Malala Yousafzai has currently become the youngest person in history to receive the UN Messenger of Peace award.
On Monday UN Sec. Gen. accorded her the honors to promote girl’s education; a cause she has dedicated her life to.
The award is the highest honor given to a citizen by the United Nations. Malala has joined the league of current Messengers of Peace like Leonardo di Caprio (climate change), Charlize Theron (prevention of HIV and elimination of violence against women), and Michael Douglas (disarmament).
Malala is an activist for female education and the youngest-ever Nobel Prize laureate in 2014.
Wikipedia describes her as “That Pakistani girl who keeps winning Nobel Prizes.” She has been honored with over 40 national and international awards.
It cannot be argued much that the 19 year old is indeed the most famous youngster in the world. Malala’s greatness was born from her fight at a much younger age to challenge a local anti-education Taliban in Pakistan.
Malala Yousafzai was born on 12 July 1997. Her father, Ziauddin Yousafzai was an education advocate. It is in line to say that the young lady took to her father’s passion for children education.
The Pakistani girl is everything you want to know about human rights activism and the fight for girl child education.
Between the ages of 11–12, Malala blogged under a pseudonym for the BBC Urdu. She kept the world informed on the happenings in her region which was under the tutelage of an extremist group that banned girl child education.
The Taliban had taken over her native hometown, Swat Valley in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, northwest Pakistan.
Gradually the teenager’s blogging identity was no longer hidden as she made media appearances, castigating the ban on educating females in Pakistan.
Malala was shot by a Taliban group that decided to kill her for audaciously challenging the Islamic law that condemns educating the girl child.
Disturbed by her push for education which was evidently getting international attention, the Taliban decided to kill her.
On October 9, 2012, the young lady was accosted with her friends on their way home from school. Malala was shot in the head while the other girls sustained injuries.
The multi-international award winner was gravely injured. The bullet had damaged the left portion of her brain.
Malala Yousafzai hung on and was saved against all odds.
“After a five-hour operation, doctors successfully removed the bullet, which had lodged in her shoulder near her spinal cord.”
Her attack sparked off criticisms and condemnation on both national and international level.
It is ironic that an attack that was supposed to silence the young lady ended up making her stronger and all the more vocal against human right abuses in Pakistan and other parts of the world.
“The terrorists thought they would change my aims and stop my ambitions, but nothing changed in my life except this: weakness, fear and hopelessness died. Strength, power and courage was born…”
Pressured by the international outcry, Pakistani Muslim Clerics issued a fatwā against those who tried to kill her.
After her recovery Malala became twice the international personality that she was.
Time magazine featured her as one of the most Influential people in the world for 3 consecutive years(2013-2015).
She founded the Malala Fund, a non-profit that promotes girl child education. The multi-lingual brave girl inspired the Oscar-shortlisted documentary, He Named Me Malala.
Malala Yousafzai says she is inspired by some of the world’s greatest men like Martin Luther King, Nelson Mandela and Muhammad Ali Jinnah
“I have a new dream … I must be a politician to save this country. There are so many crises in our country. I want to remove these crises.”