Ex-CBN gov seeking to be Nigeria’s ‘shining light’ in politics

When one has earned a PhD from a renowned school, lectured at some respected universities globally, served as a diplomat in various international organisations and was appointed as the deputy head of his or her country’s apex bank, such a person may just be content with taking the back seat and enjoying life to the fullest. Well, Kingsley Moghalu is not that person.

Despite having enjoyed a meritorious career, this top-tier economist seems not to be content with what he has achieved. He has dabbled his hands into the murky water of Nigerian politics, hoping to make a difference in the political space and be a different breed to the crop of present politicians. His adventure has been so far, so…

So, who is Kingsley Moghalu, the scholar and diplomat, continuously hoping to run the rule over Nigerian politics and call the shots in Nigeria?

Kingsley Moghalu Biography

Kingsley Moghalu talking

Kingsley ChieduMoghalu was born on May 7, 1963, in Lagos to Vidah and Isaac Moghalu. The early years of the young Moghalu’s life were spent in Washington, DC, and Switzerland, where his father was stationed as a diplomat. As the nation was being shaken by a political and humanitarian crisis, Issac Moghalu transferred his duty back to the Eastern Region of Nigeria, and the family returned to Nigeria in April 1967. Moghalu and his family resided in his hometown of Nnewi, Anambra State, as well as Umuahia, the short-lived Republic of Biafra‘s capital (now in present-day Abia State), throughout the Nigerian Civil War (1967-1970).

Kingsley began his secondary education in the 1970s at Eziama High School in Aba, Government College in Umuahia, before completing it at Federal Government College, Enugu. He graduated with a law degree from the University of Nigeria in 1986 and was called to the bar after attending the Nigerian Law School in Lagos.

Moghalu received his master’s degree from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, Tufts University, in 1992. He was a Joan Gillespie Fellow and Research Assistant in the International Political Economy Program at the same university. In 2005, Moghalu completed his doctoral studies in International Relations at the London School of Economics and Political Science. His dissertation is entitled: “Justice as Policy and Strategy: A Study of the Tension Between Political and Judicial Responses to Violations of International Humanitarian Law.” He also holds an International Certificate in Risk Management from the Institute for Risk Management, London.

At the International Monetary Fund Institute, Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government, Harvard Business School, and the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School, he received advanced executive education in macroeconomics and financial sector management, corporate governance, and global strategic leadership, respectively.

ALSO READ: Biodun Oyebanji: The political scientist who was elected governor


Moghalu shaking hands with Kofi Annan former UN secretary general

The mogul came to the international limelight in 1992 when he joined the United Nations. His first assignment at the international organisation was as a UN human rights and elections officer with the United Nations Transitional Authority in Cambodia. He was then appointed Head of Political Affairs for the Peacekeeping Operations Division at the United Nations Headquarters in New York a year later.

In now-defunct Yugoslavia, Moghalu served as a Political Adviser to the Special Representative of the Secretary-General of Croatia to the United Nations from 1996 to 1997. He subsequently was appointed legal counsel to the United Nations International Criminal Court for Rwanda (UNICTR) in Arusha, Tanzania in 1997, and was later promoted to a spokesperson for the International Criminal Court.

By 2002, Moghalu moved to the World Health Organisation, the specialised health agency of the UN, as Head of Global Partnerships and Resource Mobilisation at The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria (GFATM), a public-private international development finance organisation and social investment fund. He was elevated to the position of Director in 2006 and served on the risk management committee and the senior management team that developed the corporate strategy for the Global Fund.

Moghalu was hired in 2002 to work for The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria (GFATM), with $20 billion in assets and investments in 140 low- and middle-income nations, at the World Health Organization in Geneva, Switzerland. Moghalu was in charge of global partnerships and resource mobilization. 

The Nigerian was appointed by the late Kofi Annan, the then UN Secretary-General, in 2006 to the panel charged with redesigning the organization’s internal justice system. The Redesign Panel examined and offered suggestions for ways to enhance the UN’s system of judicial administration during its six months of work at its New York headquarters in the first half of 2006. 

