By Godwill Arthur-Mensah, GNA
Accra, Sept. 12, GNA - The Mfantsipim Old Boys Association (MOBA) on Wednesday, took their turn to pay a memorial farewell honour to their departed fellow, Kofi Atta Annan.
It was, indeed, a touching moment at the Accra International Conference Centre, when they sang the song on their school motto, “Dwen Hwe Kan”, which inspires thoughtfulness and foresight.
And with the tributes that have poured in since the passing of Ghana’s illustrious son on August 18, 2018, there is no doubt that the Seventh United Nations Secretary-General, who once sat on the floor of the School’s first black headmaster’s office to take his weekly lessons in Spoken English, literally lived out his alma mater’s motto.
“He was the shining light of Africa; he has left behind millions and millions of blazing bright spots in every corner of the world,” Mr Michel Sidebe, the Executive Director of UNAIDS, has said in an article that captures it all.
“An African at heart, a global citizen in truth, Kofi Annan symbolised the best of humanity. As United Nations Secretary General, his contributions to society spanned across continent and covered multiple issues. He was a rabble rouser, trouble-shooter, change-maker-all combined in one.”
Thus when the Reverend W.T. Balmer, the man accredited with nurturing the School, from 1907, to give it a solid foundation and a future, declared, “I want to raise a generation of men from Mfantsipim School who will be bold enough to face the problems of their own continent practically and un-selfishly, he might have envisaged the likes on Kofi Annan.
Mr Goosie Tanoh, an alumnus, told the Ghana News Agency in an interview that Kofi Annan’s passing was ‘a big loss to Ghana and the world.’
The global statesman, he said, lived an outstanding life, and expressed his resolve to emulate his values and sterling leadership qualities.
Mr Annan passed away peacefully in the Swiss city of Bern, after a brief illness.
He was aged 80.
He was the UN Secretary-General from January 1997 to 2006, leading a number of reforms at the global body.
He successfully negotiated peace deals in many countries plagued with conflicts and wars.
In 2001, he was co-recipient of the Noble Peace Price with the UN.
He initiated the Millennium Development Goals to minimise poverty around the world.
Upon his retirement from UN, he was appointed as a special envoy to Syria and led UN Commission to negotiate for peace during the Rohingya crisis in September 2016.
He was survived by a wife, Nane Maria Lagergren, and three children, Kojo, Ama and Nina.