Kofi Annan in the eyes of world leaders


Dayo Emmanuel

The remains of former Secretary General of the United Nations Organisation, Mr. Kofi Annan would be interred 13th September, a source has confirmed.

According to a release via twitter handle of the Kofi Annan Foundation, @kofiananFdn, the elder statesman would be committed to mother earth in September.

“@kofiananFdn can now confirm that Kofi Annan will receive a state funeral and burial in Ghana on 13 September, with memorial services to follow in New York City and Geneva at later dates,” the foundation said in a tweet.

Annan led the UN between 1997 and 2003 and made remarkable contributions to world peace and worked hard on the Millennium Development Goals. He also worked against a world of discrimination against women.

Since his passage on 18th August, world leaders have continued to pay tributes to the deceased for his commitment to global issues.

Former US President, Barack Obama in his comment said, “His integrity, persistence, optimism and sense of our common human always informed his outreach to the community of nations. Long after he had broken barriers, Kofi never stopped his pursuit of a better world, and made time to motivate and inspire the next generation of leaders, Mitchell and I offer our condolences to his family and many loved ones.”

President of Annan’s home country, Ghana, Nana Akufo-Addo would play host to other world leaders at the state funeral for the departed diplomat in September. “I extend, on behalf of the entire Ghanaian nation, our sincere, heartfelt condolences to his beloved widow, Nane Maria, and to his devoted children, Ama, Kojo and Nina, on this great loss. Rest in perfect peace, Kofi, you have earned it,” Akufo-Addo said.

South Africa’s President Cyril Ramaphosa in his tribute said Annan was a Diplomat extraordinaire. “We will remember Kofi Anan for his commitment, his leadership and tireless efforts to advance the African agenda. Our thoughts are with his wife, Nane, his family and loved ones during this difficult time,” Ramaphosa said.

In her own comment, German Chancellor, Angela Merkel said the deceased had inspired her greatly. “Annan inspired me and many others with his ideas, his firm convictions and not the least, his charisma; he shaped the United Nations like hardly anyone before him. He knew how to spark enthusiasm, particularly among young people,” she said.

Russian leader, Vladimir Putin is another great leader who would miss Annan. “I sincerely admire his wisdom and courage as well as his ability to make balanced decisions even under the most dire and critical circumstances, Putin said about Annan.

“We give great thanks to God for Kofi Anan, an outstanding human being who represented our continent and the world with enormous graciousness, integrity and distinction,” former South African Archbishop, Desmond Tutu said.

In his own remark, Nigerian President, Muhammadu Buhari eulogized the leadership prowess of the deceased. “Kofi Annan’s origin and home will always be traced to Ghana, but his exceptional leadership roles, humanitarian spirit and contributions to global peace and development will remain indelible in the history of the entire world,” Buhari said.

Annan’s immediate successor, Ban Ki Moon said the passage left enduring legacy behind. “Kofi Anan was a committed humanitarian and monumental leader who leaves behind him a remarkable and enduring legacy.

“His passing  at the age of 80 on August 18, has left me bereft. As his immediate successor in the post of UN Secretary General, I always tried to follow in his footsteps and learned from his successes, trials and errors.

“From 2001 until his passing, I had the privilege of working with him in different capacities. Of his many and diverse accomplishments, I was fortunate to inherit the Millennium Development Goals adopted at the dawn of new millennium upon Annan’s initiative,” Ban Ki Moon said.

Kofi Atta Annan led the UNO as the Secretary General between January 1997 and December 2006 and won  the 2001 Nobel Peace Prize.

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