2019 Sunhak Peace Prize Award Ceremony Welcome Address by Chairman Il Sik Hong
Dear Excellencies, Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen,
It is a great pleasure for me to welcome all of you who have come to this Award Ceremony to congratulate and encourage the laureates of the Sunhak Peace Prize for 2019. In particular, the presence of distinguished leaders and representatives from around the world, including current and former heads of state and special guests from Africa, brings great value to this program.
First of all, I would like to express my sincere admiration to the two laureates of the 2019 Sunhak Peace Prize. I congratulate them for their tremendous achievements in devoting their lives for a world of peace for all humanity.
To honor the legacy of the late Reverend Dr. Sun Myung Moon, Dr. Hak Ja Han Moon established the Sunhak Peace Prize as an extension of his work for peace. Reverend and Mrs. Moon have dedicated their lives to building a global community based on their vision of “One Family Under God,” which emphasizes interdependence, mutual prosperity and universal values. Especially after Reverend Moon’s ascension in 2012, Mrs. Moon has been actively expanding this work with the purpose of creating a peaceful future of Africa.
Excellencies, Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen,
The 2019 Sunhak Peace Prize has as its theme “Peace and Human Development in Africa.” When we reflect upon peace and human development, putting down the weapons of war is only one step toward building world peace. Peace can be achieved only when everyone’s human rights are protected and respected.
The two winners of the Sunhak Peace Prize, Dr. Akinwumi Adesina and Ms. Waris Dirie, have devoted their lives to protecting the world’s most vulnerable people.
Dr. Akinwumi Adesina has promoted a vision of good governance for African nations. He has implemented innovative agricultural policies all across Africa, dedicated to a future filled with hope.
Waris Dirie has improved the rights of millions of girls and women by leading a campaign to eradicate tragic act of female genital mutilation.
By observing the paths of dedication and devotion shown in the lives of this year’s laureates, we can see how courage and leadership can steer the world’s communities one step closer to peace and prosperity.
When we reflect on where we are standing at this moment, we understand that we are already heading toward the middle of the 21st century. Therefore, I want to encourage everyone to constantly consider practices that will work for the betterment of our future. Such conscientious introspection will bring about good deeds, which will build up one by one and open a new chapter of world peace, prologue to a new history.
The Sunhak Peace Prize will continuously seek out brave men and women who love humanity and work to build world peace based upon the vision of “One Family Under God” and “Making the World Better for Future Generations.”
Finally, I want to express my sincere appreciation to all the distinguished guests.
I send you my best wishes and ask that peace live in your families.