Back Africa’s Bid for Permanent Seats at UN Security Council – Tayebwa Asks China

The Deputy Speaker of Parliament, Thomas Tayebwa, has asked China to back Africa’s demand for two permanent representative seats at the United Nations Security Council.

Tayebwa made the call to the Chinese envoy, Luosang Jiangcun, the Deputy Chairman of the Standing Committee from the National People’s Congress of China during a meeting at Parliament on Thursday.

China, France, Russia, the United Kingdom, and the United States of America are the five permanent members that founded the UN Security Council in October 1945. Composed of 15 members, the Security Council is one of the six principal organs of the UN charged with ensuring global peace and security.

The Deputy Speaker stressed that the unrepresentative nature of the Council came into play during the Libyan conflict in 2011, where he observed that the UN Security Council approved the bombardment of the North African country without the input of Africa.

With ten non-permanent members elected for two-year terms by the General Assembly, the Security Council also recommends the admission of new UN members to the General Assembly and approves any changes to the UN Charter, an instrument of international law.

Tayebwa also implored the Chinese envoy to popularize Uganda’s investment profile back home in order to attract more Chinese tourists to visit Uganda and invest in the tourism sector. In January this year, CNN ranked Uganda among the top ten tourism destination countries in the world.

Despite not giving a direct answer to Tayebwa’s plea for support to Africa’s demand at the Security Council, the visiting Chinese envoy reiterated that China will continue to support Uganda as enshrined in the Co-operation MoU signed between the two countries in 2013.

The Chinese envoy is in the country for an official visit upon the invitation by the Government of Uganda. On Wednesday, the delegation met President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni at State House Entebbe.

It is important to note that when the UN was founded in 1945, only four African countries were part of this organization. Today, all 54 countries are member states of the UN.

Africa, whose membership at the UN is nearly 28 percent of the organization’s total membership plays no key role despite being central in the council’s work.

Of the 193 member states, China, France, Russia, the UK, and the USA are the only permanent members of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC), the organization’s highest decision-making body with more veto powers than the rest of all UN member states.

In 2005, the African Union – AU through the Ezulwini Consensus in Swaziland proposed reforms in the UN requiring that Africa be given two permanent seats with all the rights and privileges of permanent membership, including the veto, as well as five non-permanent seats which are yet to be implemented.

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