By Joshua Olomu
Nigerian music superstars, David Adeleke, also known as Davido, Divine Ikubor, popularly known as Rema and ace comedian AY Makun have been listed among the ‘100 Most Notable Peace Icons in Africa’.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the stars were named in the ‘Peace building roll call’ at an unveiling news conference by the organisers on Friday in Abuja.
Other Nigerians who made the list include former President Goodluck Jonathan, former Vice President, Prof Yemi Osibanjo; Sultan of Sokoto, Mohammadu Sa’ad Abubakar and President of the African Development Bank, Akinwumi Adeshina.
The Olu of Warri, Ogiame Atuwatse III, Cardinal John Onaiyekan, Bishop Matthew Hassan-Kukah and renowned tele-evangelist Pastor Chris Oyakhilome also made the list among others.
Amb. Kinsley Amafibe, Project Director, Africa for the 100 Most Notable Peace Icons in Africa, congratulated the artistes and other Nigerians who made the highly coveted ‘peace list’.
According to him, the peace icons are Africans drawn from different backgrounds, who have used their talents, positions and resources to build and promote peace across the continent.
He said those who made the list were painstakingly selected for their consistent commitment to humanitarian initiatives, positive influence on communities and youth empowerment, among other criteria.
“It is with immense excitement that we announce the revelation of the esteemed list titled “100 Most Notable Peace Icons in Africa.”
“This initiative stands as a testament to our commitment to acknowledging and applauding the remarkable individuals and collectives that have played key roles in nurturing peace, harmony, and positive change the African continent.
“This initiative celebrates the dedication of those who have labored continuously to reduce conflicts, advance social bond, and establish connections amidst diverse communities,” he said.
According to him, by sharing their narratives, our intention is to amplify the ripples of their endeavors, produce a collective resolve to foster a more calm and prosperous Africa.
“Within this illustrious roster of 100 Most Notable Peace Icons in Africa, we encounter a rich shade of leaders, economist, financial expert, sports personalities, religious leaders, industrialists, entertainment entrepreneurs and traditional rulers.
“They have transcended boundaries and overcome challenges to leave inerasable legacies, with each narrative as a tribute to perseverance and determination, enclosed in the cherished values of Africa – unity, harmony, and progress.
“The profiles and accomplishments of these icons are showcased on our official website, www.100mostnotable.org, a digital monument honoring their contributions across Africa and beyond,” he said.
NAN reports that other recipients of the recognition across the continent include Rwanda President, Paul Kagame, Kenyan President William Ruto, Cyril Ramaphosa, South African President and Joyce Hilda-Banda, first female President in Malawi.
Ex- Cameroonian football star Samuel Eto’o Fils, veteran Ghanaian actor John Dumelo, American-born Senegalese singer, Akon, the first lady of Namibia, Monica Geingos are also listed among the peace icons.
Amafibe said the “100 Most Notable Peace Icons in Africa” initiative stands as a celebration of hope, unity, and advancement for the continent.
He, therefore, urged Africans to unite in constructing a future, where peace and prosperity will flourish through education, empowerment, and sustainable development.
“The unveiling of this plaque transcends mere symbolism but serves as a call to action, an exhortation to perpetuate the values embodied by African Icons.
“This plaque would serve as a perpetual reminder to both present and future generations that peace entails more than the absence of conflict; it encompasses the proactive cultivation of understanding, cooperation, and shared prosperity.
“The legacy of these African Icons shall persist as a wellspring of inspiration for individuals, nations, and the entirety of the African continent,” he said.