Conference Chair
General Chikadibia Obiakor (Rtd)
Former UNDPKO Assistant Secretary General Military Affairs

Lt Gen Chikadibia Isaac Obiakor (Rtd) is a seasoned Military Diplomat and Administrator with excellent interpersonal skills and the ability to communicate concisely and articulately. He served the Nigerian Military meritoriously for 40 years retiring at the top of his profession. His last three appointments were Military Adviser, Assistant Secretary General Office of Military Affairs, United Nations Department of Peace Keeping Operations (UNDPKO), UN Headquarters New York, Force Commander United Nations Mission in Liberia (UNMIL) and General Officer Commanding, 2 Division, Nigerian Army. He is presently a Member Advisory Board, Peace Keeping Training Programme (PTP) United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR) and a Consultant to the Ministry of Defence (MOD), Nigeria. He is a recipient of several National Honours including Officer Order of the Federal Republic (OFR), National Productivity Order of Merit (NPOM) and the Grand Service Star (GSS). He is also a multiple recipient of United Nations (UN) service medals.

Keynote Speakers
H.E. Halima Ahmed
Commissioner for Political Affairs, Peace & Regional Security
ECOWAS Commission

Travis Heneveld (Panel Chair)
Director - United Nations & International Accounts
Motorola Solutions

As United Nations' Account Director, Travis Heneveld oversees the delivery of business critical communication solutions to peacekeeping, emergency response and development agencies worldwide. Prior to joining Motorola's Europe, Middle East and Africa Strategy team in 2003, Travis spent several years as a Strategy Consultant driving new product & marketing initiatives for Fortune 100 companies such as Levi's, United Airlines, IKEA and Ericsson. A global citizen with living experiences in Europe and Asia, Travis is currently based in Nairobi. He is a BA graduate of Pomona College and holds an International MBA from the University of South Carolina.
BG Usman Turay
Assistant Chief of Defence Staff PR/Infomation & Defence Spokesman
Ministry of Defence (MOD); Sierra Leone

Brig Gen Usman Turay is the Assistant Chief of Defence Staff and Public Relations, and Defence Spokesman. He holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Mathematics/Physics from the University of Sierra Leone and a Master of Arts degree in International Relations and Diplomacy from the University of Ghana, Legon. He was later commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in 1991 and went on to study Military Leadership and advanced Planning for Integrated Missions in Washington DC, USA and Bamako, Mali, respectively. Brig. Turay has since held many high-ranking positions, including: Platoon Commander, Intelligence Officer and Commanding Officer at the Armed Forces Education Centre in Freetown. He was also Commanding Officer for 2 and 5 Battalions in Kenema and Freetown respectively and Director of Public Relations and Information at the Ministry of Defence. In 2011 Brig Gen Turay was awarded the 50th Independence Medal.
Samir Himri
Reporting Officer,Peace & Security Department
African Union Commission (AUC)

Jacopo Carbonari
Project Manager – Immigration & Border Management (IBM)
International Organization for Migration (IOM)

Mr. Jacopo Carbonari (Italy) manages Immigration and Border Management (IBM) projects at IOM Côte d’Ivoire. Previously he worked for the International Organization for Migration (IOM) in Mali, Iraq and Egypt. He has extensive experience in providing technical assistance to relevant governmental authorities on migration and border management. Mr. Carbonari is fluent in Italian, English, French, Arabic and has a degree in Middle Eastern studies and a master degree in European affairs from the Paris Institute of Political Studies (Sciences Po).
Dr. Olamide Orekunrin
Flying Doctors Nigeria

Michael Gur Arie (Panel Chair)
Business Development & Sales Director
Magal Security Systems LTD

Dr. Moulaye Zeidane Batina
Legal Advisor,Permanent Secretariat
G5 Sahel Joint Task Force

Yves Abadinan Kouassi
Regional Specialized Officer
INTERPOL Regional Bureau for West Africa

Mr. Yves Abadinan KOUASSI has been working as a Regional Specialized Officer in charge of counterterrorism at the INTERPOL Regional Bureau For West Africa based in Abidjan, since 2006. As an assistant Commissioner of Police, Mr. KOUASSI completed a master’s degree in Adult Education in Birmingham, England in 1993. During his career, he worked at the Ivorian training college for Education before joining the Police. As chief Superintendent of Police, Mr. KOUASSI worked at the Ivorian CID for 6 years, in charge of international police investigations at the INTERPOL National Central Bureau in Abidjan. Right now, he is in charge of trainings on international police cooperation and counter terrorism matters. International organizations such as UNODC, ECOWAS, ISS often call for his experience in trainings on international peace and security issues Mr. KOUASSI has published two manuals on: The Understanding of the phenomenon of terrorism in West Africa, and Easing International police cooperation with INTERPOL Police capacities.
Solomon Caulker
Director, Serious Organised Crime Coordination
Office of National Security (ONS); Sierra Leone

