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All eyes were fixed on the stage as the Minister of Education, Sports and the Creative Industries of Antigua and Barbuda, Daryll Matthew, stepped up to deliver his General Policy Speech at the 42nd General Conference of UNESCO.
The High-Level Segment was a highly anticipated event set to shape the organization’s future.
Matthew began his speech by emphasizing UNESCO’s crucial role in Antigua and Barbuda.
He highlighted how the organization has been instrumental in advancing the country’s priorities in education, tourism, and cultural preservation by helping establish policies and programs to support these areas.
He elaborated on the nation’s continued commitment to working with UNESCO to achieve their shared goals.
The Minister’s speech was compelling and informative, providing detailed insights into the country’s progress and achievements in various sectors.
Evidently, the speech was well-researched and carefully crafted to convey the country’s message effectively.
Overall, the Minister’s speech was a significant moment in the conference, setting the tone for the rest of the event.
Antigua and Barbuda has demonstrated an impressive level of commitment to the international stage, particularly with regards to UNESCO, over the past six months.
During the meeting, Minister Daryll Matthew highlighted two vital priorities for UNESCO.
Firstly, he emphasized the urgent need for protecting natural sites and oceans, pointing out their often overlooked role in mitigating the impacts of climate change.
Given Antigua and Barbuda’s immediate need to safeguard unshielded natural sites and enhance protection for existing ones, they urge the international community to act fast.
Secondly, Minister Matthew emphasized the necessity for increased support to small states, including Small Island Developing States (SIDS), and states with limited resources.
He stressed that equal participation and contribution to UNESCO’s initiatives should not be constrained by financial limitations, particularly given the cumbersome process of submitting heritage site applications and their extensive commitments.
Antigua and Barbuda also raised concerns about the potential politicization of debates within UNESCO.
The Minister urged that UNESCO remain focused on its core mandate, leaving political disputes to institutions within the United Nations system, such as the Security Council or the General Assembly.
UNESCO’s primary purpose, preserving and advancing cultural and natural heritage, should be at the forefront of its efforts, allowing it to concentrate its resources effectively.
In conclusion, Matthew remarked, “Let us ensure that our resources and focus are directed toward the very priorities that underpin UNESCO’s existence, thereby effecting meaningful improvements for the populations of our member states.”
Antigua and Barbuda’s efforts to promote peace and cooperation through UNESCO is a resounding call to action.
It emphasizes the organization’s crucial role in addressing global challenges and promoting sustainable living for all.