Obiageli Ezekwesili is a Nigerian chartered accountant. She holds a Master's degree in International Law and Diplomacy from the University of Lagos, as well as a Master of Public Administration degree from the Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University.
She trained with the firm of Deloitte and Touche and qualified as a chartered accountant. Ezekwesili started off in the Olusegun Obasanjo administration as the Pioneer head of the Budget Monitoring and Price Intelligence Unit (a.k.a Due Process Unit). She was the architect of the Bureau for Public Procurement legislation, the NEITI legislation and the new Minerals and Mining legislation during her six and a half years stint in government.
In June 2006, Ezekwesili was appointed the Federal Minister of Education. On May 1 2007, World Bank President Paul Wolfowitz announced the appointment of Ezekwesili as Vice-President for the Africa Region. During this period, she successfully completed her stint as the World Bank Vice-President Africa Division, a position to which she was appointed in 2007.
As vice-president she was in charge of the bank's operations in 48 countries in Sub-Saharan Africa and supervised a lending portfolio of over $40 billion.
She was a co-founder of Transparency International and served as one of its pioneer directors. As a senior economic advisor for Open Society, a group founded by billionaire George Soros, she advises nine reform-committed African heads of state including Paul Kagame of Rwanda and Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf of Liberia.
In May 2012, Ezekwesili was awarded an honorary Doctor of Science (DSC) degree by the University of Agriculture, Abeokuta in Nigeria.
In the aftermath of the nearly 300 mainly Christian girls were abducted from Chibok by the Islamist militant group Boko Haram.
Ezekwesili was instrumental to the start of the viral #BringBackOurGirls campaign on social media, which trended internationally. The campaign received worldwide support from personalities such as Michelle Obama, Usher Raymond, Alicia Keys amongst others.