Solomon Caulker has served within Sierra Leone's Office of National Security (ONS) since 2004, first starting as a Desk Officer for Economic Security, then Organised Crime in the Joint Assessment Team. He was appointed to Head the newly created Serious Organised Crime Coordination Directorate at the ONS in 2006. As a Senior Security Analyst, his areas of competence lie within policy analysis, intelligence analysis, security assessment, and strategic coordination. Mr. Caulker has also served as Executive Secretary of the Transnational Organised Crime Unit (TOCU), Chair of the Integrated intelligence Group (IIG), and Secretary of the Strategic Situation Group (SSG).
CDR (R) Jean Eric Vague (Panel Chair)
Naval & Maritime Specialist,Operational Marketing
Airbus Helicopters

Commander (Retired) Jean-Eric Vague is the Naval & Maritime missions’ specialist for Airbus Helicopters’ marketing department. A graduate of the French Naval Academy, he is a former operational Navy pilot, Airline Transport Pilot (Helicopter) and also an Experimental Test Pilot for rotary winged aircraft. He has flown more than 40 aircraft types during the past 30 years. He spent 5 years within the Support & Services department of Airbus building relationships with customers and today acts as the operational and technical advisor for naval missions.
Djoro Hyacinthe Gnepa
Head of the Centre
Maritime Rescue Coordination Centre (MRCC)/Maritime Authority

Mr. Gnepa has been working in Maritime Administration since 1995 (22 years) and for the last 7 years, he has headed the Abidjan MRCC. He graduated Master in Maritime Affairs, specialization Maritime Safety and Environmental Administration from World Maritime University (Malmo/Sweden) in 2016. Mr. Gnepa also received a Diploma in Maritime Affairs from the National School of Administration (Abidjan), and has been granted safety certificates from Maritime Institutes in Italy, Belgium and Brazil. He has been active in maritime safety and radio communication for over 10 years and has been a frequent head of delegation to Communication and Search and Rescue meetings in London. Mr. Gnepa’s international experience includes consultancy for Maritime Organization for West and Central Africa (MOWCA), and the West Africa Economic and Monetary Union - he is the national focal point on the LRIT system. Mr. Gnepa’s current tasks involve the monitoring of the maritime traffic, management and dissemination of Maritime Safety & Security Information, and Search & Rescue Coordination.
Col. Mariko Mamadou
Technical Director
Maritime Organisation for the West & Central Africa (MOWCA)

Colonel Mariko Mamadou currently serves as Technical Director within the Maritime Organisation of West and Central Africa (MOWCA). He graduated from the World Maritime University of Malmö (Sweden) and from the Maritime Administration School of Bordeaux (France), with additional training in Port Management (Antwerp, Belgium), Coast Guard Management (Seoul, Korea), and Trainer of Maritime Labour Inspectors (Torino, Italy). Colonel Mamadou has also served as Director of Seafarers and Maritime Cooperation Division within the Ministry of Transport, Cote d’Ivoire (2004 to 2011) before joining MOWCA. As Technical Director, Colonel Mamadou duties include monitoring MOWCA’s major projects, including the sub-regional coast guard function network, the Information and Communication Center, the Regional Maritime Code, the Regional Maritime Fund, and the development of Cabotage regime.
CDR David Dye
Special Projects Officer,African Engagement (N52)
U.S. Naval Forces Europe, Naval Forces Africa, U.S. Sixth Fleet

Commander David Dye hails from Reston, Virginia and received his 1994 naval commission and undergraduate degree via the NROTC program at Jacksonville University, Florida. After initial Surface Warfare Officer (SWO) training, CDR Dye reported to USS ARTHUR W RADFORD (DD 968) as the Main Propulsion Assistant and subsequently Anti-Submarine Warfare Officer, and qualified as a Surface Warfare Officer (SWO). He then served aboard USS GEORGE WASHINGTON (CVN 73) in the Combat System department as the Communications Maintenance Officer. CDR Dye was selected to attend the Naval Post-graduate School (NPS) in Monterey, California and completed a degree in Undersea Warfare. He next reported to USS KLAKRING (FFG 42) as the Chief Engineer, followed by assignment to Destroyer Squadron TWO as the Material Officer.

