Addressing 500 mourners at Mr Barberini’s funeral in Bologna, Mr Macdonald said the ICA President was the unsurpassed leader of the global co-operative movement and that, since his death, messages of condolence had flooded in from all parts of the world.
Said Mr Macdonald: “It was in his ambassadorial role for ICA that Ivano particularly shone. He personified the ICA with his utter commitment to co-operative values and principles, and that message came across loud and clear wherever he went. His passion for co-operation was matched only by that for social justice and peace, and he clearly linked all three as one.”
Mr Macdonald said that when Mr Barberini took over as President in 2001 the ICA was having a difficult time, particularly financially.
But the new incumbent’s insistence on openness, transparency and financial probity had created a much more stable situation.
Commented the Director General: “The task force, which he lead from 2001, eventually achieved what many before him had tried and failed — that is a modern, progressive and decentralised ICA with the centre, regions and sectors all working together on an equal basis, and most importantly, a transparently fairer subscription system.
“There is still much to be done, but undoubtedly Ivano’s dogged approach is one of the main reasons for this success.”