Global Challenges Focus Attention in New-York

Cameroon is present in New York with President Paul Biya leading a delegation to make the country’s voice heard at the UN.


As world leaders gather at the United Nations (UN) Headquarters in New York  from yesterday 19-23 September 2016 to brainstorm on the various issues that continue to hold back humanity from achieving development goals, Cameroon, through the presence of President Paul Biya is taking an active part in the debates. Discussions at the General Assembly which take place annually are this year tackling some of the most urgent challenges facing today’s world.

With the contribution that Cameroon has been making to harbour over 300,000 refugees and thousands of Internally Displaced Persons, the Minister of Territorial Administration and Decentralisation, Rene Emmanuel Sadi who has been handling files related to the refugee situation in the country, represented the Head of State at the high-level meeting in New York yesterday.  Minister Sadi was accompanied by the Minister of External Relations, Lejeune Mbella Mbella, and the Permanent Representative of Cameroon to the United Nations, Michel Tommo Monthe.

While attention yesterday was on the situation of the massive movement of migrants and refugees, deliberations will today delve into the Sustainable a Development Goals (SDGs) adopted last year. One year after the UN came out with 17 SDGs, the first anniversary of the launch is taking place today in New York and prior to the event, 17 youths were presented yesterday at the UN Headquarters who would work with the Secretariat of the UN Secretary-General to foster the objectives of the SDGs. They have been selected from a list of 18,000 nominations based on their outstanding leadership in efforts to achieve the SDGs.

The UN General Assembly discussions today, which will centre on the SDGs are therefore expected to see governments, the private sector and the civil society underline how they intend to quickly take actions that will be vital to end poverty, address inequalities and tackle climate change. Observers will be watching and wondering how feasible such promises could come to fruition given the difficulties witnessed in the Millennium Development Goals that were expected to have transformed the living conditions of most people by 2015. Agenda 2030 that the SDGs are targeting this time should therefore not just be a pipe-dream in the alleviation of suffering, but a palpable benchmark through which politicians should be able to present concrete results to the numerous global hurdles.

Another key concern that this year’s General Assembly debate at the UN has put on the table is the idea of Social Good. It is intended to bring together high-profile speakers to interact with hundreds of bloggers and digital media practitioners to create innovative solutions and advice on some of the setbacks in meeting earmarked goals. It is holding at the behest of the UN Foundation and the UNDP.

The same hope-raising concern will be demonstrated by Cameroonians and other world leaders who will have to listen to President Paul Biya here in New York when he addresses the General Assembly to say in concrete terms what the country has been doing to contribute to better living conditions both at home and abroad. In the past, Mr Biya has provided several genuine ideas to help shape the course of discussions at the United Nations. The resolution of conflicts by the world body has equally seen the Cameroon Head of State taking centre stage and having the country present citizens who have been seen as vital in enabling the UN play its role of stabilising conflict zones.


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