In 2005, CDR Dye reported to the Surface Warfare Development Group (SWDG) and oversaw the Mine Warfare Readiness and Effectiveness Measuring (MIREM) Program. He then reported to USS BATAAN (LHD 5) for duty as the Damage Control Assistant (DCA). CDR Dye was then assigned to US Central Command from February 2010 until February 2012 in the Current Operations Branch. While initially serving as Joint Operations Center Team Chief at CENTCOM he led several Special Projects. CDR David Dye was assigned to Navy Region Europe, Africa, Southwest Asia (EURAFSWA) from March 2012 to June 2015, serving as both the Director of Operations and the Executive Assistant to the Commander, Navy Region EURAFSWA. In 2015 he was assigned to U.S SIXTH Fleet as the Director of the Fleet Command Center and subsequently the Africa Engagement Directorate.
John Neumann (Panel Chair)
Senior Regional Sales Director
Codan Radio Communications

Mr. Neumann is responsible for global HF and C2 solution sales / BD for Codan Radio Communications. Prior to joining Codan Radio, he was VP of International Sales / BD for two companies specializing in micro-grid power solution, flex-fuel, solar power, and emergent technologies. In addition, he was Regional Sales Director for a US based company that specialized in tactical communication equipment and small tactical unmanned aircraft. Mr. Neumann is a retired Colonel, USMC.
Jean Francois Milhaud
Hub Manager UNHRD Accra
UN Humanitarian Response Depot (UNHRD) WFP

A former engineer, Jean François Milhaud worked as a Technical Director in the early 1990s for a company based in Africa. During the Rwandan war, he made a career shift to the humanitarian world, and worked in Africa and Asia for international NGOs as a Logistics Officer and Fleet Manager. He has also been a Humanitarian Logistics Trainer at Bioforce Institute in Lyon, France. Jean-François joined the WFP in 2007 and acted as a Global Fleet Manager until 2014. He was in charge of the global logistics truck fleet management at WFP, with responsibility for overseeing and monitoring 700 trucks in its logistics department. He was also in charge of the systems and tools related to fleet management, in particular FMS, and was involved in guideline implementations, best practices, and cost efficiency of WFP fleets, including acquisition, evaluation, deployment of fleets, technical support, and training. In 2014 Jean-François was re-assigned to the position of Hub Manager at the United Nation’s Humanitarian Response Depot in Accra, Ghana. Shortly after taking up the position Jean-François oversaw the coordinated response to the outbreak of the Ebola Emergency. Since the deactivation of the Ebola Emergency Jean-François has successfully overseen the enhancement of UNHRD Accra’s operational performance through the implementation of different projects including the Hub Optimisation which saw a barcoding system being introduced to the Accra depot as well as the implementation of Long Term Agreements with the private sector improving the network’s emergency response in Western Africa.
Lt Col François Pascal
Senior Security & Safety Adviser
African Development Bank (AfDB)

Lieutenant Colonel (ret.) François PASCAL is currently a Senior Security Advisor for the African Development Bank. Since 2009, he is mostly involved in the security posture of the 34 Field Offices deployed in Africa to protect AfDB’s people, property, information, and reputation. Senior Investigator in the Investigations Division of the Office of Oversight Services of the United Nations Secretariat from 2001 to 2006, he was involved in high-risk investigations in war torn areas as well as in other high-profile violations and fraud in the Organization. Private consultant from 1999 to 2001 he was specialized in country risk analysis for Africa and the Middle East. Intelligence Analyst on loan from the French government to the UN from 1994 to 1999, he was posted at the Information & Research Unit of the Situation Center in the Department of Peace Keeping Operations due also to a solid background on UN military observation, electoral assistance and peacekeeping operations in Africa (Egypt, Somalia, Rwanda); Middle East (Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, Israel, Occupied Territories); and Caribbean states (Haiti). Retired senior officer formerly from the French "Troupes de Marine", he has mostly spent his career abroad in overseas assignments whether in combat operations or advisory tasking.
Caterina De Bianchi
Procurement Officer,Policy & Compliance Monitoring Section
UN Procurement Division (UNPD)

Ms. Caterina De Bianchi is a Procurement Officer in the Policy and Compliance Monitoring Section of the Procurement Division of the United Nations Secretariat. Caterina, an Italian national, has worked in procurement and other mission support functions, both at UN Headquarters as well as in peacekeeping and special political missions. Prior to joining the United Nations in 2001, Caterina worked in the private sector in Italy and Switzerland. She has an Advanced Degree in Business Administration from Universita' Bocconi in Milan, and a Diploma in Procurement and Supply from the Chartered Institute of Purchasing & Supply. She is a Prince2® registered practitioner, and has an Executive Certificate in Technology, Operations and Value Chain Management from MIT in Cambridge.
Denis Sidyane
Regional Procurement Officer
UN World Food Programme (WFP)

