26 September 2017

Cameroon: 72nd UN Ordinary General Assembly - Memorable Participation for President Paul Biya

The Head of State through different general debates and presentation joined his peers to examine and propose solutions to life-menacing problems plaguing the world now

President Paul Biya has attended yet another session of the United Nations General Assembly debate. Far from simply respecting an debate annual rendezvous, the just-ended 72nd UN Ordinary General Assembly session that ran for over a week, at least the general debate with Heads of State, Government and delegations from September 19 to 25, 2017, held under a peculiar context and theme, "Focusing on People: Striving for Peace and a Decent Life for all on a Sustainable Planet." Amidst an unhealthy global economic environment, nuclear threats, international terrorism, unresolved conflicts and violation of international humanitarian law, rising inequality, cyber criminality, refugee crisis, sustainable development and climate change; President Paul Biya and Cameroon's stance were awaited. It was an opportunity to enlighten the world on what Cameroon is doing to stay afloat in the turbulent global ship. From the time the Presidential couple jetted into the city on September 17, 2017 till when they checked out, it was business from session to session. Cameroon-proposed Solutions to Global Problems Highly awaited on the podium of the UN on September 22, 2017, President Biya in about 15 minutes made a round of burning problems that hamper proper living across the globe today. While condemning continuing conflicts in Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Middle East, which he said, are causing hardship, Mr. Biya stated that his country remains resolute to peace. "For Cameroon and most of our States, peace is the sine qua non for the survival of humanity and for sustainable development. Such peace remains dangerously under threat, notably from terrorism, conflict, poverty and climate disruptions," he said. The New York trip and address of the UN General Assembly permitted the Head of State to once again remind the world of what Cameroon and others are going through and the weight on the governments. For instance, the fight against the jihadist sect Boko Haram, he noted, requires more widespread mobilisation. Cameroon like others directly hit by the bestial sect looks forward to the arrival in the Lake Chad region of a high-level mission mandated by the Security Council to the Secretary General under resolution 2349. The meeting between President Paul Biya and UN Secretary General, Antonio Guterres on the sidelines of the just-ended session, gave Cameroon the opening to discuss issues that are of great importance to the socio-economic life of the nation. While pledging to continually uphold the cumbersome hosting of refugees, the Head of State and Antonio Guterres also took time off to discuss ways of mobilising the international community to support Cameroon in the challenging humanitarian endeavour. The crucial issue of the respect of the Greentree Accord between Cameroon and Nigeria over the Bakassi Peninsula was equally highlighted during the New York rendezvous. After briefing the UN Secretary General on its implementation, President Paul wished that the UN-constituted commission to that effect rounds off its work and for the mutual respect of engagements. Preoccupations which Mr. Guterres took note of with each party committing to work harder to reinforce the existing fruitful partnership between Cameroon and UN. Wide-ranging Reforms on UN Systems Cameroon also entered the annals of UN history as one of the over a hundred countries that endorsed the Secretary General's proposed reforms to better focus the organisation on meeting the needs of man. The Head of State through the Minister of External Relations, Lejeune Mbella Mbella and the Minister, Director of Civil Cabinet at the Presidency of the Republic, Martin Belinga Eboutou participated in a high-level "Reforming the United Nations: Management, Security and Development," forum during which countries came out with a Political Declaration in support of Antonio Guterres. The political posture, piloted by the US President Donald Trump, is to support Antonio Guterres in making concrete changes in the United Nations System to better align to work on humanitarian response, development and sustaining peace initiatives. The Ten-point Political Declaration gives Mr Guterres the leeway to spearhead varied reforms notably a review of the Peace and Security Architecture, the development and management systems, the counter-terrorism system and the UN response to sexual exploitation and abuses committed by its personnel likewise gender parity within the organisation.

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