PRESIDENT Michael Sata has charged that humanity has again been embarrassed by the continued indiscriminate killings of innocent civilians in countries such as Syria and other trouble-torn spots in Africa.
Mr Sata has since urged the United Nations (UN) and the international community to intensify their efforts to halt the killings.
The President said this in New York yesterday when he delivered his maiden speech to the 67th UN General Assembly whose theme was 'Adjustment or Settlement of International Disputes or Situations by Peaceful Means.'
He said the theme was significant in the wake of the turmoil that continued to threaten international peace and security, with the persistent conflict situations on the African continent in places such as Sudan, South Sudan, Guinea Bissau, Mali, and Somalia.
He urged the international community to strengthen efforts in bringing peace to the troubled regions.
"Further afield, but no less important is the situation in Syria, which has seen the indiscriminate killings of many innocent lives.
"There is therefore, need for concerted efforts to utilise peaceful means such as mediation and negotiations to bring a halt to the killings and restore peace to Syria. Humanity has again been embarrassed by this unnecessary carnage," Mr Sata said.
He said it was imperative the on-going efforts at reforming the UN be approached with renewed vigour as Zambia was concerned that a seemingly difficult deadlock had been created in the reform process of the UN.
He said as enshrined in the Ezulwini Consensus and Sirte Declaration, Africa should immediately be given two permanent seats with a veto and two non-permanent seats to help correct the historical injustice that the continent has suffered and also adhere to the geo-political realities of modern times.
Meanwhile, the President has also pledged to ensure that Zambia's recent positive macro-economic gains started trickling down to the average citizen.
Mr Sata said he would use his massive experience both as then opposition leader and now in Government to ensure that macro-economic gains the country has recorded started benefiting the majority citizenry unlike in the previous regime.
"Shortly before I was ushered into office, there was much publicity of the positive macro-economic indicators, but these results did not trickle down to the average citizenry," he said.
In the quest to take development to the micro level, he said the Patriotic Front Government's focus was to enhance agricultural productivity and access to markets for peasants and small scale farmers, provide improved health services as close to the families as possible, improve quality of education, and facilitate access to decent housing and accommodation.
President Sata, who outlined some of the major achievements of his Government since coming into power last year, said the country had seen reasonable improvements in the economy with the inflation rate down to 6.6 per cent and a Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth rate in the region of six per cent in spite of the low global economic trends.
He said Government attached similar importance to promoting good governance, by putting in place robust anti-corruption programmes, with improved and increased resources which should set a new stage in development.
"In addition, Zambia has for the first time entrusted the running of governance and legal-judicial institutions to our women folk. The Inspector-General of police is female, Chief Justice and Deputy are female, Director-General of the Anti-Corruption Commission is female, and so is the Commissioner for the Drug Enforcement Commission. I remain convinced that they will improve our record and surpass the nation's expectations," Mr Sata said amid applause from the audience.
He said Government was focused on creating employment for the youth by looking to improving partnerships with the various UN agencies and the rest of the international community to harness the best practices from across the world.
He said the youth of 2012 had made Zambia the African football champions.
On the rule of law, Mr Sata said Government was undertaking a constitutional review process which was intended to ensure the prestige of the individual citizen and liberties.
The Government intended to speed up the process of domesticating the international conventions that sought to bridge the gaps for the minority.
On sustainable environmental management, he said adequate funds should be committed for implementation of environmental programmes.
He said Zambia had made steady progress in achieving some of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).
"These are most visible in the education sector which has seen an increase in the net enrolment of children in primary schools while the health sector has seen reductions in the prevalence of HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria. Discarding the MDGs entirely would be to the detriment of the poorer nations," he said.
The President commended former US President George W. Bush who travelled to Lusaka to launch the Pink Ribbon-Red Ribbon campaign against breast and cervical cancer.