The United Nations has hinted that the world may not be able to meet the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030 due to the huge financial gap created by the coronavirus pandemic.
According to the Organisation, advanced countries that largely support the activities of the world body have had to redirect funds to deal with the ravaging effect of the coronavirus while less developed countries have their meagre resources and economies severely damaged.
The UN Resident Coordinator in Ghana, Charles Abani, announced this in Accra at the launch of the 75th anniversary of the organisation.
This year’s anniversary is focusing on how member countries and the UN can shape the future together.
The 17 sustainable development goals are a universal call to action to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure that all people enjoy peace and prosperity by 2030.
Since 2015 when it was adopted, countries had made strides to meet the set targets.
In Ghana, for instance, there has been a decline in the proportion of people living in poverty. Between 2013 and 2017 poverty had reduced from 13.6 per cent to 11.9 per cent on the international level while national poverty had been reduced from 24.2% to 23.4% during the same period.
Prevalence of stunting was 18% in 2017, down from 19% in 2014.
Maternal deaths have reduced from 358 per 100,000 live births (2015) to 310 (2017). However, due to the outbreak of coronavirus and subsequent lockdown of borders and economies, resources that were being channelled into these areas have been directed to dealing with the virus.
The UN Resident Coordinator for Ghana, Charles Abani called on countries to ensure that while building economies and restructuring efforts to meet the SDG’s, no one is left behind.
The Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, William Owuraku Aidoo said the UN’s 75th anniversary is a time of introspection of the ability of Organisation to respond to needs of member countries today.
He said international peace and security matters cannot be effectively addressed without the much-needed Security Council Reforms to reflect the geopolitical realities of our time.
He called for the reform of the UN Security Council to make it fit for purpose.
Mr Owuraku Aidoo said Ghana has played key roles in norm-setting, capacity-building and advocacy in human rights and respect for international law at the United Nations.
Under the Fourth Republic, Ghana has consistently ensured that respect for human rights, peace, democracy and the rule of law has always remained on top of its national agenda.
He said a dependable partner, Ghana have never shied away from assuming responsibilities within the comity of nations to support advancement on development goals.
To this end, the president in his capacity as co-chair of the SDGs Advocates is actively engaged in international facilitation for the implementation of the goals.
Activities for the week-long anniversary include a Model UN Assembly, Quiz competitions and media encounters which will be hosted by GBC’ Uniiq FM and GTV.