September 21, 2030
Excellencies, Heads of State and Government;
Heads of Delegations;
Ladies and Gentlemen:
On behalf of the Government and People of Liberia, and in my own name, I would like to take this occasion to extend warm greetings and heartfelt congratulations to the United Nations on the Seventy-Fifth anniversary of its founding.
Liberia is a founding member of the United Nations. We were one of only four African nations signed the UN Charter in 1945. Since then, we have stood firmly by the ideals and principles of the United Nations as enshrined in that document, which has stood the test of time.
Today, as a Nation and as a People, we renew that commitment. We strongly believe that, in spite of its imperfections and shortcomings, the United Nations is still the most effective forum for ensuring international peace and security. Through its many humanitarian agencies, it has been very effective in the advancement and development of humanity, and the protection of human rights and the vulnerable in society.
Over the years since its founding, however, there have been the constantly changing dynamics of international configurations of power and influence, as well as shifting alliances, which have given rise to the need to re-examine and perhaps re-define the mission and vision of the United Nations so that it can become more relevant and responsive to the new realities.
Accordingly, in 2015, the United Nations established a new set of Sustainable Development Goals (SDG’s) to replace the former Millennium Development Goals, with an Agenda to achieve these goals by the year 2030. They are meant to be a roadmap for our collective efforts to bring peace and prosperity to all mankind.
Today, already five years into the 15-year Agenda, we pause to observe this SDG Moment, and to take stock of our progress so far along this important roadmap. With only ten (10) years left, it is already clear that we will have to re-double our efforts and accelerate our actions in many areas if we are to attain any or all of these lofty goals by the end of this decade.
In so doing, we must take into account the fact that the advent of the COVID-19 pandemic has not only slowed our progress, but has also exposed in many ways the vulnerabilities and shortcomings of the current international world order. The impact is especially felt in the areas of income inequality, poverty reduction, and sexual and gender-based violence, as well as discrimination against women and girls.
It is important, therefore, that in our response to the COVID-19 pandemic, our search for solutions will be guided within the framework of these Global Goals, in a manner that will accelerate our transition to more sustainable and inclusive economies.
As we confront these new challenges, multilateralism, international cooperation, and global solidarity will become increasingly important in addressing the complex problems the world now has to grapple with. The extent of that cooperation will determine how rapidly Member States, specially developing nations, will recover from the impact of COVID-19 and endeavor to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals.
The future we want is a United Nations that is more equitable and inclusive. We must have an inclusive society so that no one is left behind; and all member states must do their part in order to ensure that the UN is relevant to everyone. The United Nations we need is expected to continue to deliver on its commitments, with emphasis on the pillars and principles enshrined in its Charter, and must also continue to respond to global challenges with the over-arching goal of “Leaving No One Behind”.
Let us all, therefore, take urgent and concrete actions towards the implementation of the 2030 Agenda and the timely attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals.