Commemorating SDG@3 in Yaounde, Cameroon

 The third anniversary of the adoption of the Sustainable Development Goals was commemorated in Cameroon through a series of activities (Caravan, Open Day and official ceremony) from 21 to 25 September by the United Nations System in collaboration with the Yaoundé 6 Subdivision and youth volunteers of the Civil Society.

These events were aimed at

1. engaging the local population by increasing their knowledge on the SDGs,

2. inform youths of the Yaoundé 6th subdivision and promote their voluntary participation and commitment to the SDGs,

3. create new partnerships with civil society actors working to achieve the SDGs and mobilize these actors within the “Youth Kamer Volunteers 4 SDG” platform.

Commemorative events kicked off with a caravan on Friday 21 September, with the participation of more than 150 youths,

Open Doors Day on the SDGs – Saturday 22 September 2018

The stands were arranged according to themes such as;

Stand 1: Exhibition of communication tools on the SDGs

Stand 2: video projections (Success stories, videos about the SDGs)

Stand 3: Games competitions

Stand 4: MY World 2030

Mounted within the premises of the Yaoundé 6 Subdivision at Etoug-Ebé and animated by UN staff and volunteers from Civil Society Organizations, these stands exhibited SDG items such as posters, photos, video projection, roll-up, banner books, brochures, flyers. Continue reading

Cameroun : SG de l’ONU appelle les électeurs à se rendre aux urnes pour le scrutin présidentiel

Cameroun : le chef de l’ONU appelle les électeurs à se rendre aux urnes pour le scrutin présidentiel

Photo ONU/Mark Garten
Le Secrétaire général de l’ONU António Guterres.
4 octobre 2018

Alors que le Cameroun se prépare à tenir des élections présidentielles le 7 octobre, le Secrétaire général de l’ONU, António Guterres, a encouragé jeudi tous les Camerounais à exercer leur droit démocratique et a appelé à un processus pacifique, crédible et inclusif.

« Le Secrétaire général appelle toutes les parties prenantes à faire preuve de retenue avant, pendant et après les élections », a dit son porte-parole adjoint, Farhan Haq, dans une déclaration à la presse.

« Il appelle également tous les candidats à résoudre tout grief lié au processus électoral par les voies légales et constitutionnelles établies », a-t-il ajouté.

« Le Secrétaire général condamne toute menace de violence ou tout acte d’intimidation par quelque groupe que ce soit et réitère que tous les griefs doivent être résolus dans le cadre d’un dialogue inclusif. Les Nations Unies sont prêtes à apporter un soutien à cet égard », a encore dit le porte-parole adjoint

S.E Lejeune Mbella Mbella devant l’Assemblée générale de l’ONU

Photo ONU/Cia Pak
Le Ministre des affaires étrangères du Cameroun Lejeune Mbella Mbella devant l’Assemblée générale des Nations Unies. 28 septembre 2018

Le Ministre des relations extérieures du Cameroun, Lejeune Mbella Mbella, a assuré jeudi que « la consolidation de la culture démocratique au Cameroun est un processus inéluctable, malgré les défis sécuritaires » auxquels le pays fait face.

Dans son discours devant l’Assemblée générale des Nations Unies à New York, M. Mbella a affirmé que son pays avait procédé au perfectionnement de son système électoral, d’une part par le renforcement des mécanismes d’organisation des élections, d’autre part par des mesures visant à assurer une participation élevée aux prochains scrutins, dont le plus proche est l’élection présidentielle prévue pour le 7 octobre de cette année.

Le ministre a également affirmé que grâce à des efforts coordonnés avec les pays voisins du Bassin du lac Tchad, « la capacité de nuisance de la secte terroriste Boko Haram a été considérablement réduite, même s’il faut rester mobilisé jusqu’à son éradication totale ».

Le ministre a par ailleurs assuré que le gouvernement camerounais restait déterminé à « stabiliser la situation socio-politique dans les régions du nord-ouest et du sud-ouest du pays. Il a caractérisé les troubles récemment observés dans ces régions comme provenant de revendications corporatistes de syndicats d’enseignants et d’avocats.

