The Nobel Peace Prize Watch president Jurist Fredrik Heffermehl says the Nobel Peace Prize has been misused by Norwegian politicians and does not serve its intended purpose anymore.
And Heffermehl says it is difficult to indicate whether or not Dr Kenneth Kaunda is eligible for the prestigious Nobel Peace Prize until it sees the reasons advanced for the nomination of Zambia’s first Republican president.
In an interview, Tuesday, Heffermehl explained that the misuse of the well-intended recognition had led to the establishment of an alternative committee to scrutinise all nominations for the Prize.
“…The Norwegian politicians entrusted with the prize have been misusing it for a century or so for other purposes than intended, so therefore, we have started an alternative secretariat for the committee. The Nobel committee has a secretariat but they are adamant not to obey the will and Nobel’s intention. They actually don’t want to hear about Nobel at all. And they also voted in the Norwich parliament which is appointing the Nobel peace prize committee, the five member committee that decides who shall win the price and it was proposed last year that they must consider the intention of Nobel and this was rejected by 98.7 per cent of parliament. We are running an organization that is critical and the official committee. We are trying to get the prize respected and actually the intention of the Nobel.”
And Heffermehl says it has not yet seen Dr Kaunda’s nomination to the Nobel Institute.
He said he did not see what the reasons were for nominating Dr Kaunda despite his historic record of great importance.
“I am sure there has been a nomination but we have not seen it. I am sure they have entered a nomination with the Nobel committee; we have not seen it and we therefore have not had a chance to evaluate whether he is qualified or not, whether he qualifies with the intention of Nobel or not. I am absolutely open to it, I might be interested to receive the nomination and be able to read it and evaluate it. We have 36 candidates qualified to win and he may be number 37 but I would like to see his nomination,” said Heffermehl.
“If they say he has been nominated, I truly believe them but I would like to see the nomination because I understand that Kaunda is a very important figure and is a great person and that he has a historic record of great importance but I cannot tell what the reason for nominating him is and how he relates to the will. For instance, why we recognized last year’s winner Abiy Ahmed, as a glorious winner of the peace prize, but the question I raised is whether he is suited for the Nobel peace prize and that was not so well explained by the committee because they have not shown his importance for the peace. They have shown his tremendous importance for local peace in Africa and that is great but the Nobel peace prize was more ambitious because it was directed at world peace and therefore, the committee should have shown that Ahmed practiced ideas, principles, or had visions that point to a global peace order, that was the only thing that was missing,”