- Published on Tuesday, 05 February 2013 06:40
- Written by The News
British Prime Minister David Cameron has told a high level panel in Monrovia that leaders of the world should be held to account for failures to deliver on poverty reduction.
He said it is very important that leaders and politicians are held to account in the future for things that “we say need to change.”
Mr. Cameron made the statement during a UN development conference in Monrovia.
He co-chairs the meeting with President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and the Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono at the high-level United Nations meeting on ways to renew the fight against global poverty after 2015.
The high-level panel was set up by UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon in July 2012 when he appointed 27 members to advise him on a development agenda beyond 2015, the deadline for the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).
“They got the world to focus; they held world leaders to account. It is a very important task to be asked to lead the work about what should replace them, how we update them after 2015,” Mr. Cameron noted.
The eight anti-poverty goals outlined in 2000 aimed at combating poverty, hunger, disease, illiteracy, environmental degradation and discrimination against women.
While certain countries have achieved the goals set down, many - particularly those in sub-Saharan Africa - have made little progress in meeting these development needs.
But Mr. Cameron praised the MDGs as a “brilliant innovation”. “They got the world to focus on really important things, tackling issues of poverty, making sure children went to school, tackling hunger, making sure all have proper access to sanitation, tackling killer diseases,” he said.
The panel includes leaders from civil society, private sector and government from across the globe that will carry out wide consultations on the future of poverty eradication and present a report in May 2013.
Liberia has made important strides in rebuilding from a devastating civil war which ended a decade ago, but remains one of the world's most underdeveloped nations.
“This is a country that was completely ravaged by a conflict, war, crimes and guns. Its economy was destroyed, and now it is recovering under the leadership of the president,” Cameron said.
“It is a country that shows that aid can make a difference. It is a country that shows the real agenda of how you lift people from poverty to prosperity,” he added, saying there was a “real focus on eradicating poverty”.
Cameron said tackling poverty in the future requires looking at its true causes, which he said, were not just about money, but “ending conflicts, making sure there is no corruption, making sure that people have access to justice, making sure that there is rule of law, these are the central building blocks to move a country from poverty to prosperity”.