« Malheureusement, a-t-il ajouté, des individus sans foi ni loi ont cru devoir transformer ces préoccupations socioprofessionnelles en revendications sécessionnistes, visant la désintégration de l’Etat ». Il a assuré que le gouvernement s’employait à restaurer paix et sécurité dans ces régions « dans le respect des droits de l’homme et des lois » et était déterminé à « garantir aussi bien la sécurité des personnes et des biens que l’unité et l’intégrité du territoire national ».

M. Mbella a par ailleurs exalté le multilatéralisme comme étant « la voie la plus appropriée pour répondre aux défis auxquels l’humanité fait face aujourd’hui ». Il a estimé que le rôle et l’avenir de l’ONU restaient « tributaires de la volonté des Etats membres de raffermir sa légitimité, sa démocratisation et sa représentativité ».

Cela passe par les réformes de ses organes, au rang desquels le Conseil de sécurité, a-t-il dit, ajoutant que l’on ne pouvait envisager « la pérennisation de la marginalisation de l’Afrique, qui demeure le seul continent à ne pas disposer d’un siège permanent au sein du principal organe chargé de la paix et de la sécurité internationales ».

Commemorating the International Day of Peace in Cameroon

The 2018 International day of peace was commemorated in Cameroon on 21 September, through an educational outreach event organized by UNIC Yaoundé, on the theme; “The Right to peace- The Universal Declaration of Human Rights at 70”with students of the Protestant University of Central Africa (PUCA) on SDG 16: promoting just, peaceful and inclusive societies.

 Reverend Professor Mbima Bouba, Rector of the Protestant University of Central Africa welcome the UN Resident Coordinator and participants to the commemoration.

Prof. Celestin Tagou; Dean of the Faculty of Social Science and International Relations briefly presented his faculty and the work being done to make peace studies deeply rooted in the Cameroonian curricula.

Mrs. Allegra Baiocchi; UN Resident Coordinator harped on the role of youths to engage in peace and be promoters of peace everywhere they find themselves. Quoting UNSG Antonio Guterres, she stated that “there is no peace without security, and no development without peace”.

She further drew the attention of participants to these questions;

Ø  What will you do next time you receive a message of war on your phone, Facebook or WhatsApp?

Ø  What will you do if you find yourself in a debate or a peaceful discussion about who is right or wrong?

“You can speak out, you can use an opportunity to bring peace. We should be peace seekers and peace makers, never to abandon this journey” Mrs. Baiocchi added.

UNIC’s NIO; Jean Njita presented the 2018 theme of the International day of peace, enlightening participants on the relevance of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights today as it was when it was adopted in 1948. UNSG video message was also projected.

Workshop with students on SDG 16: Promote Just, Peaceful and Inclusive Societies

The official ceremony was immediately followed by presentations on the components of SDG16: Peace, Justice and Effective Institutions;

Ø  Dr. William Arrey; Peace and Development (PUCA) on Peaceful Resolution of Crisis

Ø  Mrs. Dorothée Onguene; (UNCHRD) on “Right to Peace and Access to Justice for All

Ø  Mr. Zephirin Emini; (UNDP) on Building Effective Institutions

Respective presenters harped on the fact that a new paradigm to peace is needed, as it cannot always stand for the absence of war. If structural and cultural factors that cause violence are not controlled, then peace remains threatened. They advised that in seeking for peaceful resolutions, be in the families, communities or societies, dialogue and peaceful reconciliation remain the best options.

Mrs. Aya Bach facilitated the brainstorming session whereby students were divided into three working groups. After the deep reflections and exchanges in the sessions, students exposed their peace plans and took commitments for the peaceful resolution of Crisis and conflicts in their community.

Dr. William Arrey insisted that violence can never settle any dispute, thus the necessity to speak out and work for peace.

UNIC Yaoundé provided information kits comprised of; UNSG’s message on International Peace Day, UNGA resolutions 36/67 and 55/282 on International Year of Peace and International Day of Peace and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights to the over 115 persons in attendance.

