“Where there is unity there is hope for our future generations,” Hon. Fiame Naomi Mataafa
26 September 2021
The Prime Minister emphasized that united action is the best response to the greatest challenges of our time.
The General Debate of the United Nations General Assembly, traditionally the highest-profile United Nations (UN) event of the year, is taking place virtually for the second time in the organization’s 76 year history. Honourable Fiame Naomi Mataafa, addressed the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) for the first time as the Prime Minister of the Independent State of Samoa at its 76th Session on 25 September 2021, Samoa time. She joined the 193 leaders of the UN Member States in highlighting priority issues for consideration and urgent action by the global UN family. She also addressed the AOSIS Leaders’ Summit held within the margins of the UNGA on 23 September 2021.
The theme for this year’s Session is “Building Resilience through hope - to recover from Covid-19, rebuild sustainably, respond to the needs of the planet, respect the rights of people, and revitalize the United Nations.” The Prime Minister reaffirmed Samoa’s commitment to multilateralism and the UN as the pivotal forum to address all issues that transcend national boundaries.
In her address, the Prime Minister highlighted issues of priority concern for Samoa which include calls for ambitious emissions reductions to meet the 1.5 degrees Celsius promise of the Paris Agreement. She urged coordinated global action to assist with recovery from COVID19 and shared Samoa’s ongoing efforts to ensure the safety of the people of Samoa with the recent mass COVID19 vaccination drive. Other important issues highlighted included protecting the health of the ocean; confronting the scourge of marine and plastic pollution; building sustainable food systems; tackling NCDs; upholding human rights and safeguarding the rule of law. There was also the condemnation of international terrorism and use of weapons of mass destruction; preventing the use of ICT for criminal purposes, and stressing the importance of implementing the sustainable development goals and SAMOA Pathway. The Prime Minister also maintained the call for the reform of the UN to be fit for purpose and end a fragmented approach at the national level.