15 May 2007
Yesterday, the United Nations Office for Partnerships hosted an event to further advance Africa’s partnership strategy. Participants included several ambassadors to the United Nations, senior Microsoft representatives, foundation and business leaders, including philanthropist Ted Turner, founder of the United Nations Foundation, Louise MacBain, founder of the Louise T. Blouin Foundation, and senior United Nations officials.
United Nations Deputy Secretary-General Asha-Rose Migiro stated that “African development is one of the highest priorities of the United Nations. We will need to work on many fronts if Africa’s people are to achieve the Millennium Development Goals, triumph over poverty and enjoy sustainable peace and well-being.” She underscored that, “recently, [Microsoft] announced that it is increasing its commitment and investments to bring new social and economic opportunities to developing and emerging segments around the world through Microsoft Unlimited Potential. Africa will be a key focus for this programme, and we welcome this important effort. I thank everyone involved in making it possible, and look forward to the positive results it will no doubt bring for the men, women and children of Africa.” The Deputy Secretary-General noted that she was “delighted that Microsoft is working with the United Nations Office for Partnerships, which is facilitating innovative alliances for the entire UN system.”
Orlando Ayala, Senior Vice-President, Emerging Segments Market Development, Microsoft Corp., detailed Microsoft efforts “to use technology, training and partnerships to help bring sustained social and economic opportunity to the estimated 5 billion people who are not yet realizing the benefits of technology”. He continued by noting that, “through the expansion of Microsoft Unlimited Potential, the company is renewing and accelerating its long-term commitment to transform education, foster local innovation and enable jobs and opportunities to help give the people of Africa a chance achieve their full potential”.