Mr. Chairman,

I have the honour to introduce on behalf of the Member States of the Group of 77 and China draft resolution A/C.5/60/L.37/Rev.1 entitled, "Investing in the United Nations: for a stronger Organization worldwide." The Group of 77 and China requests that action be taken by consensus today.

For more than two weeks, the Group of 77 and China has worked tirelessly with other Member States to produce a balanced draft that takes into account the concerns of different States. There is general agreement among Member States on the way forward on almost all of the proposals put forward by the Secretary-General. The first draft of our resolution A/C.5/60/L.37 included all of the consensus agreements that Member States were able to reach by the deadline of 18 April 2006 that was set for the negotiations. This draft now includes further contributions from Member States that were agreed to by consensus by 20 and 21 April 2006.

Mr. Chairman,

There should be no doubt that the Group of 77 and China strongly supports ongoing efforts to reform the United Nations. We are committed to a United Nations that is more efficient, effective and accountable to Member States as enshrined in the Charter of the United Nations. We believe that reform is a collective agenda and should serve the interest of all Member States and any attempt to exclude Members of the United Nations from contributing decisions to the strengthening and operation of this Organization contradicts the spirit and the letter of the Charter.

Draft resolution A/C.5/60/L.37/Rev.1 anticipates the three reports that the Secretary-General has indicated he would provide to the General Assembly in May, June and September 2006. We are pleased that there is consensus among all Member States that the three reports to be presented by the Secretary-General will be critical in assisting Member States to decide on the important issues contained in the report on "Investing in the United Nations: For a Stronger Organization worldwide." Every single Member State has supported the issuance of these reports and the timelines for their issuance because there is overwhelming consensus that we would need more information to make the critical decisions that are stake.

It is particularly important to remind ourselves that the three reports will elaborate on the proposals of the Secretary-General to recruit and retain highly-quality staff reflecting the international character of the Organisation, improve the conditions of service of staff, strengthen leadership in the Secretariat, increase training, improve the information and communication technology systems, enhance the procurement procedures, and improve the performance evaluation and reporting of the Secretariat.

Mr. Chairman,

The Group of 77 and China is on record as strongly supporting the strengthening of oversight and accountability in the Organisation. Already, the Group of 77 and China was supportive of the creation of an ethics office, the formulation of a whistle-blower policy and increasing the auditing and investigation capacity of the Office of Internal Oversight Services.

It was important for the Group of 77 and China that this draft resolution should include a section on accountability. We were pleased that other Member States were able to join consensus in stressing the importance of accountability for the effective and efficient implementation of legislative mandates and the use of resources. We look forward to the Secretary-General further defining accountability, including its mechanisms, as well as proposing parameters and instruments for the rigorous enforcement of accountability without exception and at all levels of the Secretariat.

Mr. Chairman,

It became clear during the negotiations that there are some areas where there is a wide divergence of views. These areas touch on the role and prerogatives of Member States in the General Assembly that are clearly enshrined in the Charter. And these are issues that have no relation to the management reform of the Secretariat. We in the Group of 77 and China have come to notice that there is a deliberate attempt to expand and try to give a wider interpretation to Paragraphs 162 and 163 of the Outcome Document by trying to introduce extraneous issues that were rejected during the negotiations for the Summit of last September.

The issue is not about conditions and measures necessary for the Secretary-General to carry his managerial responsibilities effectively. We all support the Secretary-General in his Charter defined role as chief administrative officer of the United Nations. However, we do not understand or accept that in order for the Secretary General to carry out his duties, this should be accompanied by the denial of the right of all Member States to pronounce on the administration of the United Nations, including on its budgetary decisions. To suggest that a "small but representative group of Members States" can replace the role of all Member States in carrying out the oversight responsibilities of the General Assembly is to deny every Member of the United Nations the role due to them and to attempt to amend the equality of Member States that is enshrined in the Charter.

The Group of 77 and China stresses in the draft resolution before you that proposals 20 and 21 do not bear any relation to the requests of the Assembly as outlined in resolution 60/1 or in any other legislative mandate adopted by the Assembly.

The Group of 77 and China strongly believes that the right of every Member State to have an equal say in the decision-making of the Organization must be upheld. This right is not dependent on the financial contributions of Member States to the budget of the Organization. To suggest that the Assembly can either stay quiet, or even postpone, pronouncing itself on the governance proposals is to avoid the responsibility that is enshrined in the Charter. Furthermore, in avoiding living up to the responsibility to decide on this fundamental matter can only guarantee that a cloud of doubt about the future of this Organization will always remain.

Sections VI, VII and VIII of the draft resolution provide for the broadest possible consensus between the diverse views expressed by Member States on governance and the decision-making processes of the General Assembly. The majority of paragraphs in these sections are based on agreed language and agreements that were reached by consensus, some as recently as 23 December 2005, and also in the course of the negotiations in March and April 2006.

Mr. Chairman,

The draft resolution contains all of the agreements that Member States were able to reach during the negotiations, including the agreement on the elements to be contained in the three reports to be submitted in May, June and September 2006. On the more contentious areas, it provides a middle ground for the broadest possible consensus. The resolution will enable Member States to act decisively on the additional resources that the Secretary-General may need in order to implement the proposals.

The Group of 77 and China has made a concerted effort to include the concerns of other groups and Member States. Our draft includes contributions from various Member States and in placing this draft resolution for action today, we believe that all Member States will be able to join the consensus on this balanced text.

I thank you.