Zimbabwe chosen to lead UN economic, social council
WHILE a motley band of anti-Zimbabwe protestors seek relevance on the sidelines of the ongoing United Nations General Assembly here, the country is being recognised by the global organisation for its contributions to the advancement of humanity.
Starting at this 71st Session of the General Assembly, Zimbabwe - represented by its Ambassador to the UN, Mr Frederick Shava, is the new President of the UN Economic and Social Council (Ecosoc).
Ambassador Shava will steer the activities of the 54-nation group that is focused on socio-economic issues, taking over from Ambassador Oh Joon of South Korea.
Ahead of the 71st General Assembly meeting, Ambassador Shava emphasised the importance of infrastructure development in improving livelihoods.
“The Africa Agenda 2063 calls on African countries to transform, grow and industrialise their economies, and modernise agriculture and agro-business through valueaddition and productivity increase,” the UN News Centre quoted him as saying.
Ambassador Shava said he would organise “one or two special meetings” of Ecosoc to come up with viable infrastructure financing proposals.
He also spoke of the centrality of “the nexus between development, human rights, peace and security”, adding that during his tenure he would “explore options for enhancing the partnership between Ecosoc and relevant UN bodies such as the Peace-building Commission on the inter-linkages between development, peace and security”.
“There are many worrying trends in the world today. Almost on a daily basis, we are confronted with disturbing reports of instability and armed conflict, global humanitarian and human rights crises, terrorism and violent extremism, inequality and growing economic, social, and environmental tensions,” Ambassador Shava said.
“Consequently, surmounting these ills, through the (Sustainable Development Goals), in all societies, should be our rallying call. And this should be the central endeavour in all countries, in this Council, and in all multilateral institutions.
“In all the testimonies I hear in this Council, there is complete agreement that the world today has better capacity to meet these development aspirations than at any other time in human history.”
Meanwhile, the General Assembly last week adopted the work programme and agenda for its 71st session. The programme contains 173 items that will be covered in the general debate running from September 20 to 24.
President Mugabe is in New York for the debate, and he is accompanied by First Lady, Dr Grace Mugabe, Foreign Affairs Minister Simbarashe Mumbengegwi and Tourism and Hospitality Industry Minister Dr Walter Mzembi.
Among matters up for debate are the promotion of justice and international law, disarmament within the context of improvised explosive devices (IEDs) and nuclear weapons-related issues among others.
Ambassador Peter Thomson of Fiji has been elected to serve as President of the 71st Session of the General Assembly, taking over from Mr Mogens Lykketoft from Denmark.