The Konza Technopolis Development Authority (KoTDA) has appointed John Paul Okwiri as its new chief executive officer, the agency announced Thursday.
Okwiri, described as a “dynamic and visionary executive,” takes over leadership of the massive technology hub project outside Nairobi that aims to turn Kenya into Africa’s Silicon Savannah. He replaces former CEO Eng. John Tanui, who was appointed principal secretary in the Ministry of Information Communication and the Digital Economy last year.
“Following the appointment, Mr. Okwiri will be charged with the responsibility of providing strategic leadership to Konza Technopolis to achieve its vision as a leading global Technopolis and innovation hub,” the agency said in a statement.
The CEO has overseen major projects at Konza in recent years, including construction of phase one infrastructure and establishment of the Kenya Advance Institute of Science and Technology. He also helped build a national data center and brought a 2024 international science parks conference to Konza.
“He was instrumental in mobilizing resources to construct a tier 3 National Data Center, transforming Kenya’s cloud infrastructure and Data Center services in addition to securing the 41st International Association of Science Parks (IAPS) 2024 Conference for Konza Technopolis,” the statement said.
The CEO holds an MBA in supply chain management from the University of Nairobi and degrees in accounting. He has over a decade of experience delivering strategic infrastructure and innovation projects in the public and private sectors.
“John Paul Okwiri is a dynamic and visionary executive passionate about driving transformative change,” the agency said. “With a proven track record in delivering large-scale strategic infrastructure and innovation projects leveraging diverse resourcing models.”
Konza Technopolis, located about 37 miles from Nairobi, broke ground in 2013. The project aims to build a sustainable, smart city supporting technology, education and manufacturing. Developers have faced funding challenges but remain optimistic.
“The board of KoTDA, Management, and Staff congratulates Mr. Okwiri for the appointment and wishes him well as he embarks on the journey of bringing to fruition Africa’s Silicon Savanna,” the agency statement said.