JIS News

Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Portia Simpson Miller on September 15, addressed her first Summit of the Non Aligned Movement (NAM) in Havana, Cuba. In her address, Mrs. Simpson Miller pointed out that poverty eradication was central to the social and economic development objectives of the member countries.
The Prime Minister said the NAM must ensure that the outcomes of major conferences and summits dealing with this subject, including the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), were implemented. “It is disturbing to note that the majority of developing countries that will fail to meet the MDG’s by the targeted date of 2015 are NAM member states. Poverty eradication cannot be achieved without firm commitment to realizing the advancement and empowerment of our women in the contribution to this agenda,” Mrs. Simpson Miller stated.
Citing some of the challenges faced by developing nations, Prime Minister Simpson Miller noted that these included; Unilateral action, Inequitable financial structures; Threats to global governance; Increasing pandemics – including HIV-AIDS; Environmental degradation resulting in global climate change; and marginalization of groups within developing societies including the youth, women, the disabled, the poor, oppressed and dispossessed.
The Movement she said must find new strategies, which would ensure positive results to the many challenges facing member countries. Mrs. Simpson Miller also emphasized that as the Movement celebrated its 45th anniversary, it must study the way it positioned itself in the decision making process as it relates to world.
“It is imperative that the NAM continues to examine its working methods and procedures. This will enhance the impact and influence of the movement within the wider international community. The NAM must continue to be participatory, democratic and representative of its broad membership. We therefore support the document on methodology which this summit will adopt and I am confident will strengthen and revitalize the movement,” the Prime Minister said.
Another issue which the she said should be addressed was that of international democracy. “Our members must be able to participate effectively, be they big or small weak or strong. All countries must have must have a voice in this our parliament of the south. We must identify priority issues that unite us,” the Prime Minister said.
Meanwhile, in a declaration on the purposes and principles and the role of the NAM in the present international environment, the Heads of State of the Movement expressed their firm conviction that they would continue to make progress towards the attainment of the goals and purposes outlined by the developing countries. “Our unity and solidarity is only relevant if the NAM continues to play an active, important and constructive role in international relations, so that a more just and equal world order may be achieved,” the Heads declared.
In addition, they recognized the special needs of the Least Developed Countries (LDCs), Small Island Developing States (SIDS), and the Landlocked Developing Countries (LLDCs), within a new global framework for transit transport cooperation for landlocked and transit developing countries.
The Heads also reaffirmed the need for continued support and assistance for their endeavours, particularly in their efforts to achieve the internationally agreed development goals, including those contained in the Millennium declaration and the Brussels Programme of Action for the 2001-2010 decade, the Mauritius Strategy for the further implementation of the Barbados Programme of Acton for the sustainable development of SIDS, and the Almaty Programme of Action.
They emphasized the need to continue to pay special attention to the situation of developing countries emerging from conflict, in particular LDCs, with a view to enabling them to rehabilitate and reconstruct, as appropriate, their political, social and economic infrastructures, and to assist them in achieving their development objectives.
The NAM comprises 118 countries representing the interests and priorities of developing states including all CARICOM member countries. Haiti and St. Kitts were admitted into membership of the NAM, following Dominica, Antigua and Barbuda which formalized their membership during the meeting of the NAM Foreign Ministers in Malaysia in May.