The United Nations Information Centre (UNIC) in Windhoek says the United Nations in Namibia have budgeted N$64 million to be used in response to the Covid-19 pandemic, and the UN still maintain their ongoing mandate to address the country’s challenges of poverty, unemployment, economic inequality and other social ills.
This was said by UNIC’s National Information Officer Ms Anthea Basson in response to several questions sent to her by Omutumwa.
Omutumwa had sent the following questions to Basson:
Would you kindly provide an answer to the following questions?
1) I believe there are as many as ten United Nations agencies in Windhoek, all having a uniquely different mandate. A decade ago when Namibia was classified as an upper middle income country a lot of international stakeholders withdrew or cut down on their operations in the country. As a result even the presence of the UN agencies in Windhoek became invisible. But I would like to find out, what now is the role being performed by these agencies?
What is the use of having the UN agencies in Windhoek any more if there is nothing they are doing? What purpose does it serve for the agencies to keep their offices open while there is nothing being done in those offices?
1) The Namibian society is wrecked by poverty, unemployment, economic inequality and other social ills. Namibia’s civil society is dead, and the media have become a shell of their former selves as a result of lack of support from other stakeholders so that they are no longer doing anything meaningful. Are the UN agencies mere spectators?
In response Basson said the following:
Thank you for your questions; the UN System is grateful for the opportunity to engage with you.
- The UN System in Namibia comprise of various programmes, funds and agencies, resident and Non-Resident, who have a specialized mandate and focus area. Despite the different mandates the UN System, through the United Nations Partnership Framework (UNPAF) 2019 – 2023, works together to achieve targeted and strategic results which are aligned to the National Development Plan (NDP5). The UN System in Namibia works on the foundation of partnership, and is working on the four pillars of the UNPAF:
UN Agencies collaborate with partners and the Government of Namibia to implement various programmes and policies and does not operate alone. Partnership is the foundation of leveraging funding and resources to create impact and measured results for Namibia.
- The UN has reprogrammed USD 3’725’530.00 (N$64 million) funding toward the COVID-19 National Response Plan, and still maintains its ongoing mandate to address for example poverty, unemployment, economic inequality and other social ills. Namibia’s development challenges are all interconnected in nature, and the UN is operating from a holistic position to address the country’s development challenges. The UN is actively engaged with communities and civil society and the media to address and recalibrate to build back better.
Indeed, the UN is always working hand in hand with Government to address Namibia’s development challenges. We invite you to also scan the UN Namibia’s website at namibia.un.org, and also some of the agencies twitter accounts and Facebook accounts and webpages. Indeed the UN’s impacts are felt and more is being done.
IN THE PHOTO: The UN House in Windhoek’s Klein Windhoek suburb.