An international group of MPs calls for a body to strengthen the democratic representation of the world’s citizens in global affairs and the UN’s decision-making.
The UN, the multilateral order and democracy are under attack. Business as usual and lofty rhetoric are not sufficient to counter this threat. Despite many warnings and recommendations, not much has been done to prepare the UN for this challenge. The time for complacency and complaints is over. Now courageous leadership is needed.
The panel of eminent persons on UN-civil society relations warned almost 15 years ago that the UN must do more to strengthen global governance and tackle democratic deficits. The panel stressed that more systematic engagement of parliamentarians, national parliaments and local authorities in the UN would strengthen global governance, confront democratic deficits in intergovernmental affairs, buttress representational democracy and connect the UN better with global opinion. Current arrangements are not adequate.
When the international campaign for a UN parliamentary assembly (UNPA) was launched 11 years ago, the campaign’s patron, the late former UN secretary general Boutros Boutros-Ghali said we need to promote the democratisation of globalisation, before globalisation destroys the foundations of democracy.
It is with great concern that we are now witnessing how this development is unfolding. The establishment of a parliamentary assembly at the UN has become an indispensable step to achieve democratic control of globalisation.
We, the undersigning members of parliament, affirm our commitment to the goal of creating a UNPA in order to strengthen the democratic representation of the world’s citizens in global affairs and the UN’s decision-making.
We invite our fellow MPs from across the world who are democratically elected to join our parliamentary group for a UNPA in order to strengthen and coordinate our efforts. Together we can help build the political momentum and pressure that is needed to achieve our goal.
We believe the 75th anniversary of the UN in 2020 must be used as an opportunity to take stock and initiate far-reaching reforms, including the establishment of a UNPA.
We call on the UN secretary general, the president of the general assembly, the heads of states and governments and their foreign ministers as well as the representatives of UN member states in New York to initiate and support necessary steps in preparation of a meaningful UN reform summit in 2020 and towards the creation of a UNPA.
Alban Bagbin Member of parliament, Ghana
Tommy Broughan Member of parliament, Ireland
Ibrahim Bundu Former member of parliament, Sierra Leone
Omar De Marchena González Member of parliament, Dominican Republic
Jennifer De Temmerman Member of parliament, France
Sigmar Gabriel Member of parliament and former foreign minister, Germany
Nik Gugger Member of parliament, Switzerland
Jens Holm Member of parliament, Sweden
Andrej Hunko Member of parliament, Germany
Fernando Iglesias Member of parliament, Argentina
Daniel Jositsch Senator, Switzerland
Katja Keul Member of parliament, Germany
Jameleddine Khemakhem Former member of parliament, Tunisia
Jo Leinen Member of the European parliament, Germany
Fungayi Jessie Majome Former member of parliament, Zimbabwe
Yannis Maniatis Member of parliament and former minister of environment, energy and climate change, Greece
David Martin Member of the European parliament, Scotland
Smári McCarthy Member of parliament, Iceland
Stevens Mogkalapa Former member of parliament, South Africa
Florence Mutua Member of parliament, Kenya
Sunil B Pant Member of parliament, Nepal
Victor Perli Member of parliament, Germany
Lilia Puig Member of parliament, Argentina
Syed Naveed Qamar Member of parliament and former minister of defence, Pakistan
Achyuta Samanta Member of parliament, India
Axel Schäfer Member of parliament, Germany
Uwe Schummer Member of parliament, Germany
Stefan Schwartze Member of parliament, Germany
Ivone Soares Member of parliament, Mozambique
Mathias Stein Member of parliament, Germany
Nomsa Tarabella-Marchesi Member of parliament, South Africa
George Vella Former member of parliament and former foreign minister, Malta
Heinrich Volmink Former member of parliament, South Africa
Original source: The Guardian
Image credit: Wikimedia Commons