STATEMENT ON BEHALF OF THE GROUP OF 77 AND CHINA BY MR. MUHAMMAD JAWAD AJMAL, FIRST SECRETARY, PERMANENT MISSION OF PAKISTAN TO THE UNITED NATIONS, ON AGENDA ITEM 136: REVIEW OF THE EFFICIENCY OF THE ADMINISTRATIVE AND FINANCIAL FUNCTIONING OF THE UNITED NATIONS, AS WELL AS ON AGENDA ITEM 144: JOINT INSPECTION UNIT, DURING THE FIRST PART OF THE RESUMED SEVENTY-SIXTH SESSION OF THE FIFTH COMMITTEE OF THE UN GENERAL ASSEMBLY (New York, 9 March 2022)
1. I have the honor to deliver this statement on behalf of the Group of 77 and China on the Agenda item 136: Review of the Efficiency of the Administrative and Financial Functioning of the United Nations, as well as on Agenda Item 144: Joint Inspection Unit for the first part of the resumed 76th session of the Fifth Committee.
2. Our Group would like to thank Mr. Christian Saunders, Assistant Secretary General for the Office of supply chain management, Mr. Abdullah Bachar Bong, Chair of the Advisory Committee on Administrative and Budgetary Questions (ACABQ), Ms. Fatoumata Ndiaye, Under-Secretary-General, Office of Internal Oversight Services, Inspector Gopinathan Achamkulangare, Joint Inspection Unit and Mr. Christophe Monier, Director, Business Transformation and Accountability Division for introducing the relevant reports on Supply chain activities, ACABQ, Office of Internal Oversight Services, Joint Inspection Unit and Accountability respectively.
3. Accountability is central to the viability and efficiency of any organization, including the United Nations. Our Group places special emphasis on this aspect, as it is the means by which we are able to determine whether decisions that we make at the General Assembly are respected and fully implemented. In this regard, the Group will engage constructively in the review of the accountability system, paying particular attention to how reforms should contribute to the enhancement of the accountability mechanism.
4. The Group acknowledges the efforts made to report on the status of the implementation of General Assembly resolutions on administrative and budgetary matters; as well as on the implementation of results-based management; and information on the actual use and impact of the information obtained on the performance of the Organization, amongst others.
5. While recognizing the efforts made towards establishing a more robust system of accountability and efficiency by strengthening the Secretariat's accountability system under its six components, the Group underscores the importance of taking more practical steps of institutional and personal accountability into future progress reports.
6. In the face of the current financial constraints, our Group believes that the Secretary-General must continue strengthening internal controls in the accountability system through the constant monitoring of effective expenditures in order to fully implement agreed mandates and programmes.
7. The Group sees merit in acquiring more data and analysis related to the specific aspects of supply chain management, particularly procurement in the United Nations Secretariat and having detailed information, with emphasis on procurement activities in the Secretariat including procurement innovations by the Secretary General, such as the e-tendering project, along with financial implications and benefits as well as efforts made to reach out to vendors who may not be able to access the system.
8. While acknowledging efforts made to promote business opportunities for vendors from developing countries, including least developed countries, and countries with economies in transition, our Group is of the view that the Secretary General should continue his efforts and explore additional, innovative ways to promote and sustain procurement from this group of countries.
9. Our Group notes with concern that the UN Procurement Manual has not been translated into all the six official languages. Reiterating the importance of equality for all official languages, we recommend translation of the Manual into the remaining official languages as soon as possible.
10. The Group will further inquire about the suspension of review of the management and administration of the Food and Agricultural Organization by the Joint Inspection Unit and subsequent deferment, on the request of the Director General of FAO and urges for a resumption of this review in the next program of work.
11. On behalf of the Group of 77 & China, we reiterate the strong support attached towards an effective and efficient accountability system that is embedded in the working habits of the United Nations. We remain ready to engage constructively will all partners to conclude these agenda items in a timely manner.
I thank you Mr. Chair.