Hisham: M’sia fully supports more engagement with society


  • Nation
  • Saturday, 04 Jul 2020

PUTRAJAYA: Malaysia is fully supportive of greater civil society engagements in the United Nations as well as strengthening multilateralism, says Foreign Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein (pic).

The 75th anniversary of the UN this year, he said, serves as the catalyst for Malaysia to deepen the partnership with civil society to identify gaps and reform the system.

Heeding the call of UN secretary-general Antonio Guterres, he said there was a need to give more meaning to the phrase “we the peoples” and promote a more people-centric concept of multilateralism. “We need to ensure the UN remains relevant and beneficial for our people, as an abdication of responsibility will be a betrayal of the future, ” he said at a virtual gathering of the “UN75 National Conversation: The Future We Want and The UN We Need” from here yesterday.

He said the Covid-19 crisis is a wake-up call for all in the global community and the pandemic further compounded the effects of conflicts and poverty, to economic instability and climate change.

“We must get to grips with the fact that the UN needs to be reformed and the 75th anniversary serves as the perfect year to take stock of our achievements and move forward with the changes to make it a more effective international organisation.

“History will judge us and the actions we take today will determine what we want the UN to look like in 25 years at the 100th anniversary, ” he added.

Hishammuddin said Malaysia stood ready to play its part and today’s deliberations and discussions would pave the way for a stronger partnership between Malaysia and the UN to jointly address common challenges in fighting Covid-19.

As a display of Malaysia’s commitment and firm conviction in advancing global peace, security and prosperity, Hishammuddin said Malaysia led an initiative to launch a “Statement of Support to the UN Secretary-General’s Appeal for a Global Ceasefire amid the Covid-19 Pandemic”, which now enjoys the support of 172 member states, non-member observer states and observers.

“It is crucial to allow nations, including those that have suffered from conflict, to focus their attention on addressing the deadly pandemic and its aftermath, ” he added.

Calling for an equitable Covid-19 vaccine, Hishammuddin said Malaysia believed the manufacturing of the vaccine must promote international collaboration rather than nationalistic competition.

“This is where the UN can play a more proactive role to place stronger emphasis on an equitable, accessible and affordable vaccine for all.

“Global solidarity on this is needed now more than ever and time is not on our side. We must work fast as this could be the only chance we get, ” he said. — Bernama

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