The following Security Council press statement was issued today by Council President Jerry Matthews Matjila (South Africa):
The Special Representative of the Secretary‑General in Guinea-Bissau and Head of the United Nations Integrated Peacebuilding Office in Guinea‑Bissau (UNIOGBIS), Rosine Sori-Coulibaly, briefed the members of the Security Council on 10 October 2019 on the political situation and the current electoral process in Guinea-Bissau. The members of the Security Council expressed their intention to monitor the developments in the country closely and reiterated the need to support the current Government, formed following the legislative elections of 10 March 2019, and this Government's mandate to manage governmental affairs and organize presidential elections.
The members of the Security Council reiterated the imperative need for the presidential election to be held on 24 November 2019, in accordance with the established electoral calendar, and reminded political actors that all efforts should be made to ensure the election is inclusive, credible, fair and peaceful with the effective participation of women and youth candidates.
The members of the Security Council urged political actors to ensure the proper functioning and stability of State institutions, and further urged political parties with parliamentary representation to ensure the continuity of the current Government and to ensure that the presidential election takes place according to the planned schedule.
The members of the Security Council encouraged the international community to support Guinea-Bissau in organizing the presidential elections, including by honouring any pledges to provide technical or financial support.
The members of the Security Council encouraged political actors to use legal and constitutional procedures to address any electoral dispute that may arise and to continue to refrain from acts of violence, hatred or aggression in order to ensure stability and the consolidation of peace in Guinea-Bissau.
The members of the Security Council urged the defence and security forces of Guinea-Bissau to continue to maintain strict neutrality throughout and beyond the electoral and political processes.
The members of the Security Council also commended the leadership of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and reiterated their continued support and commitment, in collaboration with regional and international actors, including the Group of Five in Bissau (African Union, Community of Portuguese Language Countries, ECOWAS, European Union, United Nations) for the consolidation of peace, stability and development in Guinea-Bissau.