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Diasporian News of Thursday, 21 October 2010

Source: NPP-USA

NPP-USA applauds Foreign Minister


The United States Branch of NPP applauds Ghana’s Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, Alhaji Muhammad Mumuni for his call on the United Nations to initiate urgent reforms to consider including an African country on the permanent membership of the United Nations Security Council.

In an interview with the Ghana News Agency, Alhaji Mumuni said "Africa's exclusion from the list of permanent members of the Security Council is an anomaly," and he could not be more right. Africa’s population, its strategic location on the globe, and the prevailing role it plays in global security makes it imperative that it be represented on the UN Security Council on a permanent basis.

In addition to its location and population, Africa has availed two of its sons to lead the entire organization. Egypt’s Boutros Boutro Ghali served one term from January 1992 to December 1996 while Ghana’s Kofi Annan served a little over two terms from January 1997 to December 2006. These two exemplary Africans served the highest office in the world with dignity, grace, and distinction, proving beyond doubt that Africans have what it takes to serve on the Security Council effectively.

Although the General Assembly has elected Colombia, Germany, India, Portugal and South Africa to serve as non-permanent members of the Security Council for two-year terms starting on 1 January 2011, Africa’s absence from the permanent membership starves it of the cultural component to conflict resolution given Africa’s prominence in conflicts.

The Security Council has primary responsibility, under United Nations Charter, for the maintenance of international peace and security. When a dispute leads to fighting, the Council's first concern is to bring it to an end as soon as possible. On many occasions, the Council has issued cease-fire directives which have been instrumental in preventing wider hostilities.

The council, however, has only five permanent members. United States has been inflicted by internal civil strife before; United Kingdom’s squabbles with the Irish Republic is common knowledge; China’s Tianamen Square uprising and put-down is its most recent; Russia continues to fight with her neighbors who were part of the former Soviet Union; and France is beset with disturbances with her mostly Arab citizens. All of these hardly make the permanent members experts on conflict resolution.

In contrast, there are countries in Africa such as Ghana, Tanzania and Botswana that have been able to stave off civil conflict despite being located in traditional trouble spots. Certainly the world can benefit from their conflict resolution experiences. Therefore, as Alhaji Mumuni aspires to open the debate on this important issue, he can rely upon the unflinching support of NPP-USA.