President of the Republic, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo is leading a Ghanaian delegation to the 78th United Nations General Assembly (UNGA 78), taking place at the UN headquarters in New York City, in the United States of America (USA).
The 78th UNGA will feature the High-Level General Debate from Tuesday 19 to Saturday 23 September and on Tuesday 26 September, under the theme, “Rebuilding trust and reigniting global solidarity: Accelerating action on the 2030 Agenda and its Sustainable Development Goals towards peace, prosperity, progress and sustainability for all”.
Focus on SDG’s
The 78th session represents a crucial milestone in the journey towards achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), since it marks the halfway point to the global goals’ deadline.
At the SDGs summit which will take place as part of the 78th UNGA, leaders including President Akufo-Addo, will review the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the 17 SDGs, providing high-level political guidance on transformative and accelerated actions. The outcome is expected to be a negotiated political declaration.
President Akufo-Addo will also deliver a statement to the Assembly on behalf of Ghana on Wednesday 20 September 2023. He is expected to use the occasion to point out steps his administration is taking to implement all the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the efforts aimed at economic recovery following the hard-hit Ghana’s economy took as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and the geopolitical war between Russia and Ukraine.
Global Africa Forum
On Thursday 21 September, the President will participate in the maiden edition of the Global Africa Forum,” on the sidelines of the 78th session of the United Nations (UN) General Assembly, organised by the Africa-America Institute (AAI), a premier U.S.-based international organization dedicated to strengthening human capacity of Africans in collaboration with the Africa Prosperity Network (APN), organisers of Africa Prosperity Dialogues (APD).
The maiden ” Global Africa Forum” a convening on mobilising Global Africa Investments, is being organised by APN in collaboration with AAI on the backdrop of the “Action Compact” from the 2023 Africa Prosperity Dialogues which was held in Ghana.
The compact identified mobilising alternative (domestic) funding as an action to pursue to enhance intra-African trade. The forum will therefore serve as a platform to identify the appropriate measure to channel Global Africa funds as an alternative source of financing for enhancing intra-African Trade.
President Akufo-Addo will also participate in the Ocean Panel Leaders Meeting, the High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development Under the Auspices of the General Assembly, the Climate Action Summit, a meeting on the SDGs in Second Half, Signing of the High Seas (BBNJ) Treaty by Ocean Panel Leaders among others.
Several bilateral meetings are also lined up as part of the President’s schedule. Among them are meeting with the US ambassador to the UN, Chair of the Open Society Foundation, Prime Minister of Barbados Mia Amor Molley, President of Slovenia Natasa Pirc Musar, among others.
The UN General Assembly (UNGA) is the main policy-making organ of the Organization. Comprising all Member States, it provides a unique forum for multilateral discussion of the full spectrum of international issues covered by the Charter of the United Nations. Each of the 193 Member States of the United Nations has an equal vote.
The UNGA also makes key decisions for the UN, including: appointing the Secretary-General on the recommendation of the Security Council, electing the non-permanent members of the Security Council and approving the UN budget.
The Assembly meets in regular sessions from September to December each year, and thereafter as required. It discusses specific issues through dedicated agenda items or sub-items, which lead to the adoption of resolutions.
Sitting arrangements in the General Assembly Hall change for each session. During the 78th Session (2023-2024), North Macedonia will occupy the first seat in the Hall, including in the Main Committees, followed by all the other countries, in English alphabetical order.
Key UNGA Focus Areas
During the 78th UNGA, several global issues are going to feature prominently during the general debate, side meetings and events. Among them are global financing systems to ensure the achievement of the SDGs by the year 2030.
At the heart of this is the $500 billion dollars stimulus proposal by the Secretary-General of the UN, António Guterres, to support developing countries to make sure they have the resources they need to achieve the SDGs.
Action on climate change will also attract attention during the UNGA. The UN would seek to get world leaders, countries, global businesses and business leaders as well as civil society groups to step us their efforts to reign in runaway climate change.
The world is moving towards 2.6 to 2.8 ˚C of global temperature by the end of the 21st century and it is the UN’s goal to find ways of getting the buy in of global leaders to work to limit the temperature increase to 1.5 ˚C above pre-industrial levels. With political will, the UN believes that the target is attainable but a lot of work needs to be done.
Pushing for peace in Ukraine will be a central objective of the 78th UNGA in line with the UN Charter and international law. However, as things stand in the war between Ukraine and Russia, the two countries are nowhere near negotiating for peace in Ukraine.