Senegal leader and ex UN secretary-general get R30m in prize money
Seoul, South Korea - Senegalese President Macky Sall has dedicated his 2020 Sunhak Peace Prize to the people of his country.
It comes with $1 000 000, about R15 000 000, prize money.
Recently, Sall was awarded the fourth Sunhak Peace Prize from the Universal Peace Federation (UPF) alongside Bishop Munib A Younan, the international honorary president of Religions of Peace.
The award ceremony was also part of the celebrations of the centenary of the the birth of UPF founder Reverend Dr Sun Myung Moon centenary who died in 2012.
This year’s award focused on interdependence, mutual prosperity and universal values. Senegal hosted the first Summit of the Universal Peace Federation in January 2018.
Senegal minister of Foreign Affairs Amadou Ba accepted the award on behalf of Sall.
In a video accepting the award, Sall said he would a donate half of the one million dollars in prize money to the African Union Peace Fund.
“Beyond my modest person, this prize is therefore a tribute to the Senegalese people. Thus, I dedicate the prize to the people of Senegal.
“As I accept this award, I also think of all those people whose peace is confiscated by violence and the vagaries of life. I am thinking of victims of war and terrorism, racism and racial discrimination simply because of their origin or the colour of their skin. I am thinking of those who, living in extreme poverty and social exclusion, cannot satisfy even the vital need to feed themselves,” he said.
Sall received his award for shortening the presidential term from seven to five years and reviving the Senegalese economy.
Ba also announced that UPF co-founder Dr Hak Ja Han Moon was awarded the order of merit, the highest order in Senegal.
Dr Hong Il-sik, chairman of the Sunhak Prize Peace committee, said peace could only be achieved when a peaceful global community in which all nations live together in prosperity and in respect of each other is realized.
“In a world that is becoming more and more divided, we must act swiftly to foster a culture of peace. We need to move beyond the interest of personal and narrower gain toward creating a new culture or peace for the sake of humanity’s future fate.”
The laureates were given a 175gram gold medal, a plaque and one million dollars.
"Younan was recognized for his 40-years of work to promote peace among Jews, Christians and Muslims in the Middle East and in particular trying to resolve the Israeli-Palestine conflict.
“World leaders today talk about our shared security but I challenge them instead to talk about our shared wellbeing. Certainly we must at least insist that our children have violence free schools, neighborhoods and societies,” Younan said.
Former United Nations secretary-general Ban Ki-Moon was awarded the Founders’ Centenary Award for his work in climate change and fighting for equality across the world.
In accepting the award, Ki-Moon said: “Under this backdrop of instability and waning internationalism, I firmly believe that we must work together through expanded partnerships and cooperation, as well as a driving commitment to global citizenship, to cope with these seemingly insurmountable challenges.”
In attendance at the ceremony in Seoul were several heads of states including former Nigerian Presidents Goodluck Jonathan and Olusugen Obasanjo and former president of Kiribati Anote Tong.