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Kofi Annan Biography, Education, Career, Marriage & Achievements

Kofi Annan Biography, Education, Career, Marriage & Achievements –  Few persons have impacted the world the way Kofi Annan did. Kofi Atta Annan was born 8 April 1938 and died 18 August 2018. He was a Ghanaian diplomat who served as the seventh Secretary-General of the United Nations, from January 1997 to December 2006. Annan and the UN were the co-recipients of the 2001 Nobel Peace Prize. Also, he was the founder and chairman of the Kofi Annan Foundation, as well as chairman of The Elders, an international organization founded by Nelson Mandela.

On the 18th of August, he was announced dead after brief illness. The encomiums have poured in from different parts of the world, from Andorra to Zimbabwe. So, who is this man that shook the world in life and death? Let’s find out about Kofi Annan Biography, Education, Career, Marriage & Achievements.

Kofi Annan Biography, Education, Career, Marriage & Achievements

Early Years & Education

Kofi Atta Annan and his twin sister, Efua Atta, were born to Victoria and Henry Reginald Annan in Kumasi, Ghana. Henry Reginald used to work as an export manager for the Lever Brothers cocoa company. He attended the elite Mfantsipim School, a Methodist boarding school from 1954 to 1957. Annan graduated from the Mfantsipim School in 1957. As a member of the generation that witnessed their country’s independence struggle and subsequent victory, he grew up thinking that everything was possible.

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He joined the Kumasi College of Science and Technology in 1958 for a degree in economics. Receiving a Ford foundation grant enabled him to complete his undergraduate studies in economics at Macalester College in St. Paul, Minnesota in 1961. He then undertook graduate studies in economics at the Institut universitaire des hautes tudes internationales in Geneva, Switzerland from 1961 to 1962.


He began working as a Budget Officer for the World Health Organization, an agency of the United Nations (UN) in 1962. He then worked as the Director of Tourism in Ghana from 1974 to 1976. In 1980 he became the head of personnel for the office of the UN High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) in Geneva and in 1983 he became the director of administrative management services of the UN Secretariat in New York.

In the late 1980s, Annan was appointed as an Assistant Secretary-General of the UN in three consecutive positions: Human Resources, Management and Security Coordinator (1987–1990); Program Planning, Budget and Finance, and Controller (1990–1992); and Peacekeeping Operations (March 1993 – December 1996).

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When Secretary General Boutros Boutros-Ghali established the Department of Peacekeeping Operations in 1992, Annan was appointed to the new department as Deputy to then Under Secretary-General Marrick Goulding. Annan was subsequently appointed to succeed Goulding and assumed the office of USG DPKO in March 1993. He was therefore Head of peacekeeping during the battle of Somalia and the resulting collapse of the UNOSOM II peacekeeping mission, and during the Rwandan Genocide of 1994.

On 13 December 1996, the UN Security Council recommended Annan to replace the previous Secretary-General, Boutros Boutros-Ghali of Egypt, whose second term faced the veto of the United States. He then became the UN Secretary General from January 1997 to December 2006.

Marital Life

Kofi Annan Biography cannot be complete without his marital life. Annan married a Nigerian woman Titi Alakija in 1965, but they later separated in the 1970s, and divorced in 1983. They have two children, Ama and Kojo, together. He later got married to Nane Lagergren, a Swedish lawyer. She has a daughter from a previous marriage.


Annan and the UN were jointly awarded The Nobel Peace Prize in 2001 for “their work for a better organized and more peaceful world.”

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Kofi Annan Foundation

Also included in Kofi Annan Biography is his foundation. In 2007, Annan established the Kofi Annan Foundation, an independent, not-for-profit organization that works to promote better global governance and strengthen the capacities of people and countries to achieve a fairer, more peaceful world.

The organisation was founded on the principles that fair and peaceful societies rest on three pillars: Peace and Security, Sustainable Development, and Human Rights and the Rule of Law, and they have made it their mission to mobilise the leadership and the political resolve needed to tackle threats to these three pillars ranging from violent conflict to flawed elections and climate change, with the aim of achieving a fairer, more peaceful world.

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The Foundation provides the analytical, communication and co-ordination capacities needed to ensure that these objectives are achieved. Kofi Annan’s contribution to peace worldwide is delivered through mediation, political mentoring, advocacy and advice. Through his engagement, Kofi Annan aimed to strengthen local and international conflict resolution capabilities. The Foundation provides the analytical and logistical support to facilitate this in co-operation with relevant local, regional and international actors.

The Foundation works mainly through private diplomacy, where Kofi Annan provided informal counsel and participated in discreet diplomatic initiatives to avert or resolve crises by applying his experience and inspirational leadership. He was often asked to intercede in crises, sometimes as an impartial independent mediator, sometimes as a special envoy of the international community. In recent years he had provided such counsel to Burkina Faso, Kenya, Myanmar, Senegal, Iraq and Colombia.

As we have seen the Kofi Annan Biography, Education, Career, Marriage & Achievements, we at the ONLINEDAILYS join the whole world to wish the late Kofi Annan a perfect repose.


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