Covid-19: Ban Ki-moon calls for peace

Seoul, Korea. Former UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has joined world leaders to aim for peace in the face of the Covid-19.

According to him, the pandemic is threatening to plunge the world into struggles with conflicts over territory and resources, religious and racial discord, and the collapse of family values, and climate change, among other challenges.

“It is time the world built bridges, not to erect walls in order to have a unified world,” he said adding that “Covid-19 has indeed become a grave threat to humanity.”

Mr Ban who is the chairman of the National Council on Climate and Air Quality, Korea, made the call in his opening address at the online forum organized by the Universal Peace Federation.

He said the world has seen the intensification of unsettling trends in the wake of the global crisis.

These include the growing tension between the US and China, which will have global implications; rising nationalism and protectionism which result in countries to shift away from multilateralism and international cooperation; threat of climate change that undermine health and security of humanity; and a crisis in values, ethics and social capital that underpin good governance and stable societies.

“If we fail to unite as one world community, our very existence will be threatened,” he said.

“Peace is not an issue that is exclusive to one individual or a nation. Peace is our common wish and a long-cherished desire. I believe that lasting peace will only get stronger when governments and civil society closely partner with one another.”

“Now is the time for us to build bridges, not to erect walls. If we work together, there is no challenge that is too great, no obstacle that cannot be overcome.”

The rally had President of Senegal, Macky Sall, and the Prime Minister of Niger, Brigi Rafini, delivering the keynote addresses, and goodwill messages by Spiritual Advisor to President Donald Trump, Rev Paula White.

Africa called for peace

According to Senegalese president, Macky Sall, the rally came at an unprecedented time in history, when the whole world was bearing the brunt of the brutal impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.

“In addition to being a major crisis, the virus has deeply disrupted our living conditions and our social relations. Education systems are in jeopardy, economics at half-mast, companies are in trouble and workers face a precarious situation. The Covid-19 pandemic ignores borders as well as social, ideological and geopolitical considerations,” he said. (Agencies)

On his part, Niger President, Brigi Rafini, who noted that Covid-19 has had significant impact on the geopolitical balance of power and economy, explained that Africa must confront not only the pandemic but also need to revive its economy.

“This fight on two fronts requires an exceptional mobilisation of financial resources,” he said.