Team Profile

Solomon A. Dersso

Managing Director

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A leading legal scholar and analyst of peace and security and current African and African Union (AU) affairs, Dr Solomon Ayele Dersso serves as a Commissioner of the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights, the premier human rights body of the AU. Formerly, he worked as Head of the Peace and Security Council Report Program of the Institute for Security Studies (ISS) after serving as a senior researcher, which he assumed on joining the ISS in 2008. He was also a research fellow at the South African Institute for Advanced Constitutional Law (SAIFAC). Apart from documenting and publishing on AU policy issues and processes, Dr Dersso has delivered high-level policy briefings and presentations for governmental and inter-governmental representatives and policy-making bodies including the AU Peace and Security Council, IGAD, the Panel of the Wise and the AU High-Level Panel on Egypt. His legal scholarship that covers teaching of human rights and academic and policy research includes non-faculty professorship at the College of Law and Governance, Addis Ababa University. With over hundred publications including four single authored monographs, one edited book, more than two dozen peer-reviewed journal articles, book chapters as well as reports and numerous opinion editorials and analysis, Dr Dersso’s expert opinion featured in the works of major media organizations including Mail and Guardian, Times, SABC, Al-Jazeera, Daily Maverick, CGTN, the Guardian, and the BBC. He holds a PhD degree from the School of Law, University of the Witwatersrand, LLM Degree from the Centre for Human Rights, University of Pretoria and LLB from School of Law, Addis Ababa University.

Hallelujah Lulie

Director of Programs

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Hallelujah Lulie is a regional security and political researcher and analysist interested in democratization, security sector, nationalism & social movements in the Horn of Africa, & the affairs of the African Union. He recently finalized a Post Grad study at the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE), specializing on democratization and nationalism. Prior to that, he worked as a researcher at the Peace and Security Council Report Program (PRP) of the Institute for Security Studies (ISS) Addis Ababa office for seven years, and a research consultant for the international Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS) for a year. He also worked as a journalist covering the African Union (AU) and the political and security dynamics in Ethiopia and the Horn of Africa before joining the research and think-tank sphere. He wrote for local newspapers including The Reporter, The Sub-Saharan Informer and Capital, and freelanced and worked for the Chinese international news agency Xinhua, and the German international broadcaster Deutche Welle. Hallelujah holds a BA in English, minoring in Law from Hawassa University, and two MAs in Journalism and Communication, and Peace and Security Studies from Addis Ababa University and UPEACE/IPSS respectively. Hallelujah has written and published on media and democracy in Ethiopia, the African Peace and Security Architecture (APSA), and Ethiopia’s role in the Horn of Africa. He made numerous high-level policy briefings and presentations to political and public leaders, and decision making bodies of the African Union. His expertise was used by media organizations including the New York Times, The Washington Post, the BBC, Al-Jazeera, CNN, The Economist, the Guardian, Reuters and the Wall Street Journal among others.

Feven Mekonnen

Office Administrator

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Ms. Feven Mekonnen has a MA in Gender and Governance from Ahfad University in Khartoum, Sudan and a BA in Management from University of Mekele, Ethiopia. Ms Mekonnen is currently working as an Office Manager at Amani Africa. Ms. Mekonnen also lectures at one of the private universities in Addis Ababa, Admas University one a part time basis. Ms Mekonnen previously worked at the Center for Accelerated Women’s Economic Empowerment (CAWEE), a membership organization as a Project Manager working on women economic empowerment projects with a focus on the export sector. Ms Mekonnen’s experience includes project development, supervision, implementation and reporting. She is responsible for the administration of the offices and projects of Amani Africa.