Secretary-General's remarks at Kibera Slum
Nairobi, Kenya, 30 January 2007SG: I feel very much humbled by what I am seeing now. That makes me resolve again my firm commitment to work for the improvement of the living conditions, education, water, sanitation, housing - all these are the challenges which we must overcome. This situation, these circumstances are not of your making. This is something all -- government and members of the United Nations international community -- must work together. Not a single nation, not a single person, including myself as Secretary-General, is able to do that. We need to have a firm commitment. My visit to your country and my participation in the African Union summit meeting which was held in Addis Ababa gave me very useful opportunities to understand and appreciate the challenges and problems of all African people. This may be just a part of many billions of people's difficulties which we are having now. Please do not lose your hope. I bring the message of hope and promise and as Secretary-General I will try my best efforts. The African issues and challenges are one of my top priorities as Secretary-General of the United Nations. I'll work together with you, I'll work together with the Government and with the Member States of the United Nations.
Please keep your faith, keep your hope and I will try my best efforts to help make your living conditions better in the future. Thank you very much. All the best to you.
This gives me a very useful opportunity to look at, first hand, the problems and challenges we are having at this time. This is not the only place, I know. There are many other billions of people suffering from lack of affordable housing - all the facilities which make our life decent. I, as the Secretary-General, as a part of the Millennium Development Goals -- we must work together and generate political will to have a smooth implementation of the Millennium Development Goals and I will work very closely, and harder than before. This has given me a very good opportunity to resolve my commitment. I sincerely hope that the citizens living in this neighbourhood should not lose their hope. I bring a message of hope and promise for the better future, for better days to come.
Q: Mr. Secretary-General, I am from Prensa Latina news agency. The general reform of the UN is one of your priorities?
SG: Yes, reform of the United Nations is one of my top priorities again. I am now doing my best efforts to make the United Nations more effective, more efficient, more relevant in addressing all the challenges and issues of the 21st century. We have so many challenges, conventional challenges and non-conventional challenges. This may be part of the conventional challenges which we have: eradication of abject poverty, providing decent life, decent living conditions to all of our citizens around the world. It is a common task which we must overcome in close cooperation of all the world.
Q: Mr. Secretary-General, there is a plan by the Government to upgrade this slum. What is your organization doing to input on that programme as the UN?
SG: This slum challenge is, again, a very serious problem, as I have seen today. I will work harder than before to upgrade the living conditions as a part of the Millennium Development Goals. We need to have more sympathy and compassion towards the developing world from particularly the industrialized countries. I will work very closely with the donor countries and other members of the United Nations.
Off-the-Cuff on 30 January 2007