The members of the Executive Committee and the entire EMRC team are saddened to inform you of the passing away on Thursday 23rd April 2015 of Professor Pierre Mathijsen, President of EMRC from 1994 to 2013 and Honorary President until his demise.
There is no doubt that Pierre Mathijsen contributed to our activities through his leadership, expertise and rigour and profoundly inspired us to pursue our mission. Pierre Mathijsen, a lawyer by profession, was a man of unequalled determination, and a professor of European law.
After ending his mandate as Director General of DGXVI (Regional Policy) of the European Commission (1977-1986) and as member of the Administrative Council of the European Investment Bank, he dedicated much of his time to the development of emerging countries by presiding at the helm of EMRC.
Throughout the years he actively led and participated in positioning EMRC on the world stage and contributed a great deal to the EMRC forums in Africa and Europe.The entire team is proud to have worked alongside Pierre Mathijsen and to have witnessed his insatiable positive energy; we are most grateful to his immense contribution to the organization.
He will be fondly remembered for being an independent spirit who until the very end challenged and guided us to fulfil the goals set up by EMRC 20 years ago. His attitude towards Africa was very succinct and as he always said, "Africa is coming up, Africa is the future. Africa needs to fight for its place in the world and the weapon it has is its young generation.” This simple approach led EMRC to further develop its activities and establish the now renowned Project Incubator Award and the trainings.
A true believer in Africa’s potential, Pierre Mathijsen’s positive outlook and drive will no doubt encourage us all to continue pursuing the organisation’s ambitions. His spirit will be remembered and cherished for the years to come.
To his memory.