Ofeibea Quist-Arcton
Jacques Coughlin/N/A

Ofeibea Quist-Arcton

International Correspondent, Dakar

Ofeibea Quist-Arcton is a journalist and broadcaster from Ghana who reports for NPR News on issues and developments related to West Africa. She spent her early years in Ghana, Italy, Britain and Kenya.

Quist-Arcton has lived and worked in the U.K., France, Ivory Coast, U.S., South Africa and most recently Senegal, traveling all over Africa as a journalist, broadcaster, commentator and host.

After completing high school in Britain, she took a degree in French studies with international relations and Spanish at the London School of Economics (LSE) and went on to study radio journalism at the Polytechnic of Central London, with two internships at the BBC.

Quist-Arcton joined the BBC in 1985, working at a number of regional radio stations all over Britain, moving two years later to the renowned BBC World Service at Bush House in London, as a producer and host in the African Service. She traveled and reported throughout Africa.

She spent the year leading up to 1990 in Paris, on a BBC journalist exchange with Radio France International (RFI), working in "Monito" — a service supplying reports and interviews about Africa to African radio stations, and with RFI's English (for Africa) Service as a host, reporter and editor.

Later in 1990, Quist-Arcton won one of the BBC's coveted foreign correspondents posts, moving to Abidjan, Ivory Coast, to head the corporation's West Africa bureau. From there, she covered 24 countries, straddling the Sahara to the heart of the continent — crisscrossing the continent from Mauritania, Liberia, Sierra Leone and Mali, to Zaire and Congo-Brazzaville, via Chad, Equatorial Guinea and Cameroon. She contributed to all BBC radio and television outlets, covering the flowering of democracy in the region, as well as the outbreak of civil wars, revolutions and coups, while always keeping an eye on the "other" stories about Africa that receive minimal media attention — including the continent's rich cultural heritage. Quist-Arcton also contributed to NPR programs during her reporting assignment in West and Central Africa.

After four years as BBC West Africa correspondent, she returned to Bush House in 1994, as a host and senior producer on the BBC World Service flagship programs, Newshour & Newsday (now The World Today), and as a contributing Africa specialist for other radio and TV output.

Quist-Arcton laced up her traveling shoes again in 1995 and relocated to Boston as a roving reporter for The World, a co-production between the BBC, Public Radio International (PRI) and WGBH. She lived in Cambridge and enjoyed getting to know Massachusetts and the rest of New England, learning a new language during winter, most of it related to snow!

For The World, she traveled around the United States, providing the program with an African journalist's perspective on North American life. She also spent six months as a roving Africa reporter, covering — among other events — the fall of President Mobutu Sese Seko in Zaire (now the Democratic Republic of Congo) in 1997.

In 1998, after another stint back at BBC World Service, Quist-Arcton was appointed co-host of the South African Broadcasting Corporation's flagship radio drive-time show, PM Live, based in Johannesburg.

In 2000, she left the BBC to join allAfrica.com (allAfricaGlobal Media) as Africa correspondent, covering the continent's top stories, in all domains, and developing new radio shows for webcast and syndication to radio stations around the continent.

After six years in South Africa, Quist-Arcton joined NPR in November 2004 at the newly-created post of West Africa Correspondent, moving back to her home region, with a new base in Senegal.

Her passions are African art and culture, music, literature, open-air markets, antiques - and learning. She loves to travel and enjoys cycling and photography.

[+] read more[-] less

World Scrabble champion Wellington Jighere, 33, (right) is one of Nigeria's many masters. His strategy: "When you are expecting me to do the traditional thing, I will just choose to do something that is uncharacteristic." Ofeibea Quist-Arcton/NPR hide caption

toggle caption Ofeibea Quist-Arcton/NPR

And The No. 1 Scrabble Nation In The World Is ...

Audio will be available later today.

Boko Haram Video Is Said To Show Some Missing Nigerian Schoolgirls

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/490037602/490037603" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Tens Of Thousands Displaced By Boko Haram In Nigeria

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/489816665/489816666" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

ISIS Fires West Africa Affairs Manager But He Refuses To Leave

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/489433643/489433644" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Nigerian, Interpol Agents Collaborate In Arrest Of Top Cyber Scammer

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/488274020/488274021" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

After Boko Haram Ambush, U.N. Suspends Aid Missions To Northeastern Nigeria

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/487952518/487952519" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Deadly Clashes In South Sudan Threaten Young Country's Future

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/485593451/485593452" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Assaga camp in Niger is home to some 6,000 refugees, either displaced within the country or from across the border in Nigeria. Issouf Sanogo/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption Issouf Sanogo/AFP/Getty Images

One Mother's Perspective On What It's Like To Be A Refugee

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/482792609/482832782" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Assane Thiobane, 28, a motorbike taxi driver in Tambacounda, eastern Senegal, is saving up to leave for Europe, where he hopes to earn more money for himself and his family. If you die along the way, he says, that's your destiny. Ofeibea Quist-Arcton/NPR hide caption

toggle caption Ofeibea Quist-Arcton/NPR

In Senegal, They're Dreaming Of Europe

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/480266872/480335785" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Flimsy straw shelters at the Assaga refugee camp house Nigerians and displaced people within Niger who have fled from Boko Haram raids. They say they are hungry and need more food aid. Ofeibea Quist-Arcton/NPR hide caption

toggle caption Ofeibea Quist-Arcton/NPR

Why Niger Is Having A Horrible Year

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/479274192/479274193" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Nigerian president Muhammadu Buhari speaks with freed Chibok schoolgirl Amina Ali Nkeki, who is carrying her baby, as Borno state governor Kashim Shettima (C) looks on in Abuja, on May 19, 2016. Stringer/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption Stringer/AFP/Getty Images

Nigerian President Offers Support After First Of 219 Missing Schoolgirls Rescued

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/478962832/478962833" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript