By Deogratias Mmana, Mana, Usa:
President Peter Mutharika has, once again, asked the United Nations (UN) to grant African countries two permanent seats in the UN Security Council.
Mutharika made the demand on Monday when he addressed the Nelson Mandela Global Peace Summit during the 73rd UN General Assembly in New York, the United States.
“We call upon the UN to accommodate African representation through two permanent seats in the UN Security Council. However, the UN will make more progress protecting and maintaining peace by involving Africa in its decision-making processes,” Mutharika said.
The summit was held to celebrate the centenary birthday of South African freedom icon Mandela (deceased).
Mutharika urged UN members to reflect on the role which Mandela played in peace-building.
“Let us also reflect on the role which Africa can play in this cause. The world needs Africa peace more than ever. Let us rise up and take our place in the global community,” he said.
Mutharika asked the UN to adopt the African Common position from Ezulwini Consensus agreed in Swaziland in 2005 when the demand for the African permanent seats was made.
The consensus is a position on international relations and reform of the UN, agreed by the African Union.
It calls for a more representative and democratic Security Council in which Africa, like all other countries in world regions, is represented.
African countries demanded the reform of the Security Council because they observed that it is outdated.
The countries observed that, out of the five permanent members—China, France, Russia, the United Kingdom and the United States—with veto power, none is from Africa yet the continent provides the largest membership of the UN.
In addition, the council is made up of 10 other non-permanent members elected for two-year terms by the UN General Assembly but these members do not have veto powers.
According to www.sardc. net, a permanent seat for Africa on the Security Council will allow the continent to have a voice in decision-making organisations of the UN, setting the stage for the reconstructing of global affairs.
The consensus also calls for the expansion of the council from 15 to 26 members.
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