Mr. Annan received a very warm welcome from the 9000 young people at Johannesburg’s FNB Stadium at this year’s One Young World Summit’s opening ceremony where he delivered the keynote address. Mr. Annan reminded them that they “embody the talent and energy that is driving change, innovation and creativity around the world.” Mr. Annan also noted that “we expect – and we need – great things from each and every one of you.”
Over 1300 young leaders from 190 countries then continued to meet over the course of the next few days to discuss and debate ideas and initiatives to change the world with leaders including Richard Branson, Bob Geldof, Ariana Huffington, Fatima Bhutto and Paul Polman lending experience, advice encouragement and support on crucial issues such as discrimination, human rights, sustainable development, unemployment and global heath.
Mr. Annan lead the fifth Kofi Annan Dialogues: LIVE “google hangout” on “Building a Fairer, More Secure World” and later joined Bob Geldof and Ahmed Kathrada on stage to hear about the remarkable efforts and achievements of some of the OYW delegates who inspired the audience with their steadfast vision and determination to bring about positive change. Highlights of the event are available for viewing.