29th Session (2007)
General Debate: United Republic of Tanzania
Statement by Ms. Grace Mujuma, Representative of the Permanent Mission of the United Republic of Tanzania to the United Nations (2 May 2007)
May I take this opportunity to join others in congratulating you on your election as Chair of this Committee and to wish you success in discharging your duties. Our congratulations also extend to the new members of the Bureau.
My delegation also wishes to extend its sincere congratulations to Mr. Kiyotaka Akasaka on his appointment as Under-Secretary General for Communications and Public Information and assure him of our delegation's support in discharging his noble duties. We further express appreciation to the Under-Secretary-General for his very comprehensive presentation, as well as for the informative dialogue held on 30 April 2007.
We also warmly welcome the Dominican Republic and Thailand as members of the Committee.
As we add our country's voice to this debate, my delegation wishes to associate itself with the statement made by the distinguished Representative of Pakistan on behalf of the Group of 77 and China.
Tanzania attaches great importance to the work of the Department of Public Information (DPI) as the public voice of the United Nations to the world community at large. We recognize DPI's efforts to strategically communicate the activities and messages of the UN so as to achieve the greatest public impact. It is in this regard that we commend its efforts of inclusiveness of a wider number of clients in its activities which will no doubt promote to the greatest possible extent an understanding of the United Nations' mandated efforts to the people of the world who also regard this body as an authoritative source of information on global issues.
While we commend the very able and professional manner in which the DPI conducts its work, we are glad that our contributions to this Committee continue to assist the Department in the improvement of its performance which needs to go hand in hand with these efforts as a way of perfecting its work and continuing to promote a positive public image of the United Nations.
We are very encouraged by DPI's continued focus and coverage on the very important thematic issues of the Millennium Declaration and Millennium Development Goals, NEPAD, violence against children, the Rwanda genocide, dialogue among civilizations, UN reforms, to mention a few, and appeal for their continued prominence.
Our delegation continues to underscore the great importance of the activities of the United Nations Information Centres (UNICs). Their role of enhancing the public image of the UN and disseminating UN messages to the people, particularly in our developing countries, continues to be relevant and even more vital.
We believe that effective utilization of UNICs will continue promoting public awareness of and mobilize support for the work of the United Nations at the local level, bearing in mind that information transmitted, particularly in local languages, produces the strongest impact on local populations due to their ability to easily comprehend.
In this regard, we wish to reiterate that any further rationalization of the network of UNICs should be undertaken on a case-by-case basis in consultation with the concerned Member States where they are located, those served by them and other interested countries in the region, taking cognizance of the distinguishing characteristics of each region. This should also go hand in hand with provision of adequate resources.
Our delegation supports the enhancing of multilingualism in the dissemination of information with urgency to keep up with the pace of the distribution of information so that a wide spectrum of the population is able to benefit from the messages transmitted about the UN since they are the target.
Peacekeeping has been an ongoing process. My delegation is very pleased to note the further consolidation of cooperation between the DPI and the United Nations Peacekeeping Operations and urges for their further enhancement so as to continue raising awareness of the peacekeeping activities in totality and the challenges faced and the way they are addressed. It is important that the people, particularly those in conflict areas, are made aware of the sensitive and sacrificial tasks that are made to resolve these conflicts and their positive contribution can make a difference and it is only through awareness that such a change can take place.
My delegation is encouraged that the department continues to recognize that radio remains one of the most important, cost-effective and far-reaching traditional media available to the DPI to reach people, especially in fewer developing countries that for reasons of development are not able to take advantage of the upcoming various technological instruments. Its continued maximum utilization in disseminating UN messages will be advantageous to them.
In conclusion, my delegation reiterates its support to the DPI in its accomplishments and also pledges our strong support to the Chairman in steering the Committee’s work to an amicable conclusion.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.