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Ban Ki-Moon lays UN House bombing commemorative wreath, decries terrorism


Ban Ki-Moon

Ban Ki-Moon

The UN Secretary-General, Ban Ki-Moon, on Monday laid a wreath at the UN House, Abuja to commemorate the 4th anniversary of the UN House, Abuja terror attack.

The attack by Boko Haram on Aug. 27, 2011 killed 23 UN staff while many were injured.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the Boko Haram attack on the UN House took place on Aug. 27, 2011.

“We pay tribute to the 23 fallen colleagues, women and men who were so brutally stolen from us. We reaffirm our commitment to keep faith with their families.

“Our fallen colleagues and partners will be remembered this morning with moments of silence in many places.

“But nowhere are the memories of these colleagues more immediate, more vivid and more compelling than here in Abuja. We will remember them forever as truly the best of humanity.

“We join the families in prayers for the eternal rest of the souls of the departed and for long and healthy lives for the injured survivors”, he said.

Ban said he would meet with some of those who were injured in the attack.

“We also recognise the extraordinary fortitude and determination of the survivors, many of whom suffered terrible injury and trauma.

“I commend them for the courage that they continue to show in healing, and in working for a better world,” he said.

The UN scribe thanked the Federal Government of Nigeria for its commitment to rebuild the UN House “as a symbol of the resilience of our extraordinary cooperation”.

“The terrorists attacked the United Nations and destroyed many lives of many colleagues, but we have a mandate to build.

“We have a mandate to better the lives of people in need; to conquer hunger, disease and illiteracy; to promote respect for people’s rights, human rights, and freedoms,” he said.

The secretary-general also commended the workers for their resilience in spite of the difficult conditions in which they to work.

“`I know you are working hard. I ask you to work even harder. You are the face of the United Nations. We are living in a period of frugality.

“I am asking you to do more with less, I am sorry to say so as Secretary-General. But be proud of your work, your mission, you are working for humanity.

“Working together, let us honour our fallen colleagues in the best way possible by working together to build a better future for the people of Nigeria and people of the world,” he said.

Ban expressed solidarity with President Muhammadu Buhari’s efforts to tackle corruption and ensure good governance, saying `this is a vital time in the history of Nigeria’.

“Later today, I will meet His Excellency, President Buhari, and will express my strong encouragement and solidarity for his efforts to tackle insecurity, unemployment and corruption,” he said.

He explained that the UN was at a vital moment in its work to promote the sustainable development agenda and build a life of dignity for all.

“Last month, the international community agreed on a framework for financing sustainable development in Addis Ababa.

“This month, member states negotiators finalised the blueprint for a sustainable development agenda aiming to 2030, including through a set of 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

“These 17 SDGs will be adopted by world leaders next month, when President Buhari will participate,” he said.
Ban arrived in Nigeria on Sunday on a two-day official visit and held talks with state governors on “Pathways to a New Nigeria – the Role of Sub-national Governments”.

He would later have a lunch with members of the business community on the theme: “The Role of Nigeria Business and the Economy in

Implementing the Sustainable Development Goals and Addressing Climate Change”.

Ban is also billed to deliver a keynote address at a “Dialogue on Democracy, Human Rights, Development, Climate Change and Countering Violent Extremism” to be chaired by Vice-President, Yemi Osinbajo.

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