James O.C. Jonah (1934-
) retired as under-secretary-general for political affairs
(1992-94) after more than three decades in the UN secretariat,
including as political adviser in the Office of the Secretary-General
(1970-79), assistant secretary-general for personnel services
(1979-82), of the Office for Field Operations and External
Activities (1982-87), and for special political questions
(1991-2). After leaving the UN, he became Sierra Leone’s
permanent representative to the UN (1996-98) and minister
of finance, development and economic planning (1998-2001).
He was born in Sierra Leone and educated at Lincoln University,
Boston University, Harvard Law School, and MIT. He is currently
a senior fellow at the Ralph Bunche Institute for International
Studies of The CUNY Graduate Center. His publications include
his autobiography, What Price the Survival of the United
Nations? Memoirs of a Veteran International Civil Servant.