Your Excellency, the President of the 68th Session
of the United Nations General Assembly, Mr John William Ashe, Your Majesties, Your Excellences, Heads of State and Government, Your Excellency, the
Secretary-General of the United Nations, Mr Ban Ki-moon, Distinguished
Delegates, Ladies and Gentlemen, Comrades and Friends
me begin by extending warmest congratulations to you Mr John William Ashe, on
your election as President of the 68tb Session of the General Assembly. Your
election to this esteemed office is a befitting tribute to the personal and
diplomatic qualities that you have exhibited over the years.
the world, peace and development have remained the dominant themes of our
times. People all over the world have been raising their voices in favour of
peace, development and cooperation and against war, poverty and confrontation.
Here at the UN we all acknowledge that peace, security, development and human
rights are the pillars of the UN system and the cornerstones of our collective
this regard, the theme for this Session - The Post-2015 Agenda: Setting the
Stage - is quite pertinent and timely as it gives fresh impetus to our
undertaking that achieving the internationally agreed Development Goals,
including the MDGs and mapping the way forward beyond 2015, requires our
collective efforts. The UN, as the centre for international cooperation, should
lead in promoting the envisaged development.
years ago, our global efforts were mobilised behind the Millennium Development
Goals (MDGs) and we now have less that 1,000 days to meet those targets. Our
review and stock taking exercise reveal that while there have been some
significant achievements, there are still gaps and unevenness in the attainment
of these goals. In the case of Zimbabwe, we have made progress towards
achieving universal access to primary education, combating HIV/AIDS, malaria
of the goals, however, are, due to lack of capacity, mainly financial, off
track and in some areas, progress has stalled including in those areas relating
to the eradication of poverty and hunger, child mortality, universal access to
maternal and reproductive health, environmental sustainability and access to
potable water and sanitation.
a country, we are committed to undertake coordinated efforts to accelerate
progress to complete the unfinished business of the MDGs in the remaining
period to 2015. Any unachieved goals by then, should be integrated into the
post-2015 development agenda.
fully shares and supports the emerging consensus that eradicating poverty in
all its dimensions should be the overarching goal of our post 2015 agenda.
Eradicating poverty by 2030 may be an ambitious goal, but it is attainable if
we mobilise our collective efforts. Building on the foundation of the MDGs, the
post 2015 agenda should go beyond the social development agenda of the MDGs and
achieve structural transformation in our economies that delivers inclusive and
expect a shift that will bring about industrialisation, decent jobs and
qualitative change to the lives of our citizens. We are determined to modernise
our infrastructure and ensure access to sustainable energy for all, food
security and nutrition. However, we recognise that we cannot do this in
isolation from other partners.
the same vein, we also support calls to prioritise gender equality, the health
related MDGs, education and environmental sustainability in the post-2015
development agenda among other issues. These are critical issues in our quest
to achieve sustainable development for all our people.
lofty objectives of the UN Charter in the economic arena will remain
unfulfilled unless all Member States join in efforts genuinely and seriously,
to address challenges that developing countries face in their pursuit of
development including meeting the MDGs.
is therefore imperative that our discussions address what has so far been the
weakest link - the means of implementation. It must be understood that in
addition to national efforts, substantial international support and an enabling
international economic environment are essential if the MDGs are to be achieved
by 2015 especially in Africa. It is therefore important to fulfil the
commitments made to support Africa in various international fora. The UN should
track the fulfilment of these commitments.
supports the reform of the UN to strengthen its central role in promoting
multilateralism and to be effective in tackling current and future global
challenges. We are convinced that the reform will strengthen the organisation's
capacity to fully promote and implement the principles and objectives of the UN
Charter and improve its democratic decision making.
this regard, the reforms in the economic and social actions of the UN remain of
fundamental importance to us. Our firm belief in multilateral cooperation means
that we place a premium in the ability of the United Nations system to deliver
efficient development co-operation.
