African peace ambassadors to walk away with Sh5.7m

Mediators of conflicts could walk away with Sh5.7 million in a new plan meant to encourage dialogue in Africa.

The Macky Sall Prize is named after the Senegalese president.

The €50,000-award by the Independent Centre for Research and Initiatives for Dialogue, a Geneva-based NGO but founded by Burundian journalist Deo Hakizimana, will be first given in September.

The prize committee includes Ivorian President Alassane Ouattara, King Mohamed VI of Morocco, former Secretary-General of La Francophonie Abdou Diof and Benin Unicef goodwill ambassador Angelique Kidjo.

The founders of the organisation hope the inaugural award will influence communities to discuss their differences rather than fight.

CIRID Secretary-General Joël Hakizimanatold the Nation his organisation wants to use the prize to influence leaders to support dialogue in places where guns, pangas and bombs have not brought peace.

Hakizimana said communities have been enslaved by chaos and would be more productive if there was peace.

“We can only imagine how it feels to be released from the pain of not knowing why justice cannot prevail in Burundi,” he said.

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