Gregory Warner

Gregory Warner is NPR's East Africa Correspondent. His reports cover the diverse issues and voices of a region that is experiencing unparalleled economic growth as well as a rising threat of global terrorism. His coverage can be heard across NPR and

Before joining NPR, Warner was a senior reporter for American Public Media's Marketplace, where he endeavored to make the economics of American health care vivid and engaging. He's used puppets to illustrate the effects of Internet diagnoses on the doctor-patient relationship. He composed a Suessian cartoon to explain why health care job growth policies can increase the national debt. His musical journey into the shadow world of medical coding won the 2012 Best News Feature award from the Third Coast International Audio Festival.

Prior to Marketplace, Warner was a freelance radio producer reporting from conflict zones around the world. He climbed mountains with smugglers in Pakistan for This American Life, descended into illegal mineshafts in the Democratic Republic of Congo for Marketplace's "Working" series, and lugged his accordion across Afghanistan on the trail of the "Afghan Elvis" for NPR's Radiolab.

Warner's radio and multimedia work has won awards from Edward R Murrow, New York Festivals, AP, PRNDI, and a Sigma Delta Chi award from the Society of Professional Journalists. He has twice won Best News Feature from the Third Coast International Audio Festival in 2009 and 2012.

Warner earned his degree in English at Yale University. He is conversant in Arabic.


3:33 pm
Wed September 10, 2014

In Strange Twist, Kenyans March For Police Officer Accused Of Murder

Kenyan police confront university students protesting higher fees on May 20. The police have a reputation for corruption and violence and are not well-liked. But when a popular officer was arrested and charged with a vigilante-style killing, residents took to the streets to support him.
Tom Maruko Barcroft Media/Landov

Originally published on Wed September 10, 2014 7:38 pm

Kenyans rate their police force among the most corrupt institutions in the country. Even worse, police are often accused of inflicting violence on citizens. So when a Nairobi officer was arrested for murder this week, you would think most people would applaud.

But in a strange twist, residents in the officer's district rose defiantly in defense of his vigilante approach to justice.

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3:19 pm
Wed September 3, 2014

U.S. Airstrikes Might Narrow Aims Of Somalia's Leading Jihadi Group

Originally published on Wed September 3, 2014 6:04 pm

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3:20 pm
Mon September 1, 2014

Economic Impact Of Ebola Crisis Spreads Across Africa

Originally published on Mon September 1, 2014 3:36 pm

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3:09 pm
Wed August 27, 2014

When Do Food Shortages Become A Famine? There's A Formula For That

A child with suspected malnutrition is examined at a medical clinic in Malakal, South Sudan, in July.
Matthew Abbott AP

Originally published on Wed August 27, 2014 6:29 pm

Chris Hillbruner has a little-known job with an extraordinary responsibility: to determine how close a given country has come to famine.

In his six years at the U.S. government's Famine Early Warning Systems Network, or FEWS NET, he's only officially declared famine once before, in Somalia in 2011.

Hillbruner explains that the bar for declaring famine was deliberately set high to avoid the confusion of the 1980s and 1990s, when well-meaning aid agencies acted like the boy who cried wolf.

"Famine," Hillbruner says, "is a word that gets thrown around a lot."

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3:16 pm
Mon August 18, 2014

Often On The Move, Restless Elephants Are Tough To Count — And Keep Safe

Originally published on Mon August 18, 2014 5:18 pm

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Planet Money
3:00 am
Fri August 15, 2014

Fleeing War And Finding Work

Ali Daud Omar will repair your cell phone for $6. He's one of the refugees benefiting from the Ugandan government's right-to-work policy.
Gregory Warner/NPR

Originally published on Fri August 15, 2014 7:20 am

In most parts of the world, refugees are not allowed to work.

But in Uganda, refugee life is different. One of the oldest refugee camps in Africa is remarkable not just for its stone houses instead of plastic tarps. The camp is also full of markets and traders, selling everything from imported fabric to smartphones.

Mohammed Osman Ali, a Somali refugee, runs an arcade at the camp. He rents out time on a PlayStation to other refugees from Eritrea, Ethiopia, or fellow Somalis.

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3:16 pm
Thu August 14, 2014

Kenyan Health Workers Fear Ebola May Take Flight

Originally published on Thu August 14, 2014 5:35 pm

Kenya's international airport is on high alert, since the Kenya Medical Association has called on the national airline to suspend flights due to concerns over the Ebola outbreak. The airline has responded by pledging faith in its new screening procedures. The World Health Organization has labeled Kenya a "high risk" country for the spread of Ebola.

