Welcome remarks by the UN Resident Coordinator, Mr. Musinga T. Bandora at the 2013 Namibia Model United Nations High School Conference

21 Jun 2013

Topic:  “How information and communication technologies (ICT’S) can be used to provide sustainable development to the least development countries.”

Director of Ceremonies, Ms. Anthea Basson
The Honorable Minister for Education, Dr. David Namwandi

Mr. Stanley Shinapinda, the Chief Executive Officer of the Communication Regulatory Authority of Namibia

Mr. Keith Handura, the Finance and Administration Manager of MTN

Colleagues Heads of Agencies and others from the UN family
Teachers, parents and learners participating in the 2013 Model United Nations High School Conference

Members of the press, ladies and gentlemen

On behalf of the United Nations System in Namibia, I wish to welcome you all to the UN House and to the 2013 Namibia Model United Nations High School Conference. I am particularly grateful that the Honorable Minister of Education has agreed to set aside time from his very busy schedule to come and open this Model UN conference. This is testimony to your commitment, Honorable Minister to the promotion of learning of Namibia’s young people. We commend you for the good work you are doing. We thank you.

UNIC Windhoek is proud to be hosting the 2nd Model UN program in Namibia. This is a wonderful opportunity for high school students to gain insight into the deliberations and decision making processes of the General Assembly which is one of the principal organs of the United Nations.

Since its establishment, the model United Nations students and teachers alike have benefited from and enjoyed the interactive learning experience it provides. Model UN promotes student and teacher interest in international relations and develops the capacity for students to engage in problem solving. In addition, it gives the learners the opportunity to take part in the study and discussion of global issues and encourages the development of skills useful throughout their lives, such as research, writing, public speaking, consensus building, conflict resolution, compromise and cooperation. Model UN is as much as opportunity for learning as it is to meet new people and make new friends.

Over the next two days, you participants will discuss how information and communication technologies (ICT’S) can be used to provide sustainable development to the least developed countries.”  Namibia is not a least developed country but it has similar development challenges. For Namibia and other developing countries to meet the needs of their people-whether in education, in health, finance, agriculture, and other sectors- they will have to elaborate and implement integrated strategies and programmes to harness the applications of ICT for development. Your challenge for the next two days is to assume the role of the countries you represent and deliberate and propose how such  strategies can be developed, what elements they could embody and what kind of programmes will be required ensure that ICT is not only a contributor  to but a driver of sustainable development.  Most crucially for the Model UN, you will have to discuss how this can be done within the framework of global collaboration.

Ladies and gentlemen

Running an effective mentoring program such as Model United Nations Namibia involves expenses and requires commitment. On behalf of the UN, I would like to thank the Ministry of Education, the Communication Regularity Authority of Namibia (CRAN), and M.T.N Business for your interest in partnering with us to make this conference a success. Through your sponsorship, the United Nations Information Centre (UNIC) was able to bring together today 150 high school learners from Khomas, Hardap and Oshikoto regions to take part. I want to thank you for all the facilities you have placed at the disposal of the learners.

I cannot emphasize enough the importance of collaboration. Acting together we can achieve more and in so doing make an impact in the lives of youth such as the learners gathered here today.  We look forward to continued and increased support and collaboration in the years ahead.

To all the delegates gathered here today, well done for taking the first step in becoming global citizens. Good luck and make the best of it.