New York, 23 September 2022 (TDI): The Minister for International Relations and Cooperation of South Africa, Grace Naledi Mandisa Pandor, gave a statement in the 77th Session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) on 21 September.

Statement by South African Minister

Naledi Pandor said that the international community is facing various, immense yet interconnected challenges, which no country can resolve alone.

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The Minister also that the greatest challenges faced by South Africa are poverty, inequality, joblessness, and feeling excluded.

Pandor noted that States have grown apart in facing energy and food insecurity, climate change, conflict-induced destruction, and the existential threat of nuclear weapons.

She emphasized the need to develop and support Africa’s capacity for research and innovation in the development of vaccines, to make investments in public health systems that are improved, and to train thousands more qualified health professionals.

The Minister also underlined that South Africa established the first mRNA global technology transfer hubs that will contribute to the secure supply of life-saving medication for African countries and other developing countries.

Pandor suggested the implementation of cleaner, more accessible solutions and stressed that South Africa was working with partners to develop its transition plan to reduce emissions with regard to energy shortages.

She made it clear that it was intolerable that, 77 years after the UN was founded, five countries control a disproportionate amount of the organization’s overall decision-making, leading to calls for the General Assembly to be revived and the Security Council to be reformed.

She also referred to the struggle for self-determination in Western Sahara and demanded that the embargoes against Cuba and Zimbabwe be lifted.

South Africa in the UN

South Africa was one of the 51 founding members of the United Nations in 1945 but the United Nations General Assembly, on 12 November 1974, suspended South Africa from participating in its work, due to international opposition to the policy of apartheid.

South Africa was re-admitted to the United Nations in 1994 after its transition into a democratic state.