|Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York|
Secretary-General Hails ‘Match against Poverty’ For Showing How United
Nations, World Of Sport Can Work Together To Achieve Millennium Goals
Following is UN Secretary-General Ban Ki–moon’s message to the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) “Match against Poverty”, as delivered by Wilfried Lemke, Special Adviser to the Secretary-General on Sport for Development and Peace, in Lisbon, Portugal, today, 25 January:
This year’s “Match against Poverty” takes on additional importance in the aftermath of the devastating earthquake in Haiti. I am delighted to know that the proceeds of today’s game will go to the millions of people there who need our solidarity and assistance. We at the United Nations welcome your solidarity at the country’s time of dire need.
I thank the United Nations Development Programme for organizing this seventh edition of the “Match against Poverty”. Thank you also to [Zinedine] Zidane, Kaká and the Benefica All Stars football club. As world-famous athletes, you are giving hope to children, young people and adults who have lost everything. I call on the world of sport and its supporters around the world to continue to help the United Nations in its efforts to help the people of Haiti to recover and rebuild.
I would also like to take this opportunity to call on everyone to remember the victims of recent attacks on sporting events -- most notably in Angola and Pakistan -- in which competitors and fans alike were victims. Such horrendous acts must strengthen our resolve to use sport as a force for peacebuilding and reconciliation.
This “Match against Poverty” shows yet again how athletes, the United Nations family and the world of sport can work together to achieve the Millennium Development Goals and to build a better world. In games such as this, everyone is a winner.
* *** *For information media • not an official record