Kandeh Kolleh Yumkella, a Sierra Leonean agricultural economist and politician, has resigned from the leadership of the National Grand Coalition (NGC) party, effective immediately. He tendered his resignation via letter to the members and supporters of the party. Yumkella expressed mixed emotions about his decision, which marks a significant development in Sierra Leonean politics. He emphasized his unwavering commitment to the party’s core values and outlined its original vision, which sought to promote unity, diversity, and national pride in pursuit of a prosperous Sierra Leone. Yumkella’s resignation has left a void in the NGC’s leadership, and it will be interesting to see how the party navigates this transition and the impact it will have on Sierra Leonean politics.
Kandeh Kolleh Yumkella was born on July 5, 1959, in the rural village of Kychom, Samu Chiefdom, Kambia District in the Northern Province of Sierra Leone. He is a former United Nations Under-Secretary-General and the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Sustainable Energy for All. He was also the chief executive officer of the Sustainable Energy for All Initiative. Yumkella is a former Chairman of UN-Energy and a two-term former Director-General of the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO).
Yumkella has a B.Sc. from Njala University; a M.Sc. from Cornell University; and a Ph.D. in Agricultural economics from the University of Illinois. In recognition of his leadership and his passion for energy and environment-related causes, Yumkella was appointed as Chair of UN-Energy in 2008 by the UN Secretary-General.
Yumkella is a prominent public speaker who addresses global issues, including poverty reduction, climate change, green industry, renewable energy, and more. Dr. Yumkella’s opinion pieces have appeared in major international newspapers such as The New York Times, The International Herald Tribune, and The Guardian 2. He has also appeared on several international broadcast networks such as CNN’s Amanpour program, BBC, Sky News, Aljazeera, and CNBC .
Yumkella is married to Philomena Yumkella and is a devout Muslim who belongs to the Susu ethnic group 2.