Statement by H.E. Ambassador ISHIKANE Kimihiro, Permanent Representative of Japan to the United Nations, Peacebuilding Commission (PBC) Ambassadorial-level Meeting on the Socio-economic Impact of COVID-19 in Burkina Faso
(As delivered)Merci Monsieur le Président,
Je suis très impressionné et encouragé par la politique dirigée par le Premier ministre et menée par les personnels du Burkina Faso par laquelle ils participent avec la détermination pour faire face aux difficultés dans lesquelles se trouvent le peuple et le Gouvernement burkinabés.
But still Japan is concerned about the humanitarian situation in Burkina Faso, especially the increasing number of internally displaced persons mainly due to terrorist attacks. We are also concerned about the economic difficulties that the people of Burkina Faso are undergoing, especially the negative impacts upon women and girls mainly due to COVID-19. We also express our heartfelt sympathies to those who have suffered from severe floods in recent months across the Sahel region, including in Burkina Faso. We commend all efforts to respond to immediate humanitarian needs and to contain the COVID-19 pandemic. This year alone, Japan has already provided a total of 9.8 million USD for emergency humanitarian grant aid to Burkina Faso, including for the COVID-19 response. Japan stands by the people and government of Burkina Faso.
Security is of paramount importance to the people of Burkina Faso. Japan commends the efforts of the Government of Burkina Faso for prioritizing security sector reform and the rule of law. There is no one-size-fits-all approach applicable to the whole country. The best institutional arrangement for each region and locality needs to be explored through close consultation and coordination among security actors and local residents. The goal should be to establish effective and accountable institutional arrangements. This is how people can have equal access to the basic services they need.
Presidential and parliamentary elections to be held on November 22 will mark an important milestone towards the country’s stability. Their successful implementation will be essential to gaining people’s trust in the State, and to reassuring international and regional partners, who are awaiting to provide further assistance and investment. All political leaders and other key stakeholders must join hands to create an enabling environment so that people can vote without security concerns.
To tailor these efforts to local contexts, Japan welcomes the rollout of the UN integrated hubs to five regions in Burkina Faso under the leadership of the Resident Coordinator. Japan also commends the important role of the Peacebuilding Fund in integrating the activities of UN entities and other actors as well as in catalyzing additional funding.
Through its New Approach for Peace and Stability in Africa (NAPSA), launched during the TICAD7 last year, Japan assists institutional capacity in African countries. In Burkina Faso, Japan has supported UNDP’s vocational training program for the vulnerable populations including youth, women, and internally displaced persons. The overall aim is to ensure human security and strengthen local resilience in coordination with local authorities.
Let me conclude by reiterating Japan’s commitment to continued support, including through the role in the PBC, for peace and stability in Burkina Faso.
I thank you.