Denis Sidyane is a 39 year old national form Burkina Faso, holding a Masters degree in Economics and Management who joined WFP in 2011 as a Procurement Officer with the Regional Procurement Unit. Since 2013, Denis became the Deputy Regional Procurement Officer at WFP's Regional Office for West and Central Africa based in Dakar. The regional office provides advice and support to over 20 country offices in West Africa in the procurement of Food, goods and services. Denis is a specialist in WFP corporate procedures including Word Bank and Regional Development Bank public procurement procedure, with a UNDP CIPS IV Certificate.
Penny Sterley (Panel Chair)
Head of CDS,Corporate - Direct & Special Sales

Penny Sterleys responsibilities include establishing effective working relationships with partners and channels in order to drive success. Channels include Corporate Sales, Car Rental sales, Government tenders, Public sector development, Government subsidy scheme, Hotel and Shuttle service vehicle sales, Diplomatic vehicle sales to individual’s and Consulates, VIP sales, Supplier sales and International clients. Penny is responsible for the security vehicle strategy for BMW Group for sales into Africa. Penny has a background of over 15 years in the automotive industry. She started her career in the financial services sector finding financial solutions for Automotive funding. Penny completed her Bachelor of Business Administration degree through Southern Business School.
Papa Malick Diaw
Delegate to the Military & Armed Groups
International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC)

Papa Malick Diaw joined the ICRC as a delegate to the military and armed groups in May 2015, based in Abidjan, Cote d'Ivoire and covering 13 countries in West Africa. Mr. Diaw is from Senegal and served in the Senegalese Army for 36 years, retiring in March 2014 as a full Colonel. He has also served within three UN Missions: one during the Iraq-Iran war of 1991, and twice in Kisangani of the Congo (DRC) during 2004 and 2008.
BG Mainasara Abdul Masanawa
Deputy Director Equipment Procurement,Nigerian Armed Forces
Ministry of Defence; Nigeria

Davor Jurisic (Panel Chair)
Director of Business Development ,Business Development
EFS Ebrex Sarl

Davor Jurisic is a Senior Business Executive with 21 years of international experience in US Government and NATO/NSPA contracts, UN Contracts, Logistics & Supply Chain, Oil and Gas, Aviation and Ground Handling, Energy, Defense Government and Commercial contracts arena, and has worked and operated in Europe, Middle East,Asia and Africa since 1996. Davor joined EFS Ebrex team in December 2016, holding a Bachelor Degree in Economics, Marketing and International trade, and is working towards his MBA degree.
Dr. Chukwuemeka Benedict Eze
Executive Director
West Africa Network for Peacebuilding (WANEP)

Dr. Chukwuemeka B. Eze is the Executive Director of West Africa Network for Peacebuilding. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science and Master’s and Doctorate Degrees in Peace and Strategic Studies with bias in Conflict Early Warning Systems. Between November 2016 and May 2017, he served as Senior Adviser on Mediation and Political Dialogue to the Special Representative of the UN Secretary General in Guinea Bissau. Eze has 20 years’ experience in peacebuilding, political dialogue, early warning and conflict assessment. Eze is pioneer Deputy Registrar and Fellow of the Institute for Chartered Mediators and Conciliators, Fellow of the Society for Peace Studies and Practice (SPSP), and Fellow of the Danish Fellowship program in Copenhagen Denmark. He teaches peacebuilding practice at University of Utah in USA, Kofi Anna International Peacekeeping Training Centre and West Africa Peacebuilding Institute and has several journals, articles and books to his credit.
Dr. Jimam T. Lar
African Peacebuilding Network (APN)

Jimam Lar read History at the University of Jos, and also holds an MA, in Conflict, Security and Development from King’s College London. He completed his Doctorate in African History and Politics, at the University of Bayreuth, Germany in November 2015. Jimam is Lecturer in History, at the University of Jos, Nigeria; he has done extensive research on the history of plural policing, violence, conflict management and peacebuilding in Nigeria, the history of regional conflict prevention and management and transnational security and mobility in West Africa. Dr. Lar was Merit Beneficiary, African Peacebuilding Network, (APN), Social Science Research Council of New York, Individual Grant Recipient 2016. He is currently African Humanities Program (AHP) Postdoctoral Research Fellow, 2017. Dr. Lar has published journal articles and chapters in edited volumes. Jimam’s current research engagement is focused on exploring the role of local actors and the dynamics of trans-border security and mobility on the Nigerian-Nigerien borderlands.