NEW YORK, US, Sep 22 – The United Nations has a rallying call – reforms. But it’s time for reforms within the global institution, according to Kenya’s Deputy President William Ruto.
Ruto said Kenya was deeply concerned that progress towards addressing the historical injustice in the representation of the African continent and its people on the UN Security Council remains slow and unpromising.
“The 71st session must achieve greater and genuine progress in this matter. I take this opportunity to request you, Mr President to prioritize the appointment of the next chair of the intergovernmental negotiations on UN Security Council reform and to preside over a year of real progress on this matter,” he said on Wednesday.
He urged continued strengthening of the United Nations footprint across the world, in general and particularly of the United Nations Office in Nairobi (UNON).
“This will grow the relevance and enhance the legitimacy of the United Nations in the global south.”
He acknowledged that 71 years after the founding of the United Nations, the world had made significant progress in human development.
“People across the world and Africa in particular, have achieved freedom and self-determination and expanded democracy. With advances in technology and collective action by the international community, the world has made remarkable strides in health care, education and eliminated a number of killer diseases,” DP Ruto said.
He also said there was urgent need to address the trade imbalance that Africa faces.
“Unless the trade imbalance is reversed as a matter of urgency, this will accentuate vulnerability, poverty, risk of insecurity and instability for both Africa and the rest of the world.”
He said Kenya welcomes the adoption of the New York Declaration for Refugees and the envisaged comprehensive refugee framework that will guide humanitarian response in a more humane, sensitive, and compassionate manner.
He explained Kenya had committed $10 million in new money to support the safe, dignified and orderly repatriation of the more than 400,000 Somali refugees in Kenya.
“Sadly, the efforts of the region and Somalia’s neighbours have not been matched by the international community. Instead of supporting this regional effort, the European Union this year cut the support for the AMISOM by 20 percent.”
He said despite repeated appeals, the United Nations Security Council had failed to provide adequate, predictable funding as well as force multipliers for AMISOM.
“I once again implore members of the Security Council to take this matter seriously and align the mandate of AMISOM to the threat levels in Somalia on land, air and sea.”