Président Faustin-Archange Touadéra, devant la 73e Assemblée générale des Nations Unies


“Face aux nombreuses épreuves qui jonchent notre histoire, nous saurons être patients mais déterminés dans l’action, vigilants et conscients de l’ampleur de la tâche qui reste à faire », a-t-il ajouté dans un discours devant les autres Etats membres.

M. Touadéra a promis de ne ménager aucun effort pour créer les conditions de la réconciliation et de la reconstruction de son pays, où est déployée une Mission de la paix des Nations Unies (MINUSCA) depuis plusieurs années.

Il a expliqué que son gouvernement s’efforçait de restaurer l’autorité de l’Etat en poursuivant le déploiement progressif de l’administration et des services de l’Etat dans les provinces ainsi que le rétablissement des services sociaux de base.

Il a déploré la persistance d’événements tragiques et douloureux « perpétrés par les ennemis de la paix », qui « alimentent les violences qui ensanglantent, depuis le début de l’année 2018, aussi bien dans la capitale qu’à l’intérieur du pays, avec une augmentation des cas de violation des droits de l’homme et du droit international humanitaire ».

Le Président centrafricain a ajouté que, malgré ces défis, son gouvernement avait maintenu l’élan des réformes dans les secteurs de la sécurité et de la défense. Il s’est réjoui de l’engagement pris par l’Union européenne et des partenaires bilatéraux pour soutenir la formation et la montée en puissances des forces de défense et de sécurité.

« Notre ambition, c’est de les voir véritablement opérationnelles et contribuer, aux côtés de la MINUSCA, à l’immense effort de stabilisation et de retour à une paix durable en République centrafricaine », a-t-il dit. Pour gagner ce pari, il a toutefois jugé nécessaire la levée totale de l’embargo sur les armes qui pèse encore sur l’armée nationale.

M. Touadéra a enfin exprimé toute la gratitude du peuple centrafricain à l’ensemble de la communauté internationale, « pour tous les sacrifices consentis afin de ramener la paix dans mon pays ». Il a souhaité que la communauté internationale reste mobilisée aux côtés du peuple centrafricain pour travailler au relèvement du pays.

Deputy Secretary-General Remarks at High-level event on the Third Industrial Development Decade for Africa

New York, 26 September 2018

Amina New DSG Portrait

Excellencies,

Ladies and Gentlemen,

I am pleased to join you today as we focus attention on Africa’s industrial and socio-economic development.

I am encouraged by the presence of so many high-level representatives from both the public and private sectors. This year’s event comes when Africa’s economic growth is beginning to recover after the decline witnessed in 2016. Real output growth is estimated to have increased by 3.6 percent in 2017, up from 2.2 percent in 2016, and is poised to accelerate to 4.1 percent in 2018 and 2019.

This is indeed welcome news and a reflection of the continent’s strong potential. However, despite this positive economic growth, challenges remain for the achievement of meaningful inclusive and sustainable industrial development for Africa.

The diversification of African economies through value addition is essential for sustainable growth, market resilience and withstanding economic shocks. To that end, we welcome the launch this year of the African Continental Free Trade Area. This will constitute the world’s largest free trade area in terms of membership and will also create a single market of 1.2 billion people with a combined GDP of over 2.5 trillion dollars, which is expected to double by 2050.

Sustainable industrialization is key to the success of the Free Trade Area, with an emphasis on inclusive development that harnesses the energy, drive, creativity and skills of women and youth. Within the framework of the Third Industrial Development Decade for Africa, commendable efforts are being undertaken by different stakeholders, including within the United Nations.

We have a roadmap for its implementation that will form the basis for joint programmes between UN agencies and key stakeholders.  This and other achievements are captured in the progress report on the Decade that will be presented to the General Assembly.

Going forward, I would like to highlight five areas for special attention.

First, congruency between alignment and cohesive regional and industrial policies. Trade and industry policies that talk to each other are much more likely to yield positive results than those implemented in isolation.

Second, enhanced focus to investments on infrastructure development. This includes special economic zones and industrial parks; roads; ports; harbours; energy infrastructure; information and communication technologies and digital infrastructure.

Third, enhanced value addition local contacts, with a focus on agriculture and other natural resources. As the mainstay of most African countries, these hold the key for accelerated sustainable growth, diversification and job creation.

