Reporter, consultant on African issues
Three years as a correspondent for London’s fortnightly Africa Confidential based in Cairo, Tunis, Algiers, Paris, and London (2013-), writing on a wide range of countries. Reporting included award-winning series on Egypt’s $9.4bn. slush funds concealed from budgetary accounting under the administrations of Anwar el-Sadat to Abd el-Fattah el-Sisi; bad loans and restructuring of Tunisia’s state-owned banks after the fall of Ben Ali; a $1.1bn. Nigerian oil licence secretly awarded by an Abacha-era minister to himself and his associates under Goodluck Jonathan and subsequently under regulatory investigation in London, New York, Milan, and Abuja; and the regional saga over Ethiopia’s $4.8bn. Grand Renaissance Dam and Nile Basin hydro-politics. This followed studies at the London School of Economics, Columbia Law School, and Columbia Journalism School (2008-12), and fellowships at the Financial Times in London and Barron'sin New York (2012-13). In 2015, honours included a Citation from the Overseas Press Club of America for The Morton Frank Award for best international magazine business reporting, as well as nominations for the European Press Prize (Investigative Reporting), Foreign Press Association in London Award (Best Financial Story), Investigative Reporters & Editors U.S. (Investigative Reporting), and Transparency International. Contributed to Foreign Affairs, Le Monde diplomatique,Private Eye, Africa Report (Jeune Afrique), and London Review of Books blog, among others.
Separately two years (2015-) as a third-party expert retained by London-based risk consultancies to produce corporate investigations and business intelligence reports with briefs in all countries in the Maghreb and Horn of Africa, Egypt, and some Great Lakes, across sectors (telecommunications, central banking, financial institutions, oil & gas, electricity, ports, services, distribution & logistics, FMCG, agriculture). Major reports for an investor monitoring a multi-jurisdictional dispute over a stolen telecommunications licence tangled in factional military politics and intelligence to guide legal strategy for a party in an investor-state international arbitration. Also co-author of a forthcoming book chapter commissioned by the Center for International Development at Harvard/ESID, titled ‘Political Economy of Family-Led Sector in Crisis: Industrial Policy and Political Connections in the Egyptian Automotive Industry.’