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General News of Friday, 16 October 2015

Source: GNA

Ghana calls for renewed commitment to UN

Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ms Hanna Serwaa Tetteh Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ms Hanna Serwaa Tetteh

On the occasion of the United Nations 70th Anniversary, Ghana has urged the international community to renew their shared commitment to the UN, which remains the most viable forum for the pursuit of global peace.

Ms Hanna Tetteh, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, said since the establishment of the UN, 70 years ago, the world had made significant strides in human rights and on the development agenda, but the journey to deliver on the needs of man-kind was far from over.

She said despite the existence of the UN, the world was still faced with threats to peace, serious violations of human rights, environmental degradation and the devastating effects of climate change, social deprivation and poverty.

“The challenges that confront global and national efforts at development call for strong and robust institutions of which the UN must come first, Ms Tetteh stated on Thursday in a speech read on her behalf at a press briefing in Accra as part of activities marking the anniversary.

The anniversary on the theme: “Strong UN. Better World,” is an opportunity for member states to reflect - to look back on the UN’s history and take stock of its enduring achievements.

Ms Tetteh observed that the theme for the celebration was particularly significant to Ghana, as we worked towards building a strong and resilient economy to meet the people’s needs without compromising those of future generations.

“With a strong UN, the world was galvanized in the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) to bring improvement in the lives of humanity,” she said.

“It is, therefore, against this background that the adoption of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in September at the UN General Assembly should be welcoming news to all,” she added.

The Minister noted that the SDGs which were aimed at shaping the development agenda of the world in the next 15 years, covered issues of infrastructure and industrialization, inequality within and among countries, gender equality, energy, climate change, and above all, the elimination of poverty.

She said the 17 goals covering 169 targets if pursued with commitment would transform the world and make it a better place for all people.

She assured Ghanaians that the government remained committed to the ideas of the UN, and would ensure that the benefits of the SDGs were manifested in the lives of all.

Ms Tetteh noted that the government was determined to build a robust a transformative economy where industry and reliable energy supply with marching infrastructural development became an enduring foundation where youth unemployment would be forgotten.

On the achievements of the UN, Dr Christian Evans-Klock, UN Resident Coordinator, said the UN was a major factor in bringing about the downfall of the apartheid system in South Africa, and it continued to support peace, security and democracy across the Africa.

“And it is engaged now in helping countries in Africa deal with regional and inter-regional concerns in fighting tropical diseases and halting the spread of epidemics, supporting safe migration, stopping inter-regional drug and human trafficking, promoting fair trade and coping with global climate change."

She lauded Ghana for achieving a lot of success in its pursuit of the MDGs; and it is challenging itself now to learn from the success and redouble efforts where there are still gaps.

Activities lined up for the week-long anniversary celebration, include sensitization of the public on the UN and its activities including adult education in major local languages, such as Akan, Dagbani, Ewe and Ga, on the electronic media; talking point, quiz -What Do You Know, and Model UN General Assembly Session by school children.

The climax will be a flag-raising ceremony at the forecourt of the State House on Saturday, October 24.

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