March 20, 2008 – Ban Ki-moon welcomes Peacebuilding Commision’s work with Guinea-Bissau
UN News Centre - Noting the progress Guinea-Bissau is making in its efforts to bring about political and economic stabilization, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today welcomed the engagement of the United Nations Peacebuilding Commission (PBC) - which seeks to prevent countries emerging from war from sliding backwards - with the West African nation.
After the Security Council backed a request from the country's Government, last December Guinea-Bissau became the third country on the Commission's country-specific workload, joining Sierra Leone and Burundi.
In his latest report on the country, Mr. Ban said he was encouraged by the momentum that has been generated since Guinea-Bissau, which is seeking to rebuild after a brutal civil war, was added to the PBC's agenda.
He added that the Commission, established in 2006, will provide "valuable assistance in post-conflict reconstruction and the consolidation of peace."
Guinea-Bissau has made headway in implementing the reforms needed to bolster the country's economy and bring a durable peace, the Secretary-General observed. He commended the Government's launching of a security sector reform process, noting how it can assist its efforts to tackle drug trafficking.
Mr. Ban said that the country's upcoming legislative elections "will be a major benchmark for the state of democratic governance," calling on authorities to fix a poll date to boost confidence in the electoral process' credibility.
He called on the international community to provide resources and said that he directed the UN to continue providing the necessary technical support.
Last month, Maria Luiza R. Viotti - chair of the PBC's country-specific configuration on Guinea-Bissau and Permanent Representative of Brazil to the UN - said that the country was at a "turning point," adding that improvements were necessary in several areas, including security, fiscal management, combating drug trafficking, youth vocational training and election assistance.