Fourth, is trade capacity building to facilitate fuller participation in regional and global value chains. Being at the table needs muscle capacity to engage and negotiate the best deals for your country.

And fifth is human capital development and technology with a focus on women and youth to ensure inclusive development.

It is also clear that the agendas set out in the Industrial Development Decade and the African Continental Free Trade Area cannot be achieved by any single entity or country.  There is need to build and strengthen partnerships among all relevant stakeholders.

Finally creating a space for these partnerships to focus on five areas mentioned and addition, encouraging technology transfer, building productive capacity, creating jobs, promoting international trade, supporting economic diversification, and building green industries.

Creative and innovative approaches must continue to be deployed to mobilize both financial and non-financial resources. Maximizing financing for development means a number of things. We must mobilize domestic resources alongside international financial resources.

We need to harness the role of the private sector in financing development. And we must maximize the use of innovative financing sources and mechanisms including pension funds, insurance and other large pools of private capital.

To do this, it is vital that we share experiences and lessons among countries. We also need to leverage and deepen strategic North-South; South-South and Triangular cooperation.

Excellencies,

Ladies and gentlemen,

On behalf of the United Nations, I reaffirm our continued strong commitment and action to sustainabledevelopment on the continent and ensuring an inclusive, resilient, and secure future, for all Africans.

I wish you a productive meeting.

73rd Sessions of UN General Assembly

100+ world leaders will attend high-level #UNGA events all week starting on Monday.

The theme for the general debate this year is “Making the United Nations relevant to all people: global leadership and shared responsibilities for peaceful, equitable and sustainable societies”; it is also the theme of the 73rd session of the General Assembly.

Now there are more ways than ever to follow the action ➡️ https://bit.ly/2QNjasK

When is your Head of State speaking?

UN Secretary-General’s High-level Meeting on Financing the 2030 Agenda

No single actor can fund a sustainable future. We need everyone.

On 24 September, global leaders will convene at #UNGA for the Secretary-General’s High-level Meeting on Financing the 2030 Agenda to discuss financial policies that put sustainable development at the centre of a strong global economy.

Learn more 👉 http://bit.ly/financing2030 #Fin4Dev #GlobalGoals

H.E. Ms. María Fernanda Espinosa Garcés Starts Work Today as President of the 73rd Session of the United Nations General Assembly

Yaounde, Cameroon, 18 September 2018 – H.E. Ms. Maria Fernanda Espinosa Garcés will be sworn in today to commence her official tasks as President of the 73rd Session of the United Nations General Assembly.

The General Assembly elected María Fernanda Espinosa Garcés on June 5, 2018 as President of its seventy-third session — making her the fourth woman to helm the 193-member organ in its more than seven-decades-long history.

H.E. Ms. Maria Fernanda Espinosa Garcés

Ms. Espinosa, a former Ecuadorian Minister for National Defence and current Minister of Foreign Affairs, received 128 votes, surpassing the required simple majority of 96. The only other candidate, Mary Elizabeth Flores Flake (Honduras), received 62 votes during the elections.

Speaking at the UN Headquarters, in New York, after her election in June, she promised to lead the Assembly in a way that strengthens multilateralism and better delivers on its commitments. On her priorities for the 73rd Session, she said “I think that we are really living in a very troubled environment, and I think it is very important that we really work towards the strengthening of the multilateral system and the revitalization of the United Nations; that we work hard to deliver better”.

She also added “to use an acronym that I have come up with, the “D.A.R.E” acronym, meaning “Delivery, Accountability, Relevance and Efficiency. “The D.A.R.E acronym is going to guide my work as President of the General Assembly during the 73rd Session. So, revitalize and boost multilateralism, revitalize the General Assembly, revitalize the UN system. I think that we all need, and we will all benefit from, a strong rules-based international system”. She added.

H.E. Ms. Espinosa has chosen the theme “Making the United Nations Relevant to All People: Global Leadership and Shared Responsibilities for Peaceful, Equitable and Sustainable Societies”.

The 73rd Session of the UN General Assembly opened in New York today.