Sunday, April 07, 2013

The Meles Zenawi Foundation Launched

(Apr 06, 2013, Addis Ababa))--The Meles Zenawi Foundation Launching Congress held on Saturday in Addis Ababa at the Headquarters of the Africa Union (AU).

The Foundation’s Launching Congress was attended by Presidents of Sudan, Uganda and Djibouti: Omar Hassan al-Bashir, Yoweri Kaguta Museveni and Ismail Omar Guelleh respectively, and Prime Minister of Somalia Abdi Farah Shirdon. Also among the attendants were former president of Nigeria, Olusegun Obasanjo and AUC Commissioner Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, senior Ethiopian government officials, families of the late Meles Zenawi and invited guests.

Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn in his opening remarks said Meles is a mature leader who has worked out a clear direction for the Ethiopian nation to come out of dictatorship and poverty. Meles is a leader who managed to get Africa’s voice heard across the globe, Hailemariam said, adding, not only the present-day generation but also others to come ought to learn from his life, work and discipline.

Former Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo said we celebrate him for his committed service to his country, the continent and the world. He said Meles represented Africa in various international forums because of his outstanding leadership.

Sudanese President, Omar al-Bashir stressed the need to nurture and elaborate up on the visions of Meles through an intensive research. He stated peace, security and development was the theme of Meles’ dialogue.

President of Uganda Yoweri Museveni for his part described the late Meles as independent minded, courageous, aggressive in development programs, patriotic, pan-Africanist, confident and determined to development of Africa. He said Meles was aware of the bottlenecks of Africa’s development and strategies to address them.

Djibouti President, Omar Guelleh in his speech said Meles always envisioned a bright future for his people and the region at large and fought for that vision to come true. He was not satisfied even after registering continuous double digit economic growth, he said. Prime Minister of Somalia Abdi Farah Shirdon for his part said Meles worked to bring peace and stability in Africa, particularly in East Africa: Sudan and Somalia.

AU Commissioner Dlamini Zuma said “every encounter with him was a lesson”. As we celebrate the 50th anniversary of AU we should remember his contribution to Africa only by making what he did to continue, she said. Former first lady, Azeb Mesfin for her part thanked the attendants for taking part in the launching of the Meles Zenawi Foundation and also highlighted the function of the Foundation.

All the speakers highlighted the aspirations, works and legacies of the visionary leader Meles Zenawi at country, continent and international levels and stressed the need to uphold them at all levels. The Congress has also reflected upon the works and life of the visionary leader Meles Zenawi. The Meles Zenawi Foundation is dedicated to preserving and advancing the legacy of the Great Leader Meles Zenawi in his lifelong commitment to peace, justice, economic development, good governance, and democracy for the Ethiopian and African peoples.

On the occasion, Uganda, Djibouti, South Sudan and Sudan have pledged $300 thousand, $500 thousand, $1 million and $2 million in that order for the foundation. Over 1173 participants drawn from various sections of the society including elders, opposition party leaders, students, sportspersons, artists, pastoralists and farmers, among others, attended the Launching Congress.
Source: ERTA (Government of Ethiopia)

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Ethiopia’s Meles Foundation leaves activists angry

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