30 May 2012

Zambia: Ryder Is New ILO Chief

Photo: Confederación Sindical de las Américas
Guy Ryder is the New International Labour Boss

GUY Ryder, a Briton, has been elected the International Labour Organisation (ILO) director general

Mr Ryder, 56, becomes the 10th ILO director general and was elected yesterday at the ILO headquarters in Geneva.

Information, Broadcasting and Labour Minister Fackson Shamenda who participated in the elections described the process as transparent and competitive.

This is according to a statement released by the Ministry of Information, Broadcasting and Labour public relations unit yesterday.

Mr Ryder received 30 of the 56 votes of the titular members of the ILO's governing body.

Mr Shamenda said the Government had no doubt that Mr Ryder would meet the aspirations and expectations of member states.

He was hopeful that Mr Ryder would build on the successes scored by his predecessor Juan Somavia who retires in September this year after 14 years at the helm of the ILO.

"Guy Ryder is somebody I worked with for three years when I was president of the International Confederation of Free Trade Unions and he was general secretary of the organisation.

"So, for me it's a re-union with an old colleague," Mr Shamenda said.

Zambia is a member of the ILO governing body which, among other responsibilities, elects the director general of the ILO every five years.

Nine candidates contested yesterday's election to succeed the outgoing ILO director general.

They were Charles Dan of Benin, Ibrahim Assane Mayaki of Niger and Senegal's Assane Diop.

Others were Mr Ryder, Angelina Garzon of Columbia, Gilles de Robien of France, Ad Melkert of the Netherlands, Malaysia's Jomo Kwame Sundaram and Mona Sahlin of Sweden.

Until his election yesterday, Mr Ryder was the ILO's executive director responsible for international labour standards and fundamental principles and rights at Work.

Mr Ryder said his election was an opportunity, in the middle of this global crisis, to make a difference to the lives of millions of people.

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