Namibian Ambassador to France, Albertus Aochamub has described as a tremendous honour, the country’s recent election to serve on the highest decision making body of Paris-based United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), its Executive Board, for the period 2019 to 2023.
The Executive Board is elected by the UNESCO General Conference and is one of the three constitutional organs of that body. It consists of 58 member states with a four-year term of office. Each Member State appoints one representative and may also appoint alternates. Aochamub will be representing Namibia on this organ following the just concluded conference, where Namibia garnered 156 out of a total of 180 votes.
Speaking to this newspaper in an electronic communiqué, Aochamub stressed that there is a need to thank those countries that have trust in our contribution within the context of this multilateral organ of the United Nations. He maintained that the number of votes won by Namibia represent a significant vote of confidence in the country’s ability to represent itself and Africa as a whole, on the Board.
“Naturally we have our domestic priorities which we can now push on this multilateral platform as part of a community of nations. In that light our National Development Plans (NDPs) and the accelerated priorities as contained in the Harambee Prosperity Plan (HPP) are the basis of our diplomatic work at UNESCO and other multilateral platforms,” Aochamub said.
“We are also mindful of our responsibility to push the common SADC and continental agenda at the same time. After all, we are part of a larger family on the continent,” the diplomat noted. Equally important, according to Aochamub, is UNESCO’s own medium-term strategy and overall reform agenda which he said cannot be overlooked, as those are the guiding frameworks for the Board in the collective quest to entrench true multilateralism to foster peace.
He further stressed that as a nation, Namibia has to make a mark in relation to the aforesaid strategy and reforms, in the next four years, even if the entire programme runs for eight years.
“In the words of our President Hage Geingob, Namibia is a child of international solidarity mid-wifed by the United Nations; as such we pride ourselves on being accorded a chance to play our part in the management of world affairs at one of the UN’s most important organisations,” Aochamub said.
Corroborating Aochamub’s sentiments, political science lecturer and political analyst Ndumba Kamuayah hailed Namibia’s inclusion as a move in the right direction.
Said Kamuayah; “Being recognised at that level is a good thing. It shows that Namibia has come of age in terms of its contribution to global politics and that world has taken notice of our ability to inform and influence development at a global stage.”