WINDHOEK - President Hage Geingob, has described the late former UN Secretary-General and Nobel laureate Kofi Annan, who died on Saturday, as a global statesman, a courageous humanitarian and exceptional servant of the African continent and humanity.
Geingob learned of Annan’s passing from journalists during the post SADC summit media briefing on Saturday. As a result, the media briefing was subsequently called off. Annan, the Ghanaian national, served as UN chief from 1997 to 2006 and is the only black African ever to hold the post.
Since then, he has served as the UN special envoy for Syria, leading efforts to find a solution to the conflict.
The career diplomat died in hospital in the Swiss city of Bern.
He “passed away peacefully on Saturday after a short illness”, the Kofi Annan Foundation said on Saturday.
“The loss of Kofi Annan, an exemplary son of Ghana, leaves a huge void for the African continent, and humanity at large, which he has served as a courageous humanitarian with immeasurable passion and distinction,” said Geingob in a media statement on Saturday.
“Without doubt,” he said, “Africa has lost a man of integrity and a hero of our continent who worked throughout his entire life persistently for a better humanity.” Geingob praises the exceptional work of the late Annan in the promotion of peace, as Secretary-General of the UN to
emerge from within the ranks of the organisation, including as Founder of the Kofi Annan Foundation, and Chairman of the Elders, an organisation founded by the first President of a democratic South Africa, Nelson Mandela.
“My friend Kofi Annan worked for a better world, and succeeded in many ways in that regard,” President Geingob states.
Geingob extended his sincere condolences to the wife of Annan, Nane Maria Annan, his children, family and the people of Ghana.