World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 


Call For UN To Match Hopes Of ‘African Century’

South Africa’s President Calls On UN To Match Hopes Of ‘African Century’

New York, Sep 19 2006 7:00PM

The President of South Africa today urged the United Nations to live up to the promises of an ‘African Century’ marked by renewal on a continent that has known great degrees of suffering.

Thabo Mbeki’s appeal to world leaders gathered for the General Assembly’s annual debate was echoed by a number of other African leaders calling for measures to help lift the continent’s people out of poverty.

“Those who populate the poorest part of the regions of the world – Africa – have boldly declared that it will be an African Century,” President Mbeki said. “If the wishes of the majority of the world could turn into reality, this would be a century free of wars, free of internecine conflicts, free of hunger, free of preventable disease, free of want, free of environmental degradation and free of greed and corruption.

But he warned against empty promises. “Billions of poor people are increasingly becoming impatient because every year they hear us adopt declaration after declaration, and yet nothing practical is done to assuage the hunger pains that keeps them awake at night.”

He also decried the inequalities prevailing in the world and the indifferent response of rich countries. “Something is seriously wrong when people risk life and limb travelling in suffocating containers to Western Europe in search of a better life. Something is wrong when many Africans traverse, on foot, the harsh, hot and hostile Sahara Desert to reach the European shores. Something is wrong when walls are built to prevent poor neighbours from entering those countries where they seek better opportunities.

The UN, he said, could make a significant difference. “Even as we face the cold reality of the indifference of the many among the rich and powerful, this Organization of the peoples of the world has continued to offer hope and the possibility of the fulfilment of the aspirations of the majority of the peoples of the world,” he said.

Denis Sassou-Nguesso, President of the Republic of Congo, welcomed positive developments in Africa, including the elections in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and peace consolidation in Sierra Leone, Liberia and Burundi. But he called for action to support the African Union (AU) troops in Darfur, Sudan, and appealed to the country's Government to exert all possible efforts to address this tragedy that we see unfolding before our eyes.

He also voiced support for AU efforts to seek an enlargement of the Security Council, stressing that it must be made more representative, and its working methods must be reformed.

Ghana’s President John Kufour drew attention to the scourge of small arms and light weapons, which he said had an especially devastating impact on Africa. While noting that the world is still “far from achieving” international goals for tackling the scourge, he said Ghana “welcomes the current momentum within the international community to move closer to the ultimate goal of drastically removing the menace.

President Kufour, on a more personal note, also paid tribute to his countryman, Secretary-General Kofi Annan, who this year completes his second and final five-year term at the helm of the UN. “There is no doubt that he retires with an enviable legacy of contributing immensely to shaping the destiny of this Organization and the affairs of the world, the President said. Ghana is proud and looks forward to receiving him historically home.

Ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

At The UN: Paris Climate Agreement Moves Closer To Entry Into Force

The Paris Agreement on climate change moved closer toward entering into force in 2016 as 31 more countries joined the agreement today at a special event hosted by United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. More>>

ALSO:

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The End Game In Spain (And Other World News)

The coverage of international news seems almost entirely dependent on a random selection of whatever some overseas news agency happens to be carrying overnight... Here are a few interesting international stories that have largely flown beneath the radar this past week. More>>

Amnesty/Human Rights Watch: Appalling Abuse, Neglect Of Refugees On Nauru

Refugees and asylum seekers on Nauru, most of whom have been held there for three years, routinely face neglect by health workers and other service providers who have been hired by the Australian government, as well as frequent unpunished assaults by local Nauruans. More>>

ALSO:

Other Australian Detention

Gordon Campbell: On The Censorship Havoc In South Africa’s State Broadcaster

Demands have included an order to staff that there should be no further negative news about the country’s President Jacob Zuma, and SABC camera operators responsible for choosing camera angles that have allegedly made the President ‘look shorter’ were to be retrained... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On A Bad Week For Malcolm Turnbull, And The Queen

Malcolm Turnbull’s immediate goal – mere survival – is still within his grasp... In every other respect though, this election has been a total disaster for the Liberals. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Bidding Bye Bye To Boris

Boris Johnson’s exit from the contest for Conservative Party leadership supports the conspiracy theory that he never really expected the “Leave” option to win the referendum – and he has no intention now of picking up the poisoned chalice that managing the outcome will entail... More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
World
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news