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Pacific countries urged to support Helen Clark’s candidacy for the UN Secretary General position

If the UNDP Administrator, Helen Clark gets the nod for the top United Nations job, she will be a great advocate to amplify the voices of small island developing states (SIDS) including the Pacific at the global level, according to the Pacific Community's director general, Dr Colin Tukuitonga.

Dr Tukuitonga made the supporting remarks at a joint media conference with journalists in Nuku’alofa Monday after Clark delivered the keynote address at the first high level Summit in Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs).

“We are so happy that she is able to come to Tonga. She has an impossible travel schedule but to be here shows to us her commitment to our region.

“We want to thank her and wish her well and hope that she is successful in her campaign, said Dr Tukuitonga.

Clark, the current administrator of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and former Prime Minister of New Zealand is one of the 11 candidates vying for UN Secretary General post to replace South Korean diplomat Ban Ki Moon who has held the post for nine years.

“I believe that Helen Clark offers the Pacific the best chance of furthering our voices at the global level. The issues of climate change and NCDs are global issues that will have a great impact on our region. We can’t just deal with within our region but we will need allies and supporters like Helen Clark at the highest level of decision making, said Dr Tukuitonga.

He’s urged Pacific Leaders to unite in supporting Clark’s candidacy. In her dialogue session with United Nations General Assembly and civil society, Clark advocated for the challenges facing Pacific SIDS especially climate change.

The President of the UN Security Council, Francoise Delattre of France has indicated that the Security Council will begin the process of consideration of candidacies by 21 July.

If Clark is appointed the new Secretary General, she will become the first woman to head the United Nations in its 71 year history.


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