H.E. Mr. Mwai Kibaki, President
23 September 2008
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MWAI KIBAKI, President of Kenya, stressed the challenges that had arisen after his country’s general elections this past December. The hope for a peacefully negotiated outcome of the political crisis had been realized with the signing of the National Accord and Reconciliation Agreement in February, which had paved the way to a grand coalition Government representing all major political parties and interests. That historical event had led to great progress in legal, constitutional and policy reforms, and Kenya had once again moved towards being a peaceful nation that welcomed investment and tourism. In that recovery and growth, Kenya had also laid the foundation to be a regional hub for peace and humanitarian efforts.
He went on to say that the issues facing all of Africa, among others, competitive elections in fragile democracies, religious and ethnic differences and food shortages, could successfully be addressed by the attainment of democratic and inclusive elected Governments. He offered examples of the Sudan maintaining the Comprehensive Peace Agreement despite recent difficulties, as opposed to the Transitional Federal Government of Somalia, which was still in a fragile state due to a lack of full support from the international community.
He believed that widespread commercialization of agriculture would bring the African people out of poverty, and called for partnerships between developed nations, international institutions and developing nations to place food security, agricultural technology transfer, trade and agricultural credit at the centre of the development agenda.
He urged a consensus on the contentious issues regarding agriculture through the successful conclusion of the Doha Development Round of the World Trade Organization. He also noted that the rapid increase in oil prices impacted developing countries the most, and that such inequity did not lend itself to world peace and stability. He appealed to the oil-producing nations to consider the plight of non oil-importing countries, especially those in the developing world.
However, to successfully challenge the hardships of the poorest countries and the interrelated global issues that all Member States faced, he called for the democratization of the United Nations and reform of the Security Council, beginning with Africa having a permanent representative on that 15-nation body. That would accurately reflect an equitable geographical representation of the United Nations membership and successfully impact the issues facing Africa and the world today.