FORMER UN SEC GEN KOFFI ANAN PASSES ON AGED 80

kOFFI Annan, who was a former Secretary-General of the United Nations (UN), died on Saturday at the age of 80 years in a Swiss hospital.

The world received the news with sadness and shock.

Mr Annan’s lifestyle and qualities were responsible for his appointment as the UN Secretary General in 1997 as well as the Nobel Peace Price he won in 2001.

Former Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo said “I received the shocking news of the demise of former United Nations Secretary-General, Kofi Annan, with deep sadness as the loss of a brother and friend.

“I commiserate with the Annan family, particularly the Late Mr Annan’s widow, Nane Maria and their children Ama, Kojo and Nina.

“I equally commiserate with the government and people of Ghana; the Secretary-General and staff of the United Nations and indeed all lovers of peace and progress across the world, on this great loss,” he said.

Mr Annan’s contributions to conflict resolution in Syria and Myanmar as UN and Arab League joint Special Envoy in Syria and as Chair of the UN Advisory Commission on Rakhine State.

Mr Annan demonstarted statesmanship and diplomacy, adding that he was also dedicated, firm and just.

Kofi’s contribution to good governance and sustainable development in Africa, particularly through the Kofi Annan Foundation and the Africa Progress Panel will not soon be forgotten.

“Kofi Chaired the Africa Progress Panel, until 2017 when we took a decision to transfer the activities of the Panel from Geneva, Switzerland

The United Nations has described the late Kofi Annan, as “a guiding force for good” and a “proud son of Africa who became a global champion for peace and all humanity.”

Annan, the former Secretary-General of the World body, died after a short illness, according to a statement published on his official Twitter account on Saturday.

The UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres in a statement said Annan remained someone he always turns to for counsel and wisdom.

The UN chief said, “He provided people everywhere with a space for dialogue, a place for problem-solving and a path to a better world.

“In these turbulent and trying times, he never stopped working to give life to the values of the United Nations Charter. His legacy will remain a true inspiration for all us.”

The former Secretary-General headed the intergovernmental organisation from 1997 to 2006.

His foundation announced his death on Saturday and the late UN scribe reportedly died in hospital in Bern, Switzerland, in the early hours of Saturday.

Annan was the seventh Secretary-General of the United Nations, after Egyptian diplomat, Boutrous Boutrous-Ghali exit in December 1996.

President Muhammadu Buhari in a statement by his Special Adviser on Media, Mr. Femi Adesina, said, Nigerians and ECOWAS member countries share in the deep loss of the renowned Ghanaian diplomat.

Part of the statement read, “President Buhari said 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, especially the efforts to combat HIV/AIDS in Africa and launch of the UN Global Compact.”

The President of the Senate, Dr Bukola Saraki said Annan’s death, marked the end of a golden era in global politics and international relations.

Saraki in a statement by his Special Adviser, Media and Publicity, Mr. Yusuph Olaniyonu, described the late Annan as a quintessential African diplomat on the global plane and a citizen of the world.

Also the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Mr. Yakubu Dogara, described the death of former UN scribe,  as a huge loss to Africa and humanity.

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