The family of former United Nations Secretary General, Kofi Annan, has confirmed his passing away saying he died after a short illness.
The former Ghanaian diplomat died on Saturday 18th August 2018.
A joint statement issued by the family and the Kofi Annan Foundation said he died “peacefully”.
“It is with immense sadness that the Annan family and the Kofi Annan Foundation announce that Kofi Annan, former Secretary General of the United Nations and Nobel Peace Laureate, passed away peacefully on Saturday 18th August after a short illness. His wife Nane and their children Ama, Kojo and Nina were by his side during his last days.”
Kofi Annan was described by the statement as a global statesman and a “deeply committed internationalist who fought throughout his life for a fairer and more peaceful world”.
He served as the seventh Secretary-General of the United Nations from January 1997 to December 2006. He was the first to emerge from the ranks of United Nations (UN) staff to serve as the Secretary-General.
“During his distinguished career and leadership of the United Nations he was an ardent champion of peace, sustainable development, human rights and the rule of law,” the family recalled.
After stepping down from the United Nations, he continued to work “tirelessly” in the cause of peace through his chairmanship of the Kofi Annan Foundation and as chair of The Elders, the group founded by Nelson Mandela.
Mr. Kofi Annan was widely recognised as an inspiration to young and old alike.
Born in Kumasi, in Ghana, Africa, on April 8, 1938, the diplomat felt a special responsibility towards Africa.
“He was particularly committed to African development and deeply engaged in many initiatives, including his chairmanship of the Africa Progress Panel and his early leadership of the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA).”
The statement further remarked, “Wherever there was suffering or need, he reached out and touched many people with his deep compassion and empathy. He selflessly placed others first, radiating genuine kindness, warmth and brilliance in all he did. He will be greatly missed by so many around the world, as well as his staff at the Foundation and his many former colleagues in the United Nations system. He will remain in our hearts forever.”
The family has requested for privacy at this time of mourning as it arranges to announce how his “remarkable life” would be celebrated.