by Kevon Browne
St. Kitts and Nevis (WINN): Dr. Ralph Gonsalves, Prime Minister and Minister for National Security, Legal Affairs and Information of St. Vincent and the Grenadines, in his addresses during the general debate of the 78th Session of the General Assembly of the United Nations on September 23, said that it is evident that some countries will inevitably fall short of meeting the Sustainable Development Goals, especially as it relates to the stagnant status of Climate Action.
“It is widely acknowledged that the global political economy is broken and needs fixing, not by tinkering here or there, but through fundamental restructuring of a kind that endures for the benefit of all humanity, especially those who are disadvantaged, dispossessed or marginalised. It is also widely acknowledged that the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) will not be attained by 2030; indeed, there will be a significant deficit for practically every developing country. Similarly, it is widely recognised that the climate change agenda is stalling, and in some respects, reversing, with dire consequences for humanity.”
The Vincentian Prime Minister continued listing many of the world’s malcontents, including drug and human trafficking, the reparations debate, xenophobia, the insecurity of women and girls and more.
“Contemporary drivers of insecurity and conflict are all jostling in an invidious march to infamy and human misery. The expansive and expanding list includes racism and xenophobia, the continuing oppression of women under patriarchy in too many countries, the seemingly uncontrollable chariots of artificial intelligence.”
Dr. Gonsalves continued, “The threatening pandemics and the anti-people consortium of Big Pharma, poverty and food insecurity, ignorance, miseducation and disinformation, terrorism and its associated malcontents, the illegal trafficking in persons and narcotics, the subversion of participatory democracy and human rights, the failure and/or refusal of former colonial powers to entertain just and legitimate demands for reparations to repair the contemporary legacies of underdevelopment caused by native genocide and the enslavement of African bodies and the failure and/or refusal of the major emitters of greenhouse gases to cough up the requisite resources to the affected vulnerable countries for the required adaptation, mitigation, loss and damage and the list goes on. The heard melodies are troubling; those unheard are damning.”
The Caribbean leader continued in his address to hold the leaders of the most powerful countries’ feet to the fire on several global issues spanning geopolitical conflicts and war to the economic crisis still grappling the international markets.
“Powerful countries and blocks of like-minded states are unwilling or unable to fashion inclusive and efficacious modalities through a genuine multilateralism to address the external challenges facing humanity. Their actions in quests of a continuing imperium or an emergent hegemony are dressed up as self-serving calls for a new world order. All sauce and gall but have little or no substance; difficult to swallow. From the rough trenches of the periphery, St. Vincent and Grenadines causes yet again in response 3 haunting questions: what’s new, which world and who gives the orders?”
Prime Minister Gonsalves added, “In this context, the urgency of genuine reforms of the United Nations Security Council is to be embraced after decades of futile bickering and foot-dragging. Surely, it is long overdue for sensible compromises on this matter, reflective of the contemporary condition of our world. In these troubled and uncertain times, enveloped in limitations and weaknesses, there are nevertheless possibilities and strengths. The wise and mature leadership of this collective, The United Nations, is immediately required in this great endeavour to put things right for humanity. We gathered here as representatives of national or regional interests are not and cannot reasonably be agents of purely impersonal forces, driving humanity inexorably to further peril and even damnation.”
The general debate of the 78th Session of the United Nations General Assembly continues until September 26, 2023.
Watch SVG Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves’ full address here: