UN must reform or become irrelevant
THE appointment of Zimbabwe’s Ambassador to the United Nations, Dr Fredrick Shava, as president of the UN Economic and Social Council is not “just one of those things”.
On the contrary, the choice of the envoy who boasts wide diplomatic experience, should be seen by both detractors and supporters of our country as a recognition of the positive role that, though comparatively small, Zimbabwe has in the past and continues to play in the advancement of humanity in the global village.
Not less significant though, Dr Shava’s appointment should also be read as an eloquent statement at best disapproving, and at worst denouncing those UN member states which have ganged up against Zimbabwe by organising and funding violent protests by supporters of opposition political parties in this country to try to render our homeland ungovernable in their efforts to exact regime change after the failure of illegal Western economic and financial sanctions to deliver on that goal by toppling the Zanu-PF government and reversing the land reform programme.
It certainly does not need one to prophesy in reverse for one to tell that a motley band of anti-Zimbabwe protestors trying to seek relevance at the current United Nations General Assembly in New York must also have had dirty money stashed away in their hands or pockets by arch enemies of our government in a fervent bid to embarrass President Mugabe who is among the heads of states attending the current session of the UN body, and also pariah the Zimbabwean state.
But be that as it may, the bigger picture of Zimbabwe’s contributions towards political, social and economic emancipation of the impoverished and the politically oppressed on the globe should not only take centre stage, but should persuade those with daggers pointed at Zimbabwe’s back to throw their weapons down and rally to Zimbabwe’s support socially and economically to enable our country to do much more than it has done so far in contributing to the dire needs of those fellow human beings elsewhere on our planet.
For instance, does it not amount to an irony of ironies for the only super power in the world, the United States of America, to pour laudations on this country through its Ambassador in Harare for Zimbabwe’s open handed reception and hosting of refugees fleeing violent conflicts, the boomerang effects of destabilisation of their countries by America and Europe?
Ambassador Thomas Harry was quoted in a news story published this week as saying “to date Zimbabwe has welcomed more than 9 000 refugees and we thank the government of Zimbabwe for honouring its international commitments by providing a safe place for refugees”.
Now compare Zimbabwe’s open-heartedness with the ethnocentricity of some Western countries that have shut out thousands upon thousands of refugees seeking a new lease of life away from their conflictridden homelands.
Dr Shava, who went to the UN after a sterling stint as Ambassador to China, the second biggest economy after the United States, will steer the activities of the 54 nations group that is focused on socio-economic issues.
As a part of his new portfolio, the envoy stressed the need for infrastructure development as a way of improving livelihoods in accordance with the Africa Agenda which urges African states to transform, grow and industrialise their economies.
Sanctions imposed on Zimbabwe by Britain, the former colonial power in this country, and the United States with other countries in Europe trotting along as cubs, clearly run counter to the Africa Agenda and should therefore be lifted so that Zimbabwe may also transform, grow and industrialise along with other countries on the continent.
Which also challenges the British government to make good the denunciation by its Ambassador to Zimbabwe of violent protests that have caused destruction to property.
Speaking after paying a courtesy call on Information, Media and Broadcasting services Minister Dr Christopher Mushohwe, Ms Catriona Laing said while police should exercise impartiality when executing their duties, protestors should know that any democratic country abhorred burning properties, looting of shops and attacks on innocent people.
But surely the British envoy does know the protesters she talked about resorted to violence as part of a Western agenda for regime change of which her own country is a part?
Or is she against violent protests as such, but in favour of protests devoid of looting and burning and harassment of innocent people so long as it remains a statement in favour of the overthrow of the incumbent, revolutionary party government, so that some people will be left with no volition but to read her statement as being divisional?
If the world body truly desires and seeks to better the welfare of humanity on this earth, then it must eradicate without further dragging its feet the dangerous and racially discriminatory philosophy of survival of the strongest by equalising social, economic and political opportunities for all member states to usher the global village into a brave new future for all.
As things stand now, a few powerful nations that enjoy greater vocal sway in the Security Council over other member states display to the world at large a mug shot as THE portraiture of the United Nations — a sad commentary, indeed, of that august body.
A United Nations where voting rights are equalised, more or less, and where unilateralism becomes anathema, displays to the rest of the world as an enlarged, more commendable picture of itself.
On the other hand, nursing the Security Council’s moribund status might lead to the UN’s irrelevance in the long run.
Dr Fredrick Shava