Kofi Annan To Be Buried Today In Ghana
The late former United Nations Secretary-General, Kofi Annan, will be buried today, Thursday, 13 September 2018, after laying-in-state at the foyer of the Accra International Conference Center (AICC) for three days.
A burial service will be held on Thursday morning followed by a private burial at the New Military Cemetery, with full military honours and a 17-gun salute.
Several Heads of States across the world are in the country to participate in final funeral rites.
The general public on Tuesday, 11 September, between the hours of 10:00 am and 4:00pm filed past the body, to pay their last respects to the statesman.
On Wednesday, 12 September, dignitaries including recognised groups, Chiefs, Members of Parliament, Ministers of State and world leaders, took their turn to pay their last respects to the former UN boss.
Mr Annan, who was the seventh UN Secretary-General from January 1997 to December 2006, died peacefully in Switzerland on 18 August 2018 after a short illness.
Kofi Atta Annan was born in Kumasi, in Central Ghana, Africa, on April 8, 1938. Since 1960 Ghana has been a republic within the British Commonwealth, a group of nations dependent on Great Britain. Named for an African empire along the Niger River, Ghana was ruled by Great Britain for 113 years as the Gold Coast. Annan is descended from tribal chiefs on both sides of his family. His father was an educated man, and Annan became accustomed to both traditional and modern ways of life. He has described himself as being “atribal in a tribal world.”
After receiving his early education at a leading boarding school in Ghana, Annan attended the College of Science and Technology in the capital of Kumasi. At the age of twenty, he won a Ford Foundation scholarship for undergraduate studies at Macalester College in St. Paul, Minnesota, where he studied Economics. Even then he was showing signs of becoming a diplomat, or someone skilled in international relations. Annan received his Bachelor’s Degree in Economics in 1961. Shortly after completing his studies at Macalester College, Annan headed for Geneva, Switzerland, where he attended graduate classes in Economics at the Institut Universitaire Des Hautes Etudes Internationales.
Work With The UN
In 1974 he moved to Cairo, Egypt, as Chief Civilian Personnel Officer in the UN Emergency Force. Annan briefly changed careers in 1974, when he left the United Nations to serve as managing director of the Ghana Tourist Development Company.
Annan returned to international diplomacy and the United Nations in 1976. For the next seven years, he was associated with the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees in Geneva. He returned to the UN Headquarters in New York City in 1983 as Director of the Budget in the Financial Services Office. Later in the 1980s, he filled the post of Assistant Secretary-General in the Office of Human Resources Management and served as Security Coordinator for the United Nations. In 1990, he became assistant secretary-general for another department at the United Nations, the Office of Program Planning, Budget, and Finance. In fulfilling his duties to the United Nations, Annan has spent most of his adult life in the United States, specifically at the UN headquarters in New York City.
Annan had by this time filled a number of roles at the United Nations, ranging from peacekeeping to managerial, and the 1990s were no different. In 1990 he negotiated the release of hostages in Iraq, following the invasion of Kuwait. Five years later, he oversaw the transition of the United Nations Protection Force (UNPROFOR) to the Multinational Implementation Force (IFOR), a UN peacekeeping organization. In this transfer of responsibility, operations in the former Yugoslavia were turned over to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).
In recognition of his abilities, Annan was appointed Secretary-General, the top post of the UN, by the UN General Assembly in December 1996. He began serving his four-year term of office on January 1, 1997. Joining him was his second wife, former lawyer Nane Lagergren of Sweden. She is the niece of the diplomat Raoul Wallenberg (1912–c.1947), who saved thousands of European Jews from the German Nazis during World War II (1939–45), when American-led forces fought against Germany, Italy, and Japan. Annan and Lagergren were married in 1985 and had one child.
Report by Gideon Sarpong | WakeUpAfrica360