Criminals hiding under human rights to hurt Africa - Tinubu complains to Guterres
Tinubu noted that the UN must transform from being one of the world’s foremost talk shops to discuss global issues into becoming the world’s foremost action coordination centre.
In a meeting with UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, he said that human rights had been used to deter actions against such actors that smuggle out African resources and bring in Western-made weapons.
A statement issued by presidential spokesman Ajuri Ngelale disclosed that Tinubu said that distorted human rights advocacy has only benefited the wealthiest economies in the world at the expense of African stability and wealth creation.
“We are facing the great challenge of scavengers ravaging our lands and oppressing our people in illegal mines – taking our gold and mineral wealth back to developed economies by stealth and violence against Nigerians.
‘’Where one’s human right ends, the rights of another begin; most especially for self-protection. If we fight, they say ‘human rights,’ but we will now be aggressive and we will question motives. We will stop what is happening in our land. We require your effective collaboration,” the president said.
The Nigerian leader noted that the UN must transform from being one of the world’s foremost talk shops to discuss global issues into becoming the world’s foremost action coordination centre.
He said that a situation in which 70 per cent of the resources being devoted to the world’s poorest countries are being spent and sent back on overheads and administrative costs would defeat the purpose and objectives of the organisation where help is needed most.
“The poverty ravaging our continent and the question of security and counter-terrorism requires us to work in close and effective synergy.
“The world will ignore Nigeria at its own peril. If we engage in talk shops as real challenges wreak real havoc in real-time, we will fail.
‘’The time to strike is now. The time to achieve real results is now. I fought for democracy. I was detained for democracy. I am now President and I am determined to prove that democracy can provide the development that our nation and our continent so urgently demand.
“Trace those of us here to our foundations and you will find that we have ties and links with poverty. We must not be ashamed of that history, but poverty is unacceptable. I am one of the lucky survivors of gripping poverty.
‘’Nigeria is truly a giant. 240 million people and counting; with a massive youth population. We are done saying too much. We seek such action.
‘’We have arisen out of poverty as individuals, but until our people have arisen out of that, we will not rest, even if it requires decisions at home that make me temporarily unpopular,” he said.
Responding, Guterres said that the UN system was in the process of real reform that would address some of the institutional frailties and lack of decision-making power for the developing world, on whose behalf more than 75 per cent of UN resources are accrued.
“We now recognise the need to reform the institution to represent the world as it is today. The questions of debt and SDRs; the fact that middle-income countries have only marginal access to concessional funding.
‘’In the SDGs Summit, we believe we have a growing political consensus and now, a declaration, in this regard. We are pursuing this with great determination,” the UN Secretary-General said.
He assured Tinubu of the support of the UN system for ECOWAS in light of the series of military coups which have occurred in the West African sub-region in the past few months and years.
“Mr. President, we have high expectations for your presidency after the many bold steps you have taken. Nigeria is an indispensable voice in the sub-region.
‘’We will give you every support needed for your success to be achieved. Your success is Africa’s success and we wish you well,” the UN leader said.
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