Statement by UN Resident Coordinator at UN Day Commemorations

Statement by Resident Coordinator of the UN System,

Mr. Alvaro Rodriguez - 73rd UN Anniversary


  • Hon. Kassim Majaliwa Majaliwa, Prime Minister of the United Republic of Tanzania.
  • Hon. Dr. Damas Ndumbaro (MP), Deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs and East African Cooperation,
  • Leadership of Tanzania Defense Forces
  • H.E. Amb. Dr. Ahmada El Babaoui Fakih, Chief of Diplomatic Corps and Ambassador of Comoro
  • Hon. Ministers, Deputy Ministers,
  • Permanent Secretaries,
  • Excellencies Ambassadors, High Commissioners and Heads of International Organizations and of Development Cooperation,
  • UN Colleagues,
  • Religious Leaders,
  • Civil Society Representatives,
  • Members of the Press,
  • Youth and Students,
  • Chairpersons of the UN Association (UNA) and Youth of the United Nations Association (YUNA),
  • Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen,




Habari za Asubuhi! Asalam Aleikhum and a very good morning!


Napenda kuchukua fursa hii kwa niaba ya familia ya Umoja wa Mataifa nchini, kuwashukuru wote mlioweza kufika hapa leo hii kuadhimisha miaka sabini na tatu toka kuanzishwa kwa Umoja wa Mataifa. Nichukue fursa hii ya kipekee kabisa kukushukuru sana Mheshimiwa Waziri Mkuu Kassim Majaliwa Majaliwa kwa kukubali kuhudhuria katika sherehe hii ya leo. Sisi wana UN tunasema Asante Sana! Niwashukuru wote mliofanikisha shughuli hii kwa namna moja au nyingine wakiongozwa na Wizara ya Mambo ya Nje na Ushirikiano wa Afrika Mashariki.


On behalf of the UN Country Team, I feel honoured and privileged to be addressing all of you here today as we celebrate the 73rd anniversary of the establishment of the United Nations. 73 years ago, a small group of 51 members states came out of the horrors of the second world war and joined together to promote peace and development. Since then, that number has grown to over 193 member states.   UN Day marks the anniversary of the entry into force of the UN Charter.


Today, as we do every year, we renew the long-standing collaboration between the Government and people of Tanzania, development partners and UN. By marking this day jointly, we are re-enforcing the partnership and strengthening the commitment for successful implementation of the United Nations Development Assistance Plan II, the Second National Five-Year Development Plan and the 17 Sustainable Development Goals.


We also take this opportunity to thank the Government of the United Republic of Tanzania for continuing to receive and host refugees from neighbouring countries. We understand the challenges this presents to the country and deeply appreciate its commitment to international humanitarian law.


Hon. Prime Minister,


Allow me to extend greetings from the Secretary General to Tanzania. And  allow me to read the Secretary General’s message for this year’s UN Day.


“United Nations Day marks the birthday of our founding Charter – the landmark document that embodies the hopes, dreams and aspirations of ‘we the peoples’. Every day, the women and men of the United Nations work to give practical meaning to that Charter. 


Despite the odds and the obstacles, we never give up.  Extreme poverty is being reduced but we see inequality growing.


Yet we don’t give up because we know by reducing inequality we increase hope and opportunity and peace around the world. Climate change is moving faster than we are, but we don’t give up because we know that climate action is the only path. 


Human rights are being violated in so many places.  But we don’t give up because we know respect for human rights and human dignity is a basic condition for peace.


Conflicts are multiplying - people are suffering. But we don’t give up because we know every man, woman and child deserves a life of peace.


On United Nations Day, let us reaffirm our commitment.  To repair broken trust. To heal our planet.


To leave no one behind. To uphold dignity for one and all, as united nations.



Hon. Prime Minister,

I would like to highlight four main points

  • Results being achieved by UN Agencies in Tanzania
  • Youth Empowerment
  • UN Reforms
  • Our partnership with the government of the United Republic of Tanzania


In Tanzania, UNDAP II is the 5-year business plan for the United Nations from mid-2016 to mid-2021. The plan is guided by the concept of leaving no one behind, the UN mandate of promoting the realization of human rights and national priorities of Tanzania.  The plan has four inter-related, mutually dependent themes: whereby Inclusive Growth requires a Healthy Nation, which is Resilient to shocks within the context of transparent and accountable Governance, Human Rights and Gender. These thematic areas aim at realizing the National Vision of people-centered and human-rights based development. It addresses core priorities of the Five Year National Development Plan and Mkuza III.


We are now more than two years into UNDAP II and we are beginning to see the impact that UN agencies are having. Mheshimiwa Waziri Mkuu, allow me to provide just a few of many examples of results being achieved by UN agencies in partnership with the government.


(1)     In Singida and Mara regions, we’ve piloted a home-grown school meals programme for 40 schools which provided meals to about 28,000 primary school students. The pilot has ended, but the meals continue to be made by the communities and is managed by local government authorities.


(2)     In the first year of UNDAP II, UN agencies supported 30,000 