|Birth||1 January 1956|
Professor Julius O. Ihonvbere, OON, OGI
Julius O. Ihonvbere was born in Oyo in the old Western Region. He attended CMS Primary School in Oyo, St. John’s CAC School, Warri, and Edo Boys High School in Ugbowo, Benin City where he obtained the West African School Certificate. He took his B.A. Combined Honors degree in History and Political Science from the University of Ife (now Obafemi Awolowo University), Ile-Ife, Nigeria.
He obtained his MA in International Affairs and Ph.D. in Political Science from Carleton University Ottawa and the University of Toronto respectively. He then proceeded to teach at the University of Ife, Ogun State University and University of Port Harcourt all in Nigeria. He was forced into self-exile in 1990 and returned to the University of Toronto as Visiting Professor of African Politics. In 1991 he moved to the University of Texas at Austin where he taught African and Third World Politics as well as courses on US-Africa Relations. In 1997, he joined the Ford Foundation in New York as Program Officer in the Peace and Social Justice Program and was responsible for the portfolio on “Pluralism and Governance” until 2002 when he voluntarily withdrew his services to return to Nigeria.
As a student he was Sanitary and Health Prefect at Edo Boys High School, Benin City and later Public Relations Officer of the University of Ife Student’s Union. His meritorious services earned him several awards including a life membership of the Students’ Union. When he returned to Ife as a Lecturer in International Relations he became Secretary of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU).
At the University of Port Harcourt, he served first as Vice-Chairman and later as Chairman of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU). He also served as Head of the Department of Political and Administrative Studies at the University of Port Harcourt and President of the Senior Staff Club. He was adviser to the Student’s Union Government of the University of Port Harcourt for several years.
His research interests are in state-civil society relations, constitutionalism, demilitarization, democratization, globalization, and human rights in the developing world with special interest in Africa. An activist scholar, Professor Ihonvbere was very active in the foreign-based opposition struggles against military rule in Nigeria. He was a well-known voice in the opposition Radio: The Voice of Democracy (Alias Radio Kudirat International). He was Founding President of the Organization of Nigerians in the Americas (ONA) and co-coordinator of the Global Network of Nigerian Organizations (GNNO). He is the current Vice-Chair of the United Democratic Front of Nigeria (UDFN) – a coalition of pro-democracy, nationality, and human rights groups in North America and Europe with Professor Wole Soyinka as Chairman. He was in the executive of the Joint Action Committee on Nigeria (JACON) that brought together the opposition groups in exile.
Professor Ihonvbere is a recipient of numerous national and international honours and awards. He is member, Nigeria Development Forum (NDF), and holds the National Honour of Order of the Officer of the Niger (OON). The University of Ife Alumni Association has also honoured him with the Order of Great Ife (OGI). He has numerous honors, awards and recognitions from the world over. The Association of Third World Studies also honoured him with the First Mario Zamora Memorial Award for academic excellence.
He is an Honorary Fellow of the Institute of Administrative Management of Nigeria and listed in Who is Who in Nigeria as well as in the Profiles of African Scientists. In 2007, he was bestowed with the Edo Man of the Year award by the Ivory Tower Organisation in Edo State for his “unusually brilliant, tolerant, inclusive and vibrant political style and capacity to mobilize people.” He is Patron of the Association of Community Newspapers Publishers Edo State, a Paul Harris Fellow of the Rotary Club International and an Ambassador of Peace.
Professor Ihonvbere has been described by the African Centre for Democratic Governance (AFRIGOV) as “the most widely published academic of last century.” His recent articles have appeared in numerous international journals including Africa Today, The Journal of Modern African Studies, International Politics, International Journal, Third World Quarterly, World Development, and The Journal of Political and Military Sociology.
In sum, Professor Ihonvbere has published 12 Authored/co-authored/co-edited ACADEMIC books; 9 full monographs; 79 refereed academic papers; 46 book chapters; 20 commentaries and 190 research/conference papers.
Professor Ihonvbere’s authored, co-authored or edited books include:
Political Liberalisation and Democratisation in Africa: Lessons from Country Experiences (co-edited with John Mbaku) (2003)
Africa and the New World Order (2000);
Towards a New Constitutionalism in Africa (2000);
Labor, State and Capital in Nigeria’s Oil Industry (1999);
The Illusions of Power: Nigeria in Transition (with Timothy Shaw) (1998);
Multiparty Democracy and Political Change: Constraints to Democratization in Africa (Co-edited with John Mbaku) (1998);
Nigeria: The Politics of Adjustment and Democracy (1994);
Economic Crisis, Civil Society and Democratization: The Case of Zambia (1996);
The Rise and Fall of Nigeria’s Second Republic (with Toyin Falola);
Political Economy of Crisis and Underdevelopment in Africa: Selected Works of Claude Ake (edited) 1989;
Towards a Political Economy of Nigeria: Petroleum and Politics at the (Semi-) Periphery (co-authored with Timothy Shaw). 1988;
Nigeria and the International Capitalist System (co-edited with Toyin Falola) 1988
Pfoessor Julius Ihonvbere has other forthcoming books including:
The Challenge of Leadership in Nigeria
Swimming Upstream: The Reality of Playing Practical Politics in Nigeria
Professor Ihonvbere holds several traditional titles from different parts of Nigeria including Irialugie of Auchi Kingdom; Ogieanor of Uzuaire and the Iyase (traditional Prime Minister) of Iuleha in Owan West Local Government Area of Edo State.
Professor Ihonvbere has served as:
Special Adviser to the President on Policy and Programmes Monitoring
Speech Writer to the President of Nigeria
Member, Niger Delta Technical Committee
Member of the Council of Adekunle Ajasin University
Chairman, Finance/Fundraising Committee of the First Nigeria-China Trade and Investment Forum
Nigeria’s Representative to the International Board, Forum of Federations with HQ in Ottawa, Canada
Member Vision 202020 National Technical Working Group (Political System Thematic Area)
Chairman of the International Board, CHESTRAD based in the UK and Nigeria
Chairman of the Board, Institute for Corporate and Business Affairs and Management, Lagos
Board Member, Institute for New Leadership
Chairman, Ihonvbere Foundation, and President, Greentree Consultants based in Abuja.
Chairman, Ihonvbere Farms Limited
Chairman, Hastings Global Services Limited
Among numerous local, state, national and international responsibilities.
Ihonvbere initially resigned as the Secretary to Edo State Government (SSG) after the deeply flawed Edo North APC Senatorial Primaries, but the Edo State government prevailed on him to return as the SSG after state workers and national leaders decried the leadership vacuum created by his sudden exit..
^ “Urhobotimes.com”. www.urhobotimes.com. Retrieved 2015-12-11.
^ Adibe, Simon. “Ihonvbere Resigns as Edo SSG”. Thisday. Retrieved 10 Dec 2014.
^ Onoiribholo, Francis. “Women group endorses Ihonvbere for Senate”. Daily Independent. Retrieved 10 April 2014.