democratic transformation of the architecture of the international financial
system is quintessential as is a root-and-branch reform of the international
trading system. The terms of trade have hugely burdened developing countries
for too long.
supports the ongoing efforts to revitalize the General Assembly which is the
most representative organ of the United Nations. We believe that the General
Assembly should take the lead in setting the global agenda and restore its
primacy that has over the years been encroached upon by other organs.
cannot accept situations whereby the UN Security Council is increasingly
encroaching on issues that traditionally fall within the General Assembly's
purview and competence, including in the area of norm setting.
recent events have revealed that its formal decisions have provided camouflage
to neo-imperialist forces of aggression seeking to militarily intervene in
smaller countries in order to effect regime change and acquire complete control
of their wealth. This was so in Libya where in the name of protecting
civilians, NATO forces were deployed with an undeclared mission to eliminate
Muammar Gaddafi and his family. A similar campaign had been undertaken in Iraq
by the Bush and Blair forces in the false name of eradicating weapons of mass
destruction which Saddam Hussein never possessed.
appreciate the central role that UN should play in furthering multilateralism
in preference to unilateralism. In this regard, we applaud the consultations
and negotiations on the eventual destruction of the chemical weapons in Syria.
My country expresses its gratitude and appreciation to Russia and China for
their principled stand on Syria. We hope and trust that the Syrian people will
soon sit in dialogue to discuss peace and desirable political reforms. Those
western countries in pursuit of hegemony as they pretend to be advocates of
democracy must be resisted.
Africa, the reform of the United Nations Security Council is especially long
overdue. The anachronistic and unrepresentative character of the Security
Council must be redressed. For how long should Africa continue to be denied the
right to play a pivotal role in the United Nations Security Council as it
decides measures on conflicts within its own borders?
Security Council needs to be more representative, democratic, transparent,
accountable and accessible to the wider membership for its decisions to have
more legitimacy. Africa's case for the correction of the glaring historical
injustice of being unrepresented in the permanent category and
under-represented in the non-permanent category has been made through the
clear, fair and well-articulated Ezulwini Consensus. Zimbabwe remains steadfast
in its support of the Ezulwini demand.
strongly condemns the use of unilateral economic sanctions as a foreign policy
tool to effect regime change. Thus, the illegal economic sanctions imposed on
Zimbabwe by the United States and the European Union violate fundamental
principles of the United Nations Charter on state sovereignty and
non-interference in the domestic affairs of a sovereign state.
these illegal sanctions continue to inflict economic deprivation and human
suffering on all Zimbabweans. In the eyes of our people, the sanctions
constitute a form of hostility and violence against them for the simple crime
of undertaking the land reform programme by which land was put in the hands of
the then majority landless Zimbabweans.
small and peaceful country is threatened daily by covetous and bigoted big
powers whose hunger for domination and control of other nations and their
resources knows no bounds. Shame, shame, shame to the United States of America.
Shame, shame, shame to Britain and its allies. Zimbabwe is for Zimbabweans, so
are its resources. Please remove your illegal and filthy sanctions from my
peaceful country. If these sanctions were intended to effect regime change,
well, the results of the recent national elections have clearly shown you what
they can do.
are preached to daily by the west on the virtues of democracy and freedom which
they do not totally espouse. Zimbabwe took up arms precisely to achieve our
freedom and democracy. Yet we have been punished by United States through the
odious Zimbabwe Democracy and Economic Recovery Act enacted in 2001 to effect
regime change in the country.
this malicious intent to continue the relentless persecution of our small and
peaceful country has happened again through the USA's rejection of the recent absolutely
democratic and fair election results of our July 31st general elections, even
as they were applauded by the African Union and all our regional organisations.
appears that when the USA and its allies speak of democracy and freedom they
are doing so only in relative terms. Zimbabwe however refuses to accept that
these western detractors have the right to define democracy and freedom for us.
We paid the ultimate price for it and we are determined never to relinquish our
sovereignty and remain masters of our destiny. As we have repeatedly asserted,
Zimbabwe will never be a colony again!!