Thursday, October 02, 2008

Namibian President Pohamba Tells UN Secretary-General to Help Zimbabwe

Help Zim, Pohamba tells UN chief


WINDHOEK, NAMIBIAN President Cde Hifikepunye Pohamba has appealed to the world community through United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to provide financial and humanitarian assistance to Zimbabwe.

Cde Pohamba and his entourage met Ban Ki-moon in New York during the UN General Assembly last week.

"We also emphasised the need that the economic sanctions imposed on Zimbabwe be lifted after the historic power-sharing agreement was signed between Zimbabwean political parties Zanu-PF and the two Movement for Democratic Change factions two weeks ago," he told the media soon after his arrival at Hosea Kutako International Airport from New York on Sunday.

The agreement formalised the establishment of an inclusive government in Zimbabwe.

Economic sanctions that should be lifted include the ones where Western countries are using their control or blocking votes to prevent Zimbabwe from accessing the economic support it is entitled to from those multilateral institutions where it holds membership.

Cde Pohamba further indicated to the secretary-general the need to start inter-governmental institutions aimed at dealing with the expansion and democratisation of the UN Security Council.

For years, Africa has been calling for the reform of the UN Security Council, proposing that two permanent positions and five non-permanent positions be allocated for Africa.

"We reiterated this call for the reform of the UN Security Council," Cde Pohamba said.

In addition, the Namibian leader said during the debate at the UN General Assembly, world leaders discussed issues pertaining to unprecedented global crises.

The crises include the turmoil in the financial markets, skyrocketing food and fuel prices, and global warming.

He said world leaders are thus calling for an international response to these crises.

Two high-level meetings were held during the General Assembly, with one focusing on Africa to discuss challenges and constraints facing the continent.

"We also discussed the needs and way forward to solve those challenges facing Africa," he noted.

The other high-level meeting was on the evaluation of the status of the Millennium Development Goals with the aim to identify the needs and challenges facing countries on implementing those goals.

He said the summary and way forward on the MDGs meeting would be made available to the UN Secretary-General at a later stage. — Nampa.

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