THE death of former United Nations (UN) Secretary-General, Kofi Atta Annan (1997-2005), on August 18, 2018 has indeed left Ghanaians bereft!
As painful as Mr Annan’s death may be, we as a people and a country (Ghana) as a whole take consolation in the fact that he left behind a very giant and an indelible legacy that will guide the conduct and the comportment of future leaders on the global stage.
FROM a humble beginning, Mr Annan rose through the ranks of the UN to become the seventh (7th) UN Chief, it is no surprise to us that his death is being celebrated across the globe, with thousands extolling his impact in the world as a moral compass.
HIS achievements in the fight against poverty eradication, improvements in accessing healthcare and education and his incessant fight for global human rights for all, will forever go unnoticed and will serve as some of the enormous achievements chalked during his tenure as UN secretary-general.
AND even after serving two-terms at the UN, Mr Annan continued to champion the fight for humanitarian activities, something one could simply say was ‘divine’. Indeed, the world will remember Mr Annan as a dedicated public-spirited person who will be remembered by generations yet unborn.
THOUGH best known for his peace-keeping work, his leadership in addressing poverty and injustice were among Kofi’s biggest achievements. From the moment he became secretary-general in 1996 he made it a top priority for the UN to focus on the elimination of poverty in the emerging world.
THESE were but a few reasons Kofi Annan championed the idea of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). Eight goals and a framework of accountability for among other things halving extreme poverty, halting the spread of HIV and providing universal primary education. They became a great rallying cry in the fight for a better world and achieved a great deal, not least in reducing hunger and alleviating poverty.
THERE are a lot of Ghanaians who can take on the mantle and do similar, like he did, but not like him because he is a unique individual who lifted Africa and showed that we are also able to do great things despite our background.
A great tree has indeed fallen but we are optimistic and confident that his works will guide Ghanaians and the world to make the world a better place for all.