Sh5.7 million Macky Sall peacemakers award set for launch in Nairobi

Matatu Owners Association during a past campaign for peace in Mombasa, 2015. /FILE
Matatu Owners Association during a past campaign for peace in Mombasa, 2015. /FILE

A Sh5.7 million prize to recognise peacemakers will be launched in Nairobi on Tuesday.

The annual award dubbed The Macky Sall Prize for Dialogue in Africa is named after Senegalese President Macky Sall.

Sall is credited for using dialogue to avert conflicts not only in his home country but also across the African continent.

"The 50,000 Euros (Sh5.7million) prize will be awarded annually to honour and encourage all initiatives related to political and social dialogue in Africa," Joel Hakizimana, Secretary General Independent Centre for Research and Initiatives for Dialogue (CIRID), said.

"It is also destined to address a significant message to support and relay African Union (AU), regional and sub-regional organisations efforts including the Diaspora, which constitutes, according to an AU decision, the sixth geopolitical group of the continent," he added.

The inaugural Macky Sall Prize in Africa for Dialogue will be awarded in September 2017 the United Nations in Geneva by President of Senegal Macky Sall.

CIRID is a Geneva-based NGO founded in 1996 and holds the Special Consultative Status with the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations (ECOSOC) since 2008.

Founded by Deo Hakizimana, a former Burundi teacher, journalist and diplomat, CIRID works with Governments, religious and civil society institutions to develop platforms for dialogue, promote sustainable development and peace across Africa and the Diaspora.

In December 2016, the President of CIRID Hakizimana in partnership with Coly Seck, the Permanent Representative of the Republic of Senegal to the United Nations launched the award in Geneva.

Senegalese President is acclaimed for leading the African Union Commission (AUC) in resolving Burundi’s post-2015 political crisis as well in the February 2017 Gambia post-electoral crisis that supported the return of president-elect Adama Barrow that restored constitutional order in the Gambia.

President Alassane Ouattara of Ivory Coast, King Mohamed VI of Morocco, former Secretary-General of the inter-governmental organization of La Francophonie AbdouDiouf, the international artists Youssou Ndourand the UNICEF Ambassador of Good Will and African Diva AngéliqueKidjo from Benin are among supporters of the prize.