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The Sunhak Peace Prize for 2019
Convened in Seoul, South Korea
Awarding Akinwumi Ayodeji Adesina
& Waris Dirie
The Sunhak Peace Prize Committee held the 2019 Sunhak Peace Prize Award Ceremony on February 9 (Saturday) at 10 am, at the Jamsil Lotte Hotel World, Crystal Ballroom.
The Sunhak Peace Prize for 2019 was awarded to Dr. Akinwumi Ayodeji Adesina (58), President of the African Development Bank Group and to Waris Dirie (53), human rights pioneer in the fight against female genital mutilation (FGM). The Sunhak Peace Prize Committee announced its Laureates at a press conference held in Cape Town, South Africa, on November 22, 2011, at the Cape Town International Convention Center.
The Sunhak Committee acknowledges Dr. Akinwumi Adesina’s achievements in improving Africa’s economy by promoting Good Governance and in leading agricultural innovation for over 30 years. His achievements contributed greatly to food security in Africa, aimed at improving the lives of millions currently living in poverty in Africa.
At the Award Ceremony, each laureate received a prize of $500,000, along with a medal and a plaque, presented by the founder, Dr. Hak Ja Han Moon, and Committee Chair Dr. Il Sik Hong.
The award ceremony was attended by more than 1,000 delegates, including current and former presidents and vice presidents, leaders and entrepreneurs from Africa, among others representing various governments, academia, businesses, media, and religions.
Ambassador Kenneth M. Quinn, president of the World Food Prize Foundation, gave Congratulatory Address stating, “The two Laureates truly will bring a distinct focus on uplifting Human Rights and Human Development in Africa and thereby advance the Sunhak Peace Agenda for the Future.” Also, he emphasized, “As the second decade of the 21st Century draws to a close, it is clear that the single greatest challenge that the human species has ever confronted is that whether humanity can nutritiously and sustainably feed the 9 to 10 billion people who will be on Earth by the year 2050” and he upheld Dr. Adesina’s achievements by adding “Akinwumi Adesina was extolling the vision of how all of African agriculture can be transformed by Africans themselves and thereby bring peace to the continent.”
Through his acceptance speech, Dr. Adesina asserted that, “There cannot be peace in a world that is hungry. Awarding of the Sunhak Peace Prize is a call to do more for those least privileged around the world and especially in Africa. In addition, nothing is more important than ensuring that we feed the world and eliminate hunger and malnutrition.”
Waris Dirie asserted the Female Genital Mutilation must be eradiated in our time and she will continue to fight for girls and women’s rights until we build a society where their rights can be respected.
Chairman of the Sunhak Peace Prize Committee, Dr. Il Sik Hong, stated that “the Sunhak Peace Prize was established based upon the vision of “One Family Under God,” and the 2019 Sunhak Peace Prize gives special attention to “human rights and human development in Africa.”
Chairman Hong stated in his Welcome Address that peace can be achieved only when everyone’s human rights are protected and respected. He added that, “By observing the paths of dedication and devotion shown in the lives of this year’s laureates, we can all consider the 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.”
Meanwhile, the performance was arranged under the theme of “Proceeding Forward to the Bright Future of Africa” overcoming the global refugee crisis with respect and love for humanity.” The performers, including Sohyun Kim and Joon-ho Son, the Korean traditional arts group Little Angels and Expression Crew, created a fantastic harmony that highlighted the mood of the award ceremony.
The Sunhak Peace Prize honors individuals and organizations who have made significant contributions to the peace and the human development of the future generations. The Sunhak Peace Prize includes a cash prize totaling of one million dollars.
The two laureates are scheduled to have media interviews and events affiliated to their professional fields. They will also attend the World Summit 2019, to give keynote speeches at the special session prepared for the Laureates.