October 30, 2010
STATEMENT BY H.E. Mr. Shekou M. Touray , Ambassador and Permanent Representative at the 65th Session of the United Nations General Assembly On Post-conflict peace building , New York, Friday, 29th October, 2010
Distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen
It is a pleasure to make a statement on the Review of the Peacebuilding Commission in accordance with General Assembly Resolution A/RES/60/180 as set out in document A/64/868 which is based on extensive consultations with the UN membership and other stakeholders.
The path to sustainable peace after violent conflict is an immense challenge that requires the collective and sustained effort of the international community and local stakeholders. The creation of the Peacebuilding Commission in 2005 during the 60th UNGA is therefore not only very relevant in coordinating and supporting prorammes aimed at preventing relapse into conflict but a laudable initiative by the United Nations.
As recorded in the former UN Secretary General Boutros Boutros-Ghali’s Agenda for Peace, issued in 1992, Peacebuilding largely involves “action to identify and support structures which will tend to strengthen and solidify peace in order to avoid a relapse into conflict”.
It therefore becomes imperative to obtain security and an end to hostilities on one hand, and on the other to engage in the parallel longer term process of consolidating peace � by reconciling people and groups, reforming or rebuilding institutions, structures and economies � to diminish the possibility of a violent relapse.
The establishment of the Peacebuilding Support Office and Peacebuilding Fund, as well as the selection of Sierra Leone and Burundi as the first two countries together with Guinea Bissau and Central African Republic, and now Liberia, on the peacebuilding agenda, have raised high expectations for peacebuilding. As highlighted in the draft resolution, the peacebuilding work of the United Nations requires sustained support and adequate resources to meet challenges. The comprehensive review of the work of the PBC is very crucial in determining lapses and progress made and what is required to achieve its mandate.
As noted in the Secretary General’s Report S/2010/471 to the Security Council, a delegation of the PBC visited Sierra Leone in March, 2010 and recognized the progress made since the end of the war and cited our experience as a successful example of multilateral peacebuilding. The PBC delegation also reported that significant challenges remained to be addressed before Sierra Leone could fully realize its long-term sustainable development aspirations. International support for overcoming the remaining obstacles is therefore very vital more so as we get closer to the 2012 elections.
On 28th September, 2010, my delegation submitted to the PBC a joint progress report on the implementation of Sierra Leone Government’s Agenda for Change. The report jointly prepared by the Government in full collaboration with its international partners and civil society acknowledges the steady progress made in the implementation of the agenda for change but equally pointed out serious gaps and challenges owing mainly to the lack of funding and the need to address capacity constraints. Key among the many outstanding issues that require immediate attention are: youth unemployment; implementation of the recommendations of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission; drug trafficking and transnational organized crime; support to the electoral process; and advancing good governance reform.
Sierra Leone Government’s Agenda for Change (Poverty Reduction Strategy Paper II) was prepared, adopted and is being implemented through inclusive, broad-based and comprehensive consultations and participation. It received endorsement by the PBC in June 2009, and at that historic meeting, the Commission also called upon its member states and all development partners to accept the Agenda for Change as the core strategy document for Sierra Leone. This, no doubt, implied the compelling need for PBC member states and development partners to support implementation of the Agenda with sufficient resources.
While my delegation continue to express appreciation to the United Nations and our development Partners for support to the implementation of the Agenda for Change, it is regrettable that the Multi-Donor Trust Fund is yet to receive the level of support envisaged when the fund was launched. To date only the Government of Canada has contributed to the trust fund.
My delegation therefore supports the draft resolution and urges other delegations to join us in doing so