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FORUM-ASIA Joins the 1 for 7 Billion Campaign

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15 April 2015

Call to Action to Member States of the United Nations:

Support a better process for appointing the UN Secretary-General on 27 April



We are writing to ask for your support for a better process to appoint the UN Secretary-General at an important debate on 27 April at UN Headquarters.

In its 70th anniversary year, the UN will be the platform for far-reaching decisions on climate change and sustainable development, and for tackling innumerable humanitarian crises and obstacles to peace. More than ever, the UN needs a highly qualified, effective Secretary-General at its helm. It is essential that the General Assembly appoint a Secretary-General in 2016 who is capable of ensuring that these decisions – which will affect the lives of seven billion people – are successfully implemented.

Yet the current appointment process adopted by the General Assembly in 1946 is wholly unsuited to ensuring consideration of the best candidates for Secretary-General. It falls far short of modern recruitment practices and the UN’s own standards and ideals. Opaque and outdated, it risks damaging the performance and perception of the UN.

Excellencies, governments speaking on behalf of more than 2/3rds of the General Assembly expressed support for reform and improvements in the UNSG appointment process at the 1st meeting of the Ad Hoc Working Group on the Revitalization of the General Assembly on March 3, 2015. Only two member states—permanent members of the Security Council—spoke against reform.

The 1 for 7 Billion Campaign represents over 100 civil society organisations worldwide, with more than 40 million members in all UN regions. We believe the status quo is unacceptable and we are committed to advancing a set of realistic proposals to improve the appointment process, including:

–       The publication of formal nomination and selection criteria and a clear timetable

  • The opportunity for all UN Member States to hear from candidates, with civil society participation in accordance with General Assembly procedures
  • Consideration of the recommendation of two or more qualified women and men by the Security Council to the General Assembly
  • Consideration of a single, non-renewable 7 year term of appointment for the Secretary-General

None of these proposals require amendment of the UN Charter. Most enjoy widespread support from Member States, respected opinion leaders and civil society.

The forthcoming debate of the Ad Hoc Working Group on the Revitalization of the General Assembly on 27 April is a critical opportunity for Member States to support these proposals. We urge your government to call for a strong General Assembly resolution on a fair, open and inclusive process aimed at finding the best candidate.

The selection process should be worthy of the post itself: a process that allows for merit-based consideration, by all UN Member States, of the world’s most competent women and men. Your government’s support on 27 April, and throughout this year, will be crucial to ensuring that the world gets the Secretary-General it deserves.


Yours sincerely,


The 1 for 7 Billion Campaign


1 for 7 Billion Campaign Supporters


Amnesty International

African Women’s Development and Communication Network (FEMNET)

Citizens for Global Solutions Avaaz

Arab NGO Network for Development Association of World Citizens (AWC)


World Federation of United Nations Associations

  • United Nations Association – UK
  • (On behalf of over 100 UN Associations worldwide)

Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung – New York Parliamentarians for Global Action

World Federalist Movement – Institute for Global Policy

  • (On behalf of 26 national and associated member organizations)

Third World Network Forum-Asia

Equality Now Conectas Control Arms

Development Alternatives with Women for a New Era (DAWN)

Global Policy Forum International Peace Bureau

Global Partnership for the Prevention of Armed Conflict (GPPAC)

Women’s Environment and Development Organization (WEDO)

Zarga Organization for Rural Development Social Watch

Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom

Lawyers Committee on Nuclear Policy

Africa Disability Inclusive Society (ADIS)

Alignment for Dignity

Birches Group LLC

Campaign for Earth Federation

Child Rights International Network – CRIN

Committee for a Democratic U.N.



Future United Nations Development System Project (FUNDS)

Gender and Mine Action Programme Global Memo


Institute for Advocacy in Africa (IAA)

Center for Development of International Law

Youth Action for Development, YAD

Montreal Institute for Genocide and Human Rights Studies

NAWO – National Alliance of Women’s Organisations (UK)

Nuclear Age Peace Foundation

Global Justice Center

International Association for the Advancement of Innovative Approaches to Global Challenges (IAAI)

Oxford Islamic Information Centre

Changement Social Bénin (C S Bénin)

Rideau Institute on International Affairs

Women’s Institute for Freedom of the Press

Youth Partnership for Peace and Development (YPPD) Liberia


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