STATEMENT ON BEHALF OF THE GROUP OF 77 AND CHINA BY MS. NADA TARBUSH, FIRST SECRETARY AT THE MISSION OF THE STATE OF PALESTINE TO THE UNITED NATIONS, ON AGENDA ITEM 142: JOINT INSPECTION UNIT, DURING THE FIRST RESUMED PART OF THE SEVENTY-THIRD SESSION OF THE FIFTH COMMITTEE OF THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY (New York, 11 March 2019)
1. I have the honour to deliver this statement on behalf of the Group of 77 and China on Agenda item 142: Joint Inspection Unit. The Group would like to express its appreciation to the outgoing Chairman of the Joint Inspection Unit, Mr. Jeremiah Kramer, and welcomes and thanks the current Chair and Inspector of the Joint Inspection Unit, Ms. Sukai Elie Prom-Jackson, for introducing the Report of the Unit for 2018 and program of work for 2019. We would like also to thank Ms. Federica Pietracci, Senior Programme Management Officer, Secretariat of the UN System Chief Executives Board for Coordination, for introducing the Secretary-General's related note.
2. We commend the JIU for its ongoing efforts as the sole independent, external oversight body of the United Nations system, mandated to conduct inspections, evaluations and investigations system-wide. Its work is now more needed than ever.
3. The Group has examined the reports submitted by the JIU and welcomes the finalisation of seven projects by the JIU during 2018. All of these are of great interest and value to the Group, especially the Progress report on the recommendations contained in the review of South-South and triangular cooperation in the United Nations system, and the report on Strengthening the policy research uptake in service of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. The Group looks forward to seeing the results of the other eight pending projects as well as those scheduled to begin in 2019.
4. The Group notes with encouragement that of the seven reports concluded in 2018, six were of a system-wide nature, which will help promote greater coordination among the organizations of the United Nations system. We will seek information on the frequency with which systematic reviews of participating organizations occurs. We consider it useful to provide a minimum standard duration to ensure an appropriate coverage of all participating organizations.
5. The Group reiterates its appreciation for the ongoing efforts to coordinate between the three oversight bodies of the system, namely the JIU, OIOS and BoA. It reiterates in this regard the importance of enhancing coordination especially with respect to programs of work and avoiding overlap among these bodies. However, it is important to keep in mind that despite apparent overlaps, the Unit should continue to work in the manner for which its mandate sets it apart from both OIOS and BoA.
6. The Group takes note of the filling of all posts in the Unit and its correlation to a better discharge of its mandate. We also acknowledge the call made by the JIU regarding the potential for having Junior Professional Officers from countries of the South, as an important way to enhance the diversity and exchange of knowledge in the Unit.
7. As is customary, the Group will be interested to examine the review of the acceptance and implementation of the JIU's recommendations by organizations. We believe that the legislative organs of all participating organizations should fully consider and discuss JIU reports and their Secretariat entities should fully implement the accepted recommendations. The Group continues to be concerned at the low rate of acceptance and implementation of recommendations by some organizations and will seek clarification in this regard, especially the lack of inputs from some of these organizations.
8. Related to this, the Group commends the progress achieved in implementing relevant GA resolutions towards maintaining a well-functioning web-based system for tracking up-to-date information on the status of implementation of recommendations of the Unit. The Group will be keen to learn about the results of the migration of the web-based tracking system and the Unit's website to platforms managed by the Secretariat in 2018, as well as about the plans to enhance the functionality of the web-based tracking system requested by the Unit that are being developed by the Office of Information and Communications Technology.
9. With respect to the 2019 program of work of the Unit, the Group appreciates the diversity of the projects that will be undertaken, including the completion of those pending. We also acknowledge the work that the Unit will carry out this year to develop a successor strategic framework for the period 2020-2029. We look forward, in the development of the said strategic framework, to the Unit taking into account the system-wide commitment to support the 2030 Agenda, and the increased need for accountability and transparency in a United Nations that is continuously changing.
10. In conclusion, Madam Chair, the Group of 77 and China would like to assure you of its readiness to engage constructively in the upcoming discussions with the aim of concluding this important agenda item in a timely fashion.
I thank you.