Kofi Annan left a legacy of love, tolerance, generosity and gender equality. As the co-recipients of the 2001 Nobel Peace Prize, Kofi Annan was born on April 8, 1938 in Kumasi, Ghana and died on 18 August, 2018. Here are a few lessons we can learn from the African hero.
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10 Lessons You Can Learn From Kofi Annan
1. We have to Confront Ignorance with knowledge
“Ignorance and prejudice are the handmaidens of propaganda. Our mission, therefore, is to confront ignorance with knowledge, bigotry with tolerance, and isolation with the outstretched hand of generosity. Racism can, will, and must be defeated”
The only way to defeat ignorance is with knowledge and tolerance
2. Women’s equality is a prerequisite for development
“More countries have understood that women’s equality is a prerequisite for development.
Gender equality is more than a goal in itself. It is a precondition for meeting the challenge of reducing poverty, promoting sustainable development and building good governance”
To achieve sustainable development, women should be given a chance to participate fully in decision making.
3. We always have a choice
“To live is to choose. But to choose well, you must know who you are and what you stand for, where you want to go and why you want to get there.”
Life will always present us with choices, we must learn to choose well and bear the consequences of our choice always.
4. Education is the premise of progress
“Knowledge is power. Information is liberating. Education is the premise of progress, in every society, in every family”
Education is the software of the society, to get it right we must equip our mind and our people with the needed skills that will help us and help them succeed in this changing economy
“Education is a human right with immense power to transform. On its foundation rest the cornerstones of freedom, democracy and sustainable human development.”
5. The problem is not with the faith, but with the faithful
“The problem is not with the faith, but with the faithful”
The problem of the World is not because of faith, but the faithful, we must live our lives as a true reflection of our faith.
6. Tolerance is the key
“We may have different religions, different languages, different colored skin, but we all belong to one human race.”
The earlier we begin and accept to tolerate each other, the better for all of us.
7. If you must err, let it be on the side of freedom and liberty
“If one is going to err, one should err on the side of liberty and freedom.”
8. Always think of the Future
“We need to think of the future and the planet we are going to leave to our children and their children.”
Don’t take your eyes off the future. Always think of what you are going to leave behind for your children and their children
9. If Leaders fail to lead, followers must learn to lead
“I have always believed that on important issues, the leaders must lead. Where the leaders fail to lead, and people are really concerned about it, the people will take the lead and make the leaders follow.”
Leadership is not position, leadership is service. If a leader fail to serve, the people have the duty to show him how to serve.
10. Change is a process which has to be managed.
“If citizens do not believe they can change their leaders through the ballot box, they will find other ways, even at the risk of destabilizing their countries”
Change is not instant, it’s a gradual process that takes take and planing.