Topic Description :
The Impact of Covid19 on Food Security and Nutrition in Africa
Mr. Abdel Mageed Yahia
United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) Director, UAE office and Representative for the GCC Region
Mr. Abdel Mageed Yahia is the WFP Director for the UAE office and Representative for the GCC Region. Based in Dubai, leading the WFP operations’ support and services and spearheading efforts to enhance WFP’s engagement with Government entities as well as the Private and Public sector in the Region.
Mageed brings in diverse experience enriched by both functional and geographic mobility. Prior to taking up this position, Mageed was the WFP Representative, Country Director and Emergency Coordinator in Jordan, responsible for one of the largest WFP emergency operations in the Middle East Region. Under his leadership, WFP Jordan pioneered the introduction and implementation of innovative technology-based solutions such as Blockchain Technology, a Biometric Identification System (IRIS scan) for redeeming humanitarian assistance and Hydroponic Containers for production of animal-feed for vulnerable Jordanians. WFP Jordan was also the first to introduce the ‘choice modality’ allowing beneficiaries to redeem humanitarian assistance with more freedom of choice and in a dignified manner.
Prior to Jordan, Mageed served as Deputy Director of WFP Human Resources where he was directly managing major projects transforming HR services, introducing innovative systems and streamlining HR transactional work. Before joining HR, Mageed worked as the Deputy Country Director for WFP Pakistan. During his tenure, WFP achieved significant milestones including securing multi-year in-kind contributions from the Government of Pakistan, local production of specialized nutritious food and responding to the 2010 floods.
Mageed has more than thirty years’ experience working in the humanitarian field in both emergency and development settings. He served in various operations in areas devasted by conflict, genocide, famine, as well as natural disasters. His experience includes relief efforts in the wake of the war in Lebanon in 2006, following the genocide in Rwanda and Burundi in the 1990s as well as humanitarian assistance during the drought in Niger and Malawi, among others.
Mageed started his career with WFP in Rwanda in 1997 and has since served in a variety of Field and Headquarters Offices including Malawi, Burundi, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Darfur, Lebanon, Ivory coast, Liberia, Chad, Niger, Sudan, and Rome. He was also an establishing member the WFP office in the UAE in 2002, where he launched the procurement function and expanded the scope of work of the office by initiating services to field operations.
Mageed’s humanitarian career with the UN began in Sudan under Operation Lifeline Sudan (OLS); the first under the UN jurisdiction to operate in both rebel and government-controlled zones to provide humanitarian assistance throughout the war-torn and drought-afflicted regions in South Sudan.
Mageed, a national of Sudan, holds a Degree in Law from Morocco and is married with three children.