22 June 2007

Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York

Secretary-General accepts resignation of desertification convention chief

The following statement was issued today by the Spokesperson for the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon:

The Secretary-General has accepted the resignation of Hama Arba Diallo as Executive Secretary of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD), effective 19 June 2007.  Mr. Diallo was recently elected as a member of the National Assembly of Burkina Faso and, accordingly, had tendered his resignation effective that date, in accordance with applicable United Nations Rules and Regulations.

The Secretary-General has accepted Mr. Diallo’s resignation effective 19 June 2007 and, pending the selection of his successor, has designated his Deputy, Grégoire de Kalbermatten, as Officer-in-Charge.

The Secretary-General has expressed to Mr. Diallo his appreciation for the valuable service he has rendered to the Organization and for his leadership role in steering the Convention process.  The Secretary-General intends to initiate the search process in order to identify a suitable successor shortly.  This will be done in consultation with the Bureau of the Conference of Parties (COP) through its President with a view to completing the process before the next COP, which will be held in Madrid from 3 to 14 September 2007.

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For information media • not an official record