Reform should not result in divesting the U.N.
GENEVA, Apr (G77/IPS) - U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan addressed the Group of 77 at the invitation of Ambassador Munir Akram of Pakistan, Chairman of the G-77 chapter in Geneva.
Annan spoke of his vision of reform of the United Nations and said he would remain committed to development in the South as a key U.N. priority and to the G-77s role in that undertaking.
Addressing the meeting, Ambassador Akram said that, in the view of the Group of 77, the reform should be driven by the aim of promoting efficiency and effectiveness rather than by benchmarks for the reduction of staffs and budgets.
Akram strongly defended the role of UNCTAD and underlined the need to further strengthen the institution. He praised the untiring efforts of Rubens Ricupero, Secretary-General of UNCTAD towards rationalization and reform of the UNCTAD Secretariat.
The issue of United Nations reforms is much on our minds. In our view these reforms should be driven by the aim of promoting efficiency and effectiveness rather than by benchmarks for the reduction of staffs and budgets. We trust that United Nations reforms will not result in divesting the United Nations, or its organs and agencies, of the responsibilities which have been entrusted to them under the Charter and by the agreed decisions of member States, he said.
It is our perception that the United Nations role in economic and social development has been progressively marginalized over the course of the last two decades, both at the structural and institutional level, he added.
Today, there are no international development strategies to guide our endeavours in this field. The decisions and commitments of major U.N. Conferences, from Rio to Beijing, remain to be implemented, he concluded.