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Relevance of the UN

October 3, 2012

Allen: Here is an interesting editorial from the Banjul, Gambia Daily Observer

Relevance of the UN

October 3, 2012

The vice president of the Republic questioned the relevance of the United Nations in the promotion of world peace and assisting sustainable development of less developed countries, as she addressed the 67th General Assembly. We herein add our voice on this fundamental question with a plea for the reform of the UN system so as to make the world body relevant and credible enough to confront the current geopolitical troubles in the world today.

It cannot be argued otherwise the quest for the UN to live up to its mandate has for long been compromised by global power imbalance, thus war and subjugation of the less powerful has become a permanent world reality. This is contrary to the 1945 meeting that gave the UN birth. Let us be reminded that in 1945, when the charter that established the UN was signed, it was realised that it is only international justice that can engender world peace; the United Nations was therefore expected to be a club among equals because nations regardless of power and strength have a crucial role to play in the promotion of international peace.

Unfortunately, the UN gradually departed from that mission and today the body is transformed into a body of the few.The vast majority of the world’s nations continue to be sidelined and denied chance to perform at the global political stage. The developing nations, the VP indicated, are a vivid example; even when it comes to the execution of the UN’s mandate, some nations are heavily punished for violating a simple UN resolution while others continue to violate most ifnot all UN resolutions with impunity.

More importantly, the UN, who most people trust to put an end to conflict in the world is itself condoning the world’s most unjustifiable wars.Such an order in the United Nations only renders the institution irrelevant as it lacks both the strength and capacity. The truth remains that the increase in the United Nations membership since the 60s coupled with a changing world calls for turning the Council into a truly representative organ.

But the Council was a body frozen in time and procedure while international realities had undergone great changes. It is therefore obvious that for the UN to become relevant and fulfill its mandate as required, it has to put its house in order first. A new world order is necessary to confront the growing challenges. A new order where all nations in the world have equal platform to perform on the world stage and equally to listen and to be listened to and as well equally influence international relation.

It is inconceivable for the Council to function effectively and efficiently without changing its current composition, and increasing the number of permanent and non-permanent seats. For the Council to maintain its relevance and credibility, it needed to evolve to complement the ever-changing world surrounding it. Collective efforts should be focused to ensure that the Council is a representative of the United Nations membership, were all Member States are able to voice their concerns and aspirations in matters related to world peace, security and development.

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