By Prudence Arobani
Nigeria welcomed the continued efforts of the UN to enhance its relationship and cooperation with the African Union and to support effective implementation of the 2063 Agenda.
Nigeria’s Ambassador and Permanent Representative to the UN, Prof. Tijjani Bande, made the remarks while delivering Nigeria’s message at the Security Council Open Debate on Peace and Security in Africa.
Bande said “we, therefore, need to redouble efforts to strengthen the strategic partnership between the United Nations and the African Union, both at the operational, political and tactical levels.
“This will enable us to address, in a holistic manner, the challenges faced in the fields of peace and security.
“In this regard, Nigeria welcomes the signing in April of the new landmark framework to strengthen the partnership between the United Nations and the AU on peace and security pillars”.
According to him, the framework will ensure a better response to the changing dimensions and evolving challenges of peace operations.
Bande pledged Nigeria’s support to the continued efforts to strengthen African peacekeeping capabilities and emphasise the importance of implementing the Joint UN-AU Framework for Enhanced Partnership in Peace and Security.
“We also recommend the enhancement of an effective partnership, in order to improve the planning, deployment and management of African peacekeeping operations.
“In this regard, we stress the importance of finding ways to secure predictable, adequate and sustained financial support to AU-led Peace Operations.
“This is to ensure that the missions deployed could effectively maximise their operational capabilities to the tasks at hand,” he said.
He noted that the option of a jointly developed and jointly funded budget would require additional work by the UN Secretariat and the AU Commission before it could be put into practice.
“Nigeria endorses the four options outlined by the Secretary-General and we call on the Security Council to endorse these options in principle.
“In addition to the issue of financing, we take note of the proposal in the Secretary-General’s report for a decision-making framework aimed at making the joint action more effective between the UN and the AU.’’
Bande, however, said if indeed the primary responsibility of the Security Council was to maintain international peace and security, its work in managing international peace and security should be viewed through the lens of preventive diplomacy.
The Nigerian envoy noted that “if the United Nations is able to assist African nations and communities in restoring their social and institutional fabric, we can reduce propensities for conflict. (NAN)