The Forty-Fourth Session of the Administrative Council of the African Regional Intellectual Property Organization (ARIPO) has voted Mr. Bemanya Twebaze, a candidate from Uganda, as the Organization’s next Director General (DG) for a fixed term of four years, beginning January 1, 2021 through December 31, 2024.
“Thank you to the Administrative Council of ARIPO for entrusting me to lead ARIPO for the next four years. I will give my best energy to make meaningful transformations at ARIPO,” said Mr. Bemanya Twebaze at the close of the voting on November 17, 2020.
Mr. Twebaze will be the sixth DG at the ARIPO Secretariat following the current and outgoing DG, Dr. Fernando dos Santos of Mozambique, whose eight-year term ends on 31 December 2020.
Mr. Twebaze is the Chief Executive Officer of Uganda Registration Services Bureau, the National Intellectual Property Office of Uganda.
Mr. Twebaze’s election by the ARIPO Administrative Council was made through an online voting system. He emerged as the winner ahead of two other candidates.
ARIPO is an intergovernmental organization based in Harare, Zimbabwe. It was created in Lusaka, Zambia, on 9th December 1976 under the Lusaka Agreement.
ARIPO grants or register intellectual property rights such as patents, trademarks, copyrights, utility models, industrial designs, plant varieties, traditional knowledge, folklore expression, and geographical indications. ARIPO also contributes to the shaping of the African and global intellectual property landscape through capacity building, awareness creation and sharing of technological information.
ARIPO currently has 20 Member States: Botswana, The Kingdom of Eswatini, The Gambia, Ghana, Kenya, The Kingdom of Lesotho, Liberia, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Rwanda, Sao Tome and Principe, Sierra Leone, Somalia, Sudan, United Republic of Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.
As an inter-governmental organization, ARIPO facilitates cooperation among member states in intellectual property matters, with the objective of pooling financial and human resources and seeking technological advancement for economic, social, technological, scientific, and industrial development.
Membership of the organization is open to all Member States of the African Union (AU) or of the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA). The ARIPO Secretariat is based in Harare, Zimbabwe.