Coventry University graduate Mutaru, who has dedicated his career to helping young people turn away from terrorism by setting up the West African Centre for Counter Extremism (WACCE) in Ghana, has been named African of the Year.
The organisation works to increase understanding of violent extremism and radicalisation and supports vulnerable people, hoping to help those at risk, integrate back into society and to return to education or find work.
Mutaru has helped over 20 vulnerable young people turn against radicalisation with the support of his team including a 21-year old young man who almost travelled to Syria to join ISIS but reconsidered with just hours to spare.
Madura was named African of the Year on 17th January 2018 for his work and is also up for an Alumni Award.
Former President of Botswana, Festus Mogae who chaired the award jury said:
“Mutaru’s extraordinary advocacy will help deepen the understanding of violent extremism and radicalisation of youths across the continent”.
Coventry University graduate Mutaru Muqthar said:
“I am truly excited and honoured to have won this award. And certainly, my education at Coventry has helped me on my journey in so many ways.”
Mutaru Muqthar graduated from an undergraduate degree in Business Administration in his home country before coming to study at Coventry University, graduating with a Master’s in Terrorism, International Crime and Security in 2013.
He was inspired to set up WACCE in 2014 to fight extremism after his family fell victim to the horrors of conflict in Northern Ghana,.
John Latham, Vice-Chancellor of Coventry University, said:
“We extend our warmest congratulations to Mutaru for this highly prestigious achievement.”
In recognition of his work, Mutaru was also elected as a Mandela Washington Fellow for Young African Leaders in 2016.