By Bukar Bolori
Staff members of the United Nations in Nigeria on Monday joined their counterparts across all duty stations in the world to observe a minute of silence in memory of the UN staff who tragically lost their lives in the ongoing Israeli-Hamas war in Gaza.
Acting UN Resident Coordinator, and Resident Representative of UNDP, Mohamed Yahya, said at a brief ceremony marked with the UN flag lowered at half-mast, at the UN House Abuja that: “It is with great sadness that we join all UN personnel around the world in all duty stations to observe a minute of silence today, Monday 13 November, 2023 to mourn and honor our colleagues who were killed in Gaza.
“As you can see, the UN flag has been lowered to half-mast as a mark of respect on this solemn occasion.
“I would like to request all of us to observe a minute of silence as we honor our fallen colleagues.”
He further urged all staff members to participate in the solemn observance, emphasising the importance of honouring the memory of those who made the ultimate sacrifice in service to humanity.
According to a statement, in compliance, a minute of silence was also observed by 86 staff members participating in the UN Nigeria Programme Management Team retreat taking place in Niger State.
At exactly 1.30 p.m, participants at the retreat rose to observe a minute of silence in honour of fallen colleagues in Gaza.
Following the moment of silence, Yahya concluded his message with a heartfelt wish: “May their souls rest in peace.”
Slightly over 100 UN staff members have been killed so far in the ongoing war in Gaza.