The CTO is one of the largest and most important institutions within the Commonwealth of Nations - the fifty-four-member-country international grouping of countries around the world. Since 1967, it has been structured as an international treaty organisation, independent of the Commonwealth Secretariat and with diplomatic status in its host country, the UK. Thirty-five Commonwealth countries make financial contributions to the organisation, represented by its governing Council.
The SG is the public face of the organisation and is responsible for its office leadership and giving direction and clarity to the organisation’s strategic and policy development. The new SG would be required to ensure a smooth transition to the changes from the revised constitution, raise the profile of the organisation to attract investment for programme development and delivery, by developing local and international business partnerships with both private and public sectors and expand the current membership base. The appointment, which is for a four year renewable contract period, was open to citizens of those Commonwealth Countries which are full members of the CTO.
A wide reaching search was undertaken within full member Commonwealth Countries. Organisations mapped for prospective candidates included:
Computer Aid International
Ghana-India Kofi Annan Centre of Excellence in ICT
Research ICT Africa
Prospectus interviewed eleven candidates, four were met by the Council and Mr Shola Taylor was appointed. Shola has over 35 years experience in ICT on a global scale with government and the private sector. Substantive positions include seven years at Director level with ITU, Regional Director for Africa at Inmarsat UK for 5 years. Since 2000 he has been leading his own consultancy, Kemilinks Intl, a global consultancy with a turnover of US$1m. In addition to his full time posts Shola is an advisor to ICT Ministers of Nigeria, Rwanda & SA, Commissioner/Advisor of the Nigerian Communications Commission, Coordinator of the African Telecom Think Tank and Commissioner, NEPAD E-Africa Commission.