As the world is faced with major transitions and challenges in terms of security, climate change, and food security, among others, parliamentarians as the elected representatives of the citizens find themselves center-stage in pushing for effective solutions. They need to be engaged at all levels. It is natural that this must include the United Nations where key decisions are being made. To make this possible, the creation of a United Nations Parliamentary Assembly is urgently needed.
Alhagie Mbow, Member of the National Assembly of the Gambia and the Pan-African Parliament, 2019
The increasing public problems related to climate change and the economic and political transformations of the 21st century demand more democracy. New worldwide problems demand new institutional solutions. The United Nations needs to recognize that being an exclusive club of governments and involving some representatives of civil society is not enough to connect citizens with the international decision-making system. The political pluralism of the world's societies is not represented at the United Nations. International political decisions have to be informed by all perspectives. Governments have their own self-serving interests and this is especially true for authoritarian and totalitarian regimes. The United Nations need to make a step forward in the quality of plural representation that makes minorities seen and heard. This is the main reason why it is necessary to support the creation of a United Nations Parliamentary Assembly.
Lilia Puig, Argentine democracy activist and politician of the Union Cívica Radical, currently Member of the Mercosur Parliament, 2019
As the world becoming one global village in this information era, the 75th anniversary of the UN is a good moment to revise its work and make institutional changes, in particular to establish a UN Parliamentary Assembly which can serve and represent the global citizens and address the global issues of terrorism and climate change, among others.
Lutfi Sheriff Mohamed, Member of the Somali Federal Parliament and the Pan-African Parliament, Chairman of the Banadiri Political Reformation Council, 2019
There is a cluster of existential risks confronting everyone now alive on the planet. Each of them involves a cataclysmic scenario for which we are not prepared. The reality is that no country in the world has the capacity to protect us from a planetary scale disaster. Multilateralism has failed. The retreat to unilateralism is ratcheting up the risks. Realistically the only hope for us all and future generations is a U.N. Parliamentary Assembly and global governance that set planetary integration into motion. The alternative is annihilation.
Denny Taylor, Professor Emeritus, Hofstra University, and Distinguished Alumni, Columbia University, 2019
National Governments and their Parliaments should be requested to endorse the call for a proposed UN Parliamentary Assembly (UNPA) so that citizens of the world can have a direct and legitimate voice at the UN.
Together 2030, Together 2030, a global civil society coalition, in a position paper published in June 2019
The establishment of a UN Parliamentary Assembly is an important proposal that I am delighted to support. To a great extent the UN Security Council is incapable of fulfilling its duty of maintaining international peace and security. The rise of the extreme right in some countries and the lack of diplomatic ability is undermining international collaboration. In this situation, a UN Parliamentary Assembly can help mobilize citizens and parliaments in support of the UN and help strengthen multilateralism and the international system.
Amre Moussa, Former Foreign Minister of Egypt and former Secretary-General of the Arab League, 2019
As the 75th anniversary of the UN is approaching in 2020, it is important to review the world organization's work and design. Just as the Pan-African Parliament is giving a voice to the continent's citizens, a UN Parliamentary Assembly should give a voice to "We, the Peoples" of this planet. I am convinced that this innovation will benefit the UN and global governance.
Stephen Masele, Member of Parliament from Tanzania and First Vice-President of the Pan-African Parliament, 2019
The United Nations matters to all people, everywhere. If we are to manage global catastrophic risks - from climate change to nuclear weapons - we desperately need an effective UN that is open and accountable to the people it serves. A UN Parliamentary Assembly would be a positive step in this direction. It would send a strong message about the need to involve stakeholders in the work of the UN, and help to boost the organisation’s legitimacy and efficacy. The UN was created for “we the peoples”. It is only right that people around the world are able to engage meaningfully with its work.
Natalie Samarasinghe, Executive Director of the United Nations Association in the UK, 2019
Parliamentarians should not only play a role in galvanizing intergovernmental action and in implementing global commitments nationally. Elected representatives should have a formal role to play in international negotiations and decision-making. The creation of a UN Parliamentary Assembly should be promoted as a key reform in order to achieve this goal and to increase the UN's democratic legitimacy. The UN cannot go on as an exclusive club of governments. Otherwise the world organization will not be able to advance much.
Florence Mutua, Member of the National Assembly of Kenya, 2019
In 2020, the UN will be 75 years old. This may be a good moment to analyse at a summit some institutional changes necessary to increase its legitimacy and effectiveness, such as the reform of the Security Council to make it more representative and limit the use of the vetoes of the great powers, or the establishment of a parliamentary assembly, thus strengthening the role of civil society and the democratic dimension of the multilateral system.
Josep Borrell, Foreign Minister of Spain and former President of the European Parliament, in the newspaper El País, December 2018
The escalating crisis in international cooperation shows that new ways must be found to combat global problems. The United Nations brings together diplomats appointed by member state governments. It is time for an additional body composed of democratically elected representatives: a UN Parliamentary Assembly.
Daniel Jositsch, Swiss Senator and Co-President of the Parliamentary Group for a UNPA, 2018