A Catholic missionary priest in Madagascar, known for serving the poor living on a landfill, has been nominated for this year’s Nobel Peace Prize.
PUBLISHED ONApr 2021
Fr. Pedro Opeka, 72, is a Vincentian priest from Argentina who has worked with the poor in Madagascar for more than three decades. He founded the Akamasoa humanitarian association in 1989 as a “solidarity movement to help the poorest of the poor” living on the site of a garbage dump.
The Akamasoa association (meaning “good friend”) has provided former homeless people and families with 4,000 brick houses and has helped to educate 13,000 children and young people.
Pope Francis visited Opeka’s “City of Friendship” built atop a rubbish dump on the outskirts of the capital city of Antananarivo during his apostolic visit to Madagascar in September 2019.
During the coronavirus pandemic, Opeka has been working to help families who have fallen even deeper into poverty as a consequence of coronavirus measures.