United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon bid an emotional farewell to his colleagues and staff on Friday, 30 December. He said that his two-term period at the global body was something of a fairy tale.
"I feel a bit like Cinderella. Tomorrow at midnight, everything changes!" he joyfully said. Ban, who served as the UN chief for a decade, is concluding his term on 31 December. Former Portuguese prime minister Antonio Guterres, 67, will be the new head of the organisation from 1 January 2017.
The former South Korean diplomat said that it was a "privilege" for him to serve an organisation that works for people and their wellbeing. "You should be very proud -- just as I am so very proud to call you my colleagues," Ban said.
The outgoing UN chief also said that, he has endeavored "to never give up. To keep dreaming, to keep believing, and to keep working hard until we achieve progress".
"I have just two words: 'Thank you!'" the departing chief said.
"Tomorrow night on the eve of the new year, I'll be in Times Square [New York] for the ball drop. Millions of people will be watching as I lose my job!'' he added.
Ban has earlier hinted that he might run for South Korean presidency. The South's parliament recently voted to impeach President Park Geun-hye over an influence-peddling scandal.
The next presidential election in South Korea is scheduled to be held in December 2017. However, a snap poll could take place within two months if the country's Constitutional Court decides to remove President Park permanently.