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3:00 pm
Wed August 6, 2014

How Anti-Bribery Laws In Europe Are Bringing U.S. Investors To Africa

Originally published on Wed August 6, 2014 6:29 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit

3:17 pm
Tue August 5, 2014

Shadow Events Hope To Skim Some Attention From U.S.-Africa Summit

Originally published on Wed August 6, 2014 8:47 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit



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4:13 am
Tue August 5, 2014

African Leaders: No One Country Can Stop Elephant Poaching

Satao was a 45-year-old Kenyan elephant with tusks so long they brushed the ground. Poachers killed him in June with a poisoned arrow. African leaders gathered in Washington said there needs to be better cooperation on the continent to prevent poaching.
Tsavo Trust

Originally published on Tue August 5, 2014 3:08 pm

The killing, by poisoned arrow, of a 45-year-old elephant named Satao this June hit Kenya particularly hard. Not just because Satao had lived so long, with tusks so grand they brushed the grass where he walked.

But also because Satao was under almost 24-hour watch by Kenyan game rangers to protect him from poachers. However, the game rangers were unable to follow Satao when he roamed into an area of dense brush at the boundary of the park, an area where poachers are known to hide.

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5:46 pm
Sun August 3, 2014

Africa's Leaders Aim To Change Perception Of The Continent

Scores of African leaders gather in Washington this week at an unprecedented summit organized by President Obama.
Paul J. Richards AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon August 25, 2014 11:11 am

Africa rarely gets a break — in the news headlines, anyway. But as the spread of the deadly Ebola virus continues to dominate the news cycle, there's a very different story about Africa that threatens to be forgotten.

One way to start that story is with the nearly $1 billion worth of deals to be announced this week between the United States and Africa, at a historic U.S. summit that will bring President Obama together with the leaders of more than 40 African nations.

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10:11 am
Tue June 10, 2014

Western Countries Issue Warnings; Kenyan Tourism Gets Pummeled

Two customers sit having a drink in the Diani Sea resort in Diani, Kenya, outside Mombasa, on May 16. Travel advisories issued by Western countries are hitting Mombasa hard, forcing hotel closures and thousands of workers to lose their jobs.
Ivan Lieman AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu June 12, 2014 6:43 pm

The Baobab Resort sits on the south coast of Kenya's Mombasa Island, but it has some of the homey feel of an old Catskills resort.

On a recent day, sounds from outside trickled into the resort's largest conference hall: children enjoying their last hour of daylight on the beach, staff members singing tunes from The Lion King, warming up for their evening show.

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8:35 am
Mon June 9, 2014

Escaping South Sudan's Violence Often Means Going Hungry

Women carry sticks in Ganyliel, South Sudan, an area protected from the violence in the country due to its isolation. But food there is scarce.
Gregory Warner NPR

Originally published on Mon June 9, 2014 9:00 am

Even in an undeveloped country like South Sudan, Ganyliel can feel like the middle of nowhere: a bunch of tiny islands surrounded by a gigantic swampy floodplain fed by the River Nile during rainy season. To get here, I took a helicopter from the capital, then ditched my sneakers for gumboots. I've waded out into water that's too deep for an SUV and too shallow for a speedboat.

I board a canoe made from a hollowed-out palm tree.

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11:29 am
Thu May 29, 2014

With Swift, Quiet Moves, Nigerian Group Limits Religious Violence

A man cleans up the site of Tuesday's car bomb explosion in Jos, Nigeria, on Thursday. The city was spared deadly reprisals, in part because a peace group intervened.
Sunday Alamba AP

Originally published on Fri May 30, 2014 9:20 am

The city of Jos sits on an invisible fault line between Nigeria's mostly Christian south and its largely Muslim north. Its population is almost 50-50 Muslim-Christian.

So it's not surprising that twin car bombs in a crowded downtown vegetable market on May 20 killed both Christians and Muslims. Most of the 133 victims were women, and 25 were children.

But that could have been only the beginning of the killing, as was the case in the past.

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2:16 am
Wed May 21, 2014

Relatives Of Kidnapped Girls: Bring Them Back — But Alive

People attend a rally in Abuja, Nigeria, calling on the government to rescue kidnapped school girls.
Sunday Alamba AP

Originally published on Wed May 21, 2014 8:30 am

Nigerians are asking themselves how far their government should go to bring almost 300 abducted schoolgirls back to their families.

The militants of Boko Haram, the Islamist extremist group that claimed responsibility for the kidnapping last month, have offered to swap the girls for some prisoners held by the government.

That offer was immediately rejected by the Nigerian government, but relatives of the girls say that firepower alone wont save them. They want the government to reconsider.

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