AS Ghanaians and the world bid farewell to global statesman and former United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan, Africa Briefing joins a continent in mourning in paying tribute to this extraordinary son of Africa.
We at Africa Briefing celebrate the towering memory of this great Ghanaian and his service to Africa and the world.
The passing of Kofi Annan is a colossal loss not only for Africa and humanity. Whether as the world’s top diplomat or as head of the Kofi Annan Foundation, which he established after his UN service, his ideals and commitment were always to the cause of a better Africa.
He was a constant advocate for human rights, the rule of law, the Millennium Development Goals and Africa. He sought to bring the UN closer to the global public by forging ties with civil society, the private sector and other partners.
He spearheaded several initiatives on Africa, including his chairmanship of the Africa Progress Panel and the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa.
In April 2001, in Abuja, Nigeria, at a summit of African leaders, Mr. Annan made the first explicit public call for a new funding mechanism, proposing the creation of The Global Fund, to be dedicated to the battle against HIV/AIDS and other infectious diseases. He made the first contribution to the Global Fund in 2001.
As the President of the African Development Bank, Akinwumi Adesina put it, ‘Mr. Annan’s passion, commitment and dedication to bettering the lives of people in Africa, and the world will not be forgotten. He was an outstanding champion of development and has left a lasting footprint through his actions and words.’
Mr. Kofi Annan is laid to rest today, 13 September, in Ghana in a ceremony attended by government officials, world leaders, family members and Bank representatives.