South Africa’s President, Cyril Ramaphosa, has urged the United Nations to spare no effort at ending racism and other forms of prejudice.
Ramaphosa, who is the Chairman of the African Union, made the call in his pre-recorded video statement to the UN General Assembly in New York on Tuesday. It is the UNGA General Debate since the death of African American, George Floyd, in police custody on May 25 sparked protests in the United States and around the world.
“The year 2020 will be remembered for the massive groundswell to push back the frontiers of racism under the umbrella of the #BlackLivesMatter movement.
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“As a country that has known too well the anguish of institutionalised racism, South Africa supports the demands for swift action against racism, whether committed by individuals, companies, officials or the state.
“South Africa calls on the United Nations to spare no effort to end prejudice and intolerance in all its forms and wherever it may be found. “In the words of Dr Martin Luther King Jnr: ‘Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere,’” he told the virtual world gathering.
Ramaphosa also expressed the commitment of his country and the AU to the pursuit of global peace and security.
“As African countries we will continue with our effort to ‘silence the guns’ once and for all through conflict resolution and peace-building. “Cooperation between the UN Security Council and the AU Peace and Security Council has contributed to improved peace and security in the Darfur region of Sudan, South Sudan, Somalia, Mali and the Central African Republic.
“It is imperative that this collaboration is institutionalised and that the financing of AU peacekeeping operations is addressed and resolved.
“South Africa is currently serving its second year as an elected non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council.
“We have used our tenure to promote international peace and security by advocating for the peaceful settlement of disputes and inclusive dialogue,” he added.