform and civil-military relations issues to the Governments of Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Liberia, Uganda, Rwanda and Ghana. He was the main technical adviser to Nigeria’s Human Rights Violations Investigation Commission (Oputa Panel), which investigated past abuses and also served on the Presidential Implementation Committees on Security Sector Reform, on NEPAD and on the Millennium Development Goals during the Obasanjo administration. He was technical expert to ECOWAS on small arms and light weapons and to the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa on governance issues. He was also a member, Africa Policy Advisory Panel of the British Government. At other times he has served as a consultant to the OECD on Security Sector Reform and chaired the Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative’s Committee of Experts on developing guiding principles and mechanisms of constitution making in Commonwealth Africa.
Dr. Fayemi is a Visiting Scholar in the Political Science Department, University of Ibadan and Fellow of the Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies, University of Ibadan. He was an Adjunct Professor of Security Studies at the African Centre for Strategic Studies, National Defense University, USA and a Scholar-in-Residence in the African Studies Programme at Northwestern University, Evanston, USA in 2004. Dr. Fayemi has served on numerous Boards including the Governing Board of the Open Society Justice Institute, Baobab for Women’s Human Rights, African Security Sector Network, and on the Advisory Board of the Global Facilitation Network on Security Sector Reform and on the Management Culture Board of the ECOWAS Secretariat. Dr Fayemi has written extensively on governance and democratisation, civil-military relations and security sector issues in Africa. Amongst his books are: Mercenaries: The African Security Dilemma (edited with Abdel-Fatau Musah – Pluto Press, 2000); Deepening the Culture of Constitutionalism: The Role of Regional Institutions in Constitutional Development in Africa (CDD, 2003), Security Sector Governance in Africa: A Handbook (edited with Nicole Ball, CDD, 2004) and Out of the Shadows: Exile and the Struggle for Freedom and Democracy in Nigeria (CDD & BookCraft, 2005); Reclaiming the Trust (Amandla, 2012), Regaining the Legacy (Amandla, 2013) and Legacy of Honour and Service (Amandla, 2014).