His stint with the UN continued in 2017 as he was named by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) to the high-level Independent Expert Group on Financing for Development. The group examined the Sustainable Development Goals and proffered suggestions towards their actualisation.

Appointment as CBN Deputy Governor

Moghalu was named deputy governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria

Moghalu was named deputy governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria in November 2009 by Umaru Yar’Adua, the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (2007–2010). Moghalu served as the deputy governor in charge of Financial System Stability at the apex bank. He was also the deputy governor responsible for Operations, where he was in charge of the management of Nigeria’s foreign reserves, as well as branch and currency operations.

He was the CBN’s representative on President Goodluck Jonathan‘s Economic Management Team and also a member of the CBN’s Monetary Policy Committee (MPC), Committee of Governors (CoG), and Board of Directors. As the apex bank’s Deputy Governor, he, among others, oversaw the implementation of payment system improvements, including the creation and use of the distinctive identification Bank Verification Number (BVN).

Being a Deputy Governor of the CBN led to Moghalu sitting on the boards of the Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), and the Alliance for Financial Inclusion in Kuala Lumpur. He also served as chairman of the boards of the Nigerian Export-Import Bank (NEXIM) and the Financial Institutions Training Centre (AFI). Additionally, he represented the CBN by serving on the board executive committee of the Kuala Lumpur-based International Islamic Liquidity Management Corporation.

While working at the CBN, Mogahlu was one of the advocates of non-interest (Islamic) banking. A furore brewed over this policy as dissenting figures claimed it was part of a strategy to enthrone Islam as a national religion. The then CBN Deputy Governor, however, defended the decision to establish Islamic banking, stating that it was one of the numerous efforts to improve financial inclusion and was not intended to facilitate an Islamisation agenda, as feared by some groups of people.

ALSO READ: Yakubu Dogara: The ex-speaker who danced from PDP to APC and back to PDP


Officer of the Order of the Nigerian (OON), a national award in Nigeria
Honorary doctorate in law (LL.D.) from Anambra State University
Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria (FCIB)
Against All Odds Achievement Award given by the African Women Economic Consortium
Nigerian Political Icon of the Year 2019 awarded by the Federation of West African Freelance Journalists Association
Ife Keego of Nnewi Kingdom, a traditional title bestowed upon him in his hometown

Kingsley Moghalu net worth

His net worth is estimated between $1 to $5 million.

Kingsley Moghalu family

Kingsley Moghalu family

Moghalu got married to Maryanne Onyinyechi Moghalu in 1994. The couple has four children.

Declaration for the Office of President

Moghalu declared his ambition to become the President of Nigeria in February 2018, ahead of the 2019 general election. He decided to actualise his ambition by running on the platform of the Young Progressives Party (YPP). Despite gaining the support of some intellectuals, the trained economist ultimately lost the election to President Muhammadu Buhari of the All Progressives Congress (APC). In October 2019, Moghalu resigned from the YPP and said he will continue to remain active in politics in a non-partisan manner.

He, however, changed his stance in June 2022 when he, once again, announced his intention to contest for the office of President, this time under the African Democratic Congress (ADC). He unveiled his campaign manifesto, entitled: “Build, Innovate, and Grow (BIG)”, which documented his agenda and plans to execute if he is elected President.

However, he was unable to scale past the first hurdle as he was defeated in the party’s primary. Nonetheless, he pledged to remain actively involved in the country’s political system and make contributions that are suitable and beneficial to the development of the country.

Kingsley Mogalu Foundation

In honour of his late father, Moghalu established the Isaac Moghalu Foundation (IMoF) in 2005. The foundation’s main priorities are the development of leadership abilities and the promotion of literacy. Over 1,000 women, including widows and women with disabilities, were trained in entrepreneurial skills in Anambra, Kano, and Nasarawa states.

The foundation has also supported educational infrastructure by providing new classroom buildings, sanitary facilities, and libraries to schools in underprivileged areas in Anambra State and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

Periodic public leadership talks to mentor Nigerians on public service are also held by the foundation.

ALSO READ: Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi: Real estate mogul enthroned as Oduduwa’s successor

Back to top button