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Guest: Shigeo Yamagata, Experiencing Nigeria as JICA Director in Nigeria

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Mr. Shigeo Yamagata's first experience of Africa was in a village in western Kenya where he was a JOCV volunteer as a teacher of mathematics and science in a secondary school at the age of the late twenties. During his stay there for two years and a half, he was convinced that the African and the Japanese have the common sense of value, and got interested in the history in which the African people has lived. After Kenya, he was working in JICA, engaged mainly in the African affairs. Nigeria was initially one of the countries which he had wanted to keep away from being assigned, but he changed his wish around the year 2000 when it looked more active than before, and was assigned there at the end of 2003. He became a devotee of Nigeria after finding many sincere Nigerians and the powerful life-style of the people. Since Nigeria has still a lot of conflicts within the society and the people are living difficult lives, he wants to assist their own efforts for better lives. He has other experiences in Cote d’Ivoire, Niger, Gabon and Burundi.

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