Kofi Atta Annan

Kofi Atta Annan

Former United Nations Secretary General (1997-2007)

Date of Birth: 8/4/1938
Place of Birth: Kumasi

Married with three children

Education: BA Economics, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi, (final year, Macalester College, Minnesota, United States), 1958-61; MA International Relations, Institut de Hautes Etudes Internationales et du Développement, Geneva, Switzerland, 1961-62; MSc Management, MIT Sloan School of Management, Massachusetts, USA, 1971-72.

Career: Administrative & Budget Officer and various positions, World Health Organization, Geneva, Switzerland, 1962-74; Director of Tourism, Ministry of Tourism & Diasporean Relations, Ghana, 1974-76; Assistant Secretary General, Human Resources Management & Security Coordinator, 1987-90; Assistant Secretary General, Programme Planning Budget & Finance, 1990-92; Assistant Secretary General, Peacekeeping Operations, 1993-94; Under-Secretary General, Office of the Under-Secretary General, 1994-95; Special Representative of the Secretary General to the former Yugoslavia, Office of the Secretary General, 1995-96; Under-Secretary General, 1996; United Nations Secretary General, 1997-2007: United Nations; Chancellor of the University of Ghana, 2007 to date.

Former United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan is taking African advocacy directly to Asia, as he takes up his appointment as Li Ka-shing Professor at the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy. After calling on Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, Annan delivered a speech at the National University of Singapore on 26 February. Annan commended Asian governments that base their legitimacy on delivering development – a gentle formulation that includes authoritarian and democratic governments alike. But by the end of the speech, Annan was pushing hard for African engagement that was transparent, fair and sustainable. He then travelled to Indonesia to meet President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono and address the Association of Southeast Asian Nations Secretariat.

Annan worked at the World Health Organisation and as Ghana’s Director of Tourism before joining the UN. He became Assistant Secretary General in 1987, serving roles in human resources, budget and finance, and peacekeeping operations. As Secretary General (1997-2007), he prioritised development and security. The UN Peacebuilding Commission and the Human Rights Council were established on his watch. The Millenium Development Goals were adopted in 2000 and the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria was set up in 2002.

Annan’s post-UN years have been active. He is Chairman of the Mo Ibrahim Prize Committee for African leadership and is also a member of Nelson Mandela’s Global Elders. The Elders are former global leaders ‘who offer their collective influence and experience to support peace building, help address major causes of human suffering and promote the shared interests of humanity’. 

Displaying 1-10 out of 182 results.

Vol 54 N0 24


Deficit blues

This change of heart came as Emmanuel Kwesi Aning, the forthright Director of the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Centre in Accra, warned that government might lack the capacity to monitor and police a national strike...

Vol 54 N0 21


African Union challenges the ICC

Others are far more critical of her unwillingness to listen to the views of fellow South African Desmond Tutu and former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan, who warn that the decisions in Addis Ababa could fatally weaken the Court...

Vol 54 N0 18


The Court lowers the curtain

Three days after the judgement, Kofi Annan, the former United Nations Secretary General, weighed in with a call for electoral reform to tackle the complaints raised in the case...

Vol 54 N0 13


Transparency's clear win

Brendan O’Donnell of the Global Witness Oil Campaign called it a huge victory for transparency and Kofi Annan’s Africa Progress Panel welcomed the move...

Vol 54 N0 12


Bringing it all back home

Time pressing for Ruto In 2008, supporters of Kenyatta and Ruto campaigned to derail efforts to establish a credible local tribunal to try those accused of organising the post-election violence (AC Vol 50 No 15, Kofi Annan puts politicians on the spot over poll violence, Kenyan politicians face new deadline & The CIPEV's recommendations)...

Vol 54 N0 11


Gertler’s assets multiply

APP’s board is headed by former United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan and includes the International Monetary Fund ex-Managing Director, Michel Camdessus; the Prudential insurance company’s Group CEO, Tidjane Thiam (AC Vol 40 No 2, Abidjan's anglos); and former United States Treasury Secretary Robert Rubin...

Vol 54 N0 5


Jubilee aims to win it in one

Strong statements from interested parties such as the United States, Britain and former United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan have failed to calm passions and only deepened the divide between the two main coalitions, whose candidates are pretty evenly balanced...

Vol 54 N0 5


Pitfalls ahead for foreigners

One of the most controversial was by United Nations ex-Secretary General Kofi Annan, who remains a major figure in Kenya because he helped negotiate the power-sharing deal that ended the political crisis in 2008...

Vol 54 N0 3


Holding their breath

The risk of international isolation was made clear in public by former United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan and in private by outgoing United States Secretary of State Hillary Clinton...

Vol 53 N0 25


Shotgun wedding season

A recent veiled warning by AU mediator Kofi Annan brought home the threat of international isolation should Kenyatta triumph in March...

Displaying 1-10 out of 182 results.