Born and raised in Northern Nigeria, Matthew was a seasoned volunteer, social entrepreneur, development specialist, polyglot who spoke five languages, and a proud farmer. He held a BSC in Agricultural Science from Landmark University Nigeria and a PGD in Public Administration and Policy from the University of Maiduguri. Matthew spent time working in the private sector before interning with the Emergency Coordination Center and working for Mercy Corps. At the time of his death, he was working as a training assistant at the International NGO Safety Organisation (INSO).
Matthew represented West Africa at the 2017 Youth Ag Summit in Brussels, Belgium, where his creativity, ingenuity, team spirit, and passion shone through. He was passionate about alleviating rural poverty by supporting farmers to boost their incomes through value addition, adopting good agricultural practices, using innovative inputs, and adopting digital tools to access new markets. Among other things, he founded Sesame Africa, a social enterprise focused on improving the lives of underprivileged, marginalized women in remote agricultural communities.
Those of us who had the good fortune to meet Matthew, at YAS 2017 or elsewhere, will remember him as a calm, helpful, and passionate young man who was unwavering in his commitment to ending hunger, poverty and discrimination. He had the courage to dream big and work hard to achieve his goals, and it is heartbreaking to see his potential cut short. Our deepest condolences are with his family and friends at this tragic time.