Prayer Service Held in Memory of the Late Ethiopian PM in New York
On Oct 27, 2012 many of the world leaders and renowned professionals and educators were at a prayer service held in memory of PM Meles Zenawi at The Abyssinian Baptist Church of New York.
Few among those present were, H. E. Ban Ki-moon, H. E. Ambassador Susan Rice, H. E. Ambassador Jean-Francis Zinsou, Ms. Gayle Smith, H. E. Ambassador Jendayi Frazer, H. E. Ambassador Tibor P. Nagy, Professor Jeffrey Sachs and Professor Akbar Noman.
Mr Meles died at the age of 57 in Brussels, following a long illness.
He came to power in 1991 and was credited for bringing development and growth to Ethiopia.
But critics say this was achieved at the cost of respect for human rights.
The Service was very well attended by members of the diplomatic core, high officials of the UN, current and former US officials, former US Ambassadors to Ethiopia, members of the acadamicia (inc) and most importantly members of the Ethiopian community. All spoke eloquently about the person they knew very well; about his unpretentious nature, his world class intellect, his mastery of subjects, his leadership on matters of importance to his beloved country and Africa.
A similar article has been posted at ERTA website, copied and pasted below:
Meles Zenawi Remembered in Harlem, New York
Hundreds of friends and colleagues of the late Prime Minister Meles Zenawi came together on Saturday for a memorial service at The Abyssinian Baptist Church in Harlem, New York’s historically African-American outpost.
Meles passed away on August 20 and a number of services were held in his memory, most significantly in Ethiopia.
This is the first service ever to be held on this scale on American soil involving a mix of UN personnel, past and present American government officials, leading scholars, and a large group of Ethiopians from across the US. And one of the most prominent public figures was none other than the chief of the world’s body, Ban Ki-moon.
Ban Ki-moon said that he was unable to attend the funeral service in Addis Ababa bus had sent his deputy to represent him. However, Susan Rice, the Permamnet Representative of the US to the United Nations, whose friendship with Meles dates back to the mid 1990s was in Addis Ababa on that momentous day. Again, she was here at the church to deliver yet another moving eulogy
Ethiopia’s Permanent Representative to the UN, Dr. Tekeda Alemu underscored on the occasion that what many people do not know was that Ethiopia has changed dramatically in the last twenty years primarily because of Meles.
The tributes, that focused on Meles’ desire and commitment to tackle poverty inside Ethiopia was aptly told in the testimonies of economists who had followed developments in Ethiopia in the last two decades. Among them are Jeffrey Sachs and Akbar Noman from Columbia University.
15 people presented their testimonials in the three-hour service led by the Church’s Pastor, Reverend Calvin Butts.
The service was boosted by musical interlude presented by the Church’s choir including a saxophonist’s rendition of Bob Marley’s “Redemption Song”.