United Nations to stand by Guinea-Bissau in 2012 but calls on citizens commitment

16 Dec 2011

United Nations to stand by Guinea-Bissau in 2012 but calls on citizens commitment

14 December 2011 - United Nations top officials in Guinea-Bissau today ensured the organization's continuing support to the country's peacebuilding and development challenges in 2012 but calls on Bissau-Guineans to address together these challenges.


"I want to assure you that the United Nations stands ready to continue supporting the government and the people of Guinea-Bissau in their efforts towards peace, stability and development", the Special Representative of the Secretary-General and Head of the UN Integrated Peacebuilding Office in Guinea-Bissau (UNIOGBIS), Joseph Mutaboba told the press in Bissau.

His Deputy and UN Resident Coordinator, Gana Fofang, stated that "in 2012 the UN remains committed to assisting the country in mobilizing the necessary human capital and financial resources for the implementation of the reforms and priorities".

In joint press conference, Mutaboba informed that "the planned visit to Guinea-Bissau in 2012 by Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon will represent the highest signal of the UN's commitment to Guinea-Bissau" as UNIOGBIS is starting a new mandate of one year, until December 2012. According to the Secretary-General' report, "UNIOGBIS will continue to work in close cooperation with national authorities and with the other international partners of Guinea-Bissau, with a particular focus on accelerating the implementation of the reforms in the defense, security and justice sectors, strengthening the rule of law and human rights, and fighting drug trafficking, organized crime and impunity, as well as promoting national dialogue."

SRSG Mutaboba stated that UNIOGBIS and all UN staff in the country are ready to embrace this new challenge and help Guinea-Bissau to attain long-term stability and development as he calls on Bissau-Guineans to work together. "No progress will be achieved without the genuine commitment of Bissau-Guinean people and leaders towards addressing together the challenges the country will face next year. 2012 will be very critical for Guinea-Bissau with respect to national dialogue and political stability, security, rule of law and human rights."

Guinea-Bissau 2012 challenges include the National Conference on the way to peace consolidation and development, scheduled for mid-January, the constitutional review, the improvement of the security environment, with the civilian leadership asserting its constitutional authority and oversight over defense and security institutions as well as combat against impunity as well as drug trafficking and organized crime that represent a threat for the country and the sub-region.

The UN officials recalled the agencies, funds and offices contribution to the peacebuilding efforts in 2011, especially the Peacebuilding Fund (PBF) $3m contribution to Security Sector Reform (SSR), national dialogue and youth and women's employment areas, and pointed out some sectors to be supported next year. "Although a lot remains to be achieved, the UN family is very proud of its assistance to the Government and the people of Guinea-Bissau. 2012 will be marked by the implementation of the second National Poverty Reduction Strategy Paper (DENARP II 2011-2015), formally endorsed by the Government in July. We will consolidate efforts to raise the funds needed for the implementation of the DENARP II", Fofang added.

The DSRSG and UN Resident Coordinator also commended the people of Guinea-Bissau for the adoption of the law against Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) as he reminded UN support to national partners for the promotion of gender equality, namely the development of the draft law against Domestic Violence, the National Action Plan against Sexual and Gender Based Violence and the National Gender Equality Policy (PNIEG) all expected to be adopted in 2012.