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General News of Friday, 31 October 2014

Source: Permanent Mission of Ghana to the United Nations,

Ghana gets overwhelming endorsement as ECOSOC member

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Ghana today (October 29, 2014) received an overwhelming endorsement from the United Nations General Assembly to the membership of the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC). The Council serves as the central mechanism for the activities of the United Nations system and its specialized agencies, and supervises the subsidiary and expert bodies in the economic, social and environmental fields.

Ghana bagged 185 out of the 187 valid votes cast to secure a seat on the Council, which is one of the six main organs of the world body, established by the UN Charter in 1946. It is the principal body for coordination, policy review, policy dialogue and recommendations on economic, social and environmental issues, as well as the implementation of the internationally agreed development goals.

Other African countries elected to serve on the 54-member Council are Burkina Faso and Uganda which had 181 votes each, Zimbabwe 178 votes and Mauritania, which managed 177 votes.

The ECOSOC members are elected by the General Assembly for overlapping three-year terms. Seats on the Council are allotted based on geographical representation to African States, Asian States, Eastern European States, Latin American and Caribbean States, and Western European and other States.

ECOSOC has undergone reforms in the last decade to strengthen the Council and its working methods, giving special attention to the integrated and coordinated implementation of, and follow-up to, the outcomes of all major United Nations conferences summits in the economic, social, environmental and related fields.

The Council engages a wide variety of stakeholders – policymakers, parliamentarians, academics, major groups, foundations, business sector representatives and more than 3,200 registered non-governmental organizations – in a productive dialogue on sustainable development through a programmatic cycle of meetings.

The work of the Council is guided by an issue-based approach, and there is an annual theme that accompanies each programmatic cycle, ensuring a sustained and focused discussion among multiple stakeholders.

Ghana's election to the ECOSOC comes exactly nine days after it got another massive endorsement from the General Assembly to the Human Rights Council of the UN, which is responsible for the promotion and protecting of human rights worldwide.

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