In April of 2018, we celebrated a double anniversary: Kofi Annan’s 80th birthday and the 10th anniversary of the founding of his Foundation.
We marked this milestone by inviting people to join us on the “Road to Peace” – a recognition and celebration of Kofi Annan’s life-long commitment to making the world a more peaceful place.
Sadly, the time of celebration was cut short when Kofi Annan passed away on the 18th of August last year.
Since then, the Annan family and the staff of the Foundation have been, and continue to be, deeply moved by the many messages of condolence, sympathy and encouragement that we have received from people around the world.
We mourn the loss of a great statesman, a committed internationalist and a compassionate human being, but we remain determined to advance Kofi Annan’s vision for a fairer, more peaceful world.
He intended that the Foundation continue his work.
Our task now is to build on his extraordinary legacy and the values and principles which he upheld.
“Healthy societies”, he would say, “are built on peace, inclusive development, and human rights: there can be no peace without inclusive development, and there can be no lasting development without peace. And no society can long remain prosperous without the rule of law and respect for human rights.”
Under Mr Annan’s leadership, the Foundation has designed and launched initiatives to assist countries and communities in achieving those objectives and moving forward on the road to peace.
We do this by safeguarding elections and democratic practices, encouraging reconciliation after conflict, deploying youth leadership to counter violent extremism, and supporting peace processes that produce real and lasting peace.
These initiatives, as well as others that may follow, serve the cause of peace by promoting inclusive governance and economic development – for the many, not just a few.
Unfortunately, Kofi Annan’s time on earth has come to an end, but his moral voice is not stilled. The Kofi Annan Foundation will take forward Kofi Annan’s vision and values. As one of the Young Leaders of the Foundation’s Extremely Together initiative said at a commemoration “Mr Annan was not the past, he is the future.”
Do join us on that journey to the future.
President, Kofi Annan Foundation