G5 Sahel Permanent Secretary
Political Leaders
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A Nigerien replaces another Nigerien at the head of the G5 Sahel Permanent Secretariat. Maman Sidikou was appointed on 6 February by the G5 Sahel leaders at their summit in Niamey. He succeeds Najim El Hadj Mohamed who has headed the institution for the past three years. A close ally of Nigerien President Mahamadou Issoufou, Sidikou has many years of international experience as a diplomat and politician. Prior to his current appointment, since 2015 he headed the UN Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUSCO). He also worked for the African Union as its special representative for Somalia and as head of the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM). Within Niger, Sidikou’s served as minister of foreign affairs and African integration (1997-99) and then became the director of the president’s cabinet. Until 2011, he occupied various positions in the development sector. He worked for the World Bank (United States), UNICEF (Afghanistan, Iraq, Jordan and Nigeria) and UK’s Save the Children (Rwanda, RDC). A journalist by training (Dakar, Paris, Montréal), Sidikou also holds a degree in political science (Madrid) and a PhD in education (United States).