Ahmad Rufai Zakari is the Special Adviser to the President of Nigeria on Infrastructure. Prior to his current role, Ahmad spent his career at General Electric. Ahmad spent 15 years working across the then vast conglomerate portfolio of General Electric working and executing projects in 20 countries across the globe. He spent time with GE Transportation (now Wabtech) as a Systems Engineer, GE Oil and Gas (now Baker Hughes) as a Business Process Enhancement Executive and also at GE Power (as Executive Director for Nigeria and South Africa). Ahmad is an alumni of the prestigious General Electric Corporate Audit (and Consulting) Staff (CAS). Ahmad is also a winner of the General Electric Chairman’s Circle award for outstanding performance in the company. Ahmad has the distinction of being the only African in GE history to attain the title of Executive in the company through the prestigious CAS program.
Ahmad is the youngest cabinet level appointee in the Buhari Administration. Under Ahmad, the Office of the Special Adviser to the President on Infrastructure (OSAPI) has become a hub for deal structuring and investment. With no specific capital budget, the OSAPI has overseen, participated or coordinated over $1bn in transactions structured and closed. OSAPI has designed innovative solutions to execute projects in electricity Transmission, Distribution and On and Off-grid Renewable. Ahmad has worked closely across government agencies and also with international partners such as the World Bank, the UN SE4ALL, the Global Energy Alliance for People and Planet (GEAPP) in executing his scope of work.
Ahmad was also a pivotal member of the technical committee that established the InfraCorp Nigeria (a recently launched $2.5bn fund for Infrastructure investment in Nigeria). As part of his responsibilities, Ahmad is a board observer on InfraCorp Nigeria, participates in the National Council on Privitisation, the Niger Delta Power Holding Company Board and the National Economic Council. Ahmad is also the Secretary for the highest policy decision making group on Electricity in the country, the Presidential Power Sector Coordination Working Group.
Ahmad is from Gwiwa LGA in Kazaure Emirate in Jigawa and is also an active member of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Jigawa.
Ahmad is an Electrical Engineer by training and also has an educational background in Economics. He attended the State University of New York at Buffalo.