(Note: The information herein may be useful for Prelims and can also be used in the Essay paper on any theme related to great personalities or great leaders.)
Kofi Annan, who passed away on August 18, 2018, at the age of 80, was a Ghanaian diplomat who served as the seventh Secretary-General of the United Nations for two terms reigning from 1997 till 2006. Mr. Annan was awarded the 2001 Nobel Prize for Peace, jointly with the United Nations.
One of Mr. Annan’s main priorities as Secretary-General was a comprehensive programme of reform aimed at revitalizing the United Nations and making the international system more effective. He was a constant advocate for human rights, the rule of law, the Millennium Development Goals and Africa, and sought to bring the Organization closer to the global public by forging ties with civil society, the private sector and other partners.
It was also at Mr. Annan’s urging that, in 2005, Member States established two new intergovernmental bodies: the Peacebuilding Commission and the Human Rights Council. Mr. Annan likewise played a central role in the creation of the Global Fund to fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, the adoption of the UN’s first-ever counter-terrorism strategy, and the acceptance by Member States of the “responsibility to protect” people from genocide, war crimes, ethnic cleansing and crimes against humanity. His “Global Compact” initiative, launched in 1999, has become the world’s largest effort to promote corporate social responsibility.
Role in India:
- Appreciative of Indian Peacekeepers in Africa.
- Ardent advocate of United Nations-Security Council reforms.
- Supported greater role of developing countries such as India.