2019 Sunhak Peace Prize Awarded to Dr. Akinwumi Ayodeji Adesina

Family Federation for World Peace and Unification (FFWPU) co-founder Dr. Hak Ja Han Moon awarded one million dollars (USD) to this year’s Sunhak Peace Prize laureates, Waris Dirie and Dr. Akinwumi Ayodeji Adesina, as part of her philanthropic work. The biennial award honors individuals and organizations who have made significant contributions to the peace and welfare of future generations. The award ceremony took place on February 9, 2019 at the Lotte Hotel World in Seoul, South Korea.

As an agricultural economist, Dr. Akinwumi Adesina has been a leader in agricultural innovation for over 30 years. He has contributed greatly to food security in Africa, aimed at improving the lives of millions currently living in poverty throughout the African continent. The Sunhak Committee acknowledges Dr. Adesina’s achievements and contributions to Africa’s recent dramatic growth and development.

“This Prize is not about me. No one should ever work to win a prize. I serve God and humanity. For my life is only useful to the extent to which it helps to lift millions out of poverty. But when one’s effort is recognized, then one is very humbled…The Sunhak Peace Prize is a call to do more for our world – and I will,” stated Dr. Adesina during his acceptance speech.

Dr. Adesina has been a leader in agricultural innovation in Africa for over 30 years, pioneering major transformations in the agricultural field, including expanding rice production by introducing high yielding technologies, designing and implementing policies to support farmers’ access to technologies at scale, increasing the availability of credit for millions of smallholder farmers, attracting private investments for the agricultural sector, rooting out corrupt elements in the fertilizer industry, and assisting in the establishment of major agricultural policies for Africa’s green revolution.

The “Africa Fertilizer Summit,” which he organized in 2006, was one of the largest high-level meetings in history that had a focus on solving Africa’s food issues. During the Summit, Dr. Adesina was instrumental in developing the “Abuja Declaration on Fertilizer for the African Green Revolution,” whereby the participants stated their commitment to the “eradication of hunger in Africa by 2030.”

He worked with various banks and international NGOs in order to create an innovative financing system, providing loans to smallholder farmers. This move leveraged $100 million in loans and provided opportunities for smallholder farmers to increase their agricultural productivity and their income.

Dr. Adesina currently serves as the president of the African Development Bank Group, which plays a central role in the continent’s development. As an “economic commander” of Africa, he promotes the “High 5 Strategy”: light up and power Africa; feed Africa; industrialize Africa; integrate Africa and improve the quality of life for the people of Africa.

For more information about the Sunhak Peace Prize and this year’s laureates, please visit sunhakpeaceprize.org.