10 November 2013

Africa's Demand for UN Security Council Reform

President Goodluck Jonathan of Nigeria and his Gambian counterpart, Yahya Jammeh, on Saturday in Banjul, Gambia, re-stated Africa's demand for the urgent reformation of the United Nations, according to a Nigerian presidency press statement, received here by PANA.

The statement, signed by Reuben Abati, the presidential special adviser on media and publicity, said "The two Presidents reiterated the need for the reformation of the Security Council and the United Nations System in its entirety so as to reflect current realities.'

"They expressed their conviction that the African continent should be equitably represented in world governance through a better presence on the Security Council and in agencies of the United Nations," the two leaders said in a joint communiqué issued after their talks in Banjul, the Gambian capital.

President Jonathan had earlier thanked President Jammeh and the Gambia for conceding West-Africa's non-permanent seat in the United Nations' Security Council for 2014-2015 to Nigeria.

He assured the Gambian leader that Nigeria would diligently and effectively represent and promote the interests of West Africa and Africa during its tenure on the Security Council.

The two presidents also agreed on the need for African leaders to take more concerted action to accelerate the pace of regional and continental economic integration.

In this regard, they called for faster action towards the removal of obstacles and impediments to greater intra-regional and intra-continental trade and economic activities in Africa.

They also called for the urgent re-invigoration, rationalisation and harmonisation of Regional Economic Communities in Africa as a necessary step towards full continental economic integration.

At the bilateral level, President Jonathan and President Jammeh resolved to strengthen and re-energize the Nigeria-Gambia Joint Commission with a view to diversifying and strengthening cooperation between the two countries in all the sectors.

They also analysed other prevailing regional, continental and international problems such as the state of affairs in Guinea-Bissau, Syria and the Middle-East.

The two leaders reiterated the call for a speedy return to constitutional order in Guinea-Bissau in accordance with the pertinent decisions adopted by ECOWAS, the African Union and the United Nations.

They deplored the continued violence in Syria and urged all the protagonists and international actors involved to work towards a just and sustainable political solution which will ensure the realisation of the legitimate aspirations of the people of Syria, and respect for the sovereignty, territorial integrity and social cohesion of the country.

During the visit, President Jonathan commissioned the new Chancery building of the Nigerian High Commission in Banjul and also met with members of the Nigerian community in The Gambia.

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