The Journal is appearing for the first time since the change over of the leadership of the Group of 77 for 1997. The United Republic of Tanzania has assumed leadership after its unanimous election that took place at the Ministerial Meeting last September in New York.
It is a moot point to ask whether there will be any editorial policy change. One thing is certain, there will be continuity in coverage of developments within the Group in New York and in the Chapters. Consistency on that score is vital for the cohesion of the Group and solidarity of the membership. However, taking cognizance of the pivotal year that is 1997 with forthcoming meetings of the Commission on Sustainable Devleopment in April, two months before the Special Session of the General Assembly scheduled for June 23-27, it is important that the Journal becomes the focal point of generating debate of the fundamental issues and questions central to the broad membership of the Group of 77. Consequently, starting in March, important articels by leading scholars of the South on development issues will be published. From then on, it our intention to maintain a vigrous debate that will focus on sharpening negotiating positions of the South.
In this issue, which is for January and February, a lot of space is given to the change of leadership, both in the Group and at the United Nations. A new Secretary General in the person of Mr. Kofi Annan of Ghana, was elected last December to lead the Organization into the next century. Already he has started the reform process he promised on assumption of office in January. The Group of 77 is following with keen interest his various reform proposals. So far the vital interest of the Group are being addressed and we are confident the line will be maintained.
Together we shall overcome.
Ambassador Daudi N. Mwakawago
of the United Republic of Tanzania
to the United Nations
Chairman of the Group of 77