‘Kofi Annan will be remembered for his dream of creating a better Africa’

Anan was the first black African to lead the UN, serving two terms between 1997 and 2006.

FILE: In this file photo taken on 30 June 2012 former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan looks on during a press conference at the United Nations office, in Geneva. Picture: AFP.

JOHANNESBURG - The Kofi Annan Foundation has described its founder as a “global statesman” who fought for a fairer and more peaceful world.

Anan, the former Secretary-General of the United Nations (UN), has died at the age of 80 after a short illness.

He was the first black African to lead the UN, serving two terms between 1997 and 2006.

Anan later served as the UN special envoy for Syria, leading efforts to find a peaceful solution to the conflict.

He will be remembered for his dream of creating a better Africa with quotes such as these.

“I’m working to create a world that is stable, that is peaceful, where we as human beings realise that we cannot consume the resources of the world the way we are doing.”

The 80-year-old continuously condemned genocides and was part of numerous attempts to mediate in war-torn countries across the world.

His family remembers him as a global statesman, one who was a deeply committed internationalist who fought throughout his life for a fairer and more peaceful world.

After stepping down from the UN, he continued his social work in the quest for peace in Africa through his foundation and as chair of The Elders, a group founded by former South African statesman Nelson Mandela.

The family has requested privacy through this time and said arrangements to celebrate his life will be announced at a later stage.

Meanwhile, the Nelson Mandela Foundation has sent its condolences to Anan's family.

CEO Sello Hatang says Annan's advocacy for peace must always be remembered.

“In his honour, all of us must stop for a second just pause and ask ourselves: what are we going to do to help build a country that they dreamt of? a continent that they dreamt of, and the world that’s at peace with itself.”

Messages of condolences are pouring in on social media with people across the world labeling him an advocate of peace.

(Edited by Thapelo Lekabe)