Today, Member States reached consensus on a series of actions that will make the UN more accountable, more efficient and more transparent. Some of these actions include improvements to the UN’s oversight and procurement systems; establishing a Chief Information Technology Officer; replacing the UN’s long-outdated Information Management system; and approving internationally accepted accounting standards for the organization.
This follows a series of significant reforms since last September’s World Summit at the UN, including the creation of an Ethics office, the instatement of a strong whistleblower protection policy, strengthened oversight and management practices, and the creation of several new bodies that will strengthen the UN’s capacity to respond to human rights violations, conflict and humanitarian disasters.
Because of the action that has occurred over the past week—the adoption of new reforms and the lifting of a cap that had been placed on the UN’s budget—the critical work of the UN will continue and be strengthened. For that, all nations should be grateful. The efforts of the United Nations – from Iraq to Darfur to nuclear non-proliferation – are particularly invaluable to our interests in the United States. The recent agreement by the United Nations to lead the International Compact for Iraq, at the request of the U.S. and Iraqi governments, is just one example of how the UN supports efforts for peace and stability around the globe. There are many other similar examples of UN leadership in helping post-conflict countries rebuild and create democracies.
The UN’s tremendous value as a platform for peace and progress is as clear as it has ever been. It is critical that the UN continue to receive full funding from Member States in order to sustain these important initiatives. Threats by some in the U.S. Congress to withhold funds hurt U.S. interests and dilute the UN’s focus on key efforts – including the reform process.
The UN Foundation will continue to support reform that will make the UN the more flexible, efficient, and accountable organization that it must be to handle the challenges of the 21st Century. We hope that all member states recognize how important it will be to work together in the coming months to make that happen and to ensure that the UN has the financial support that its member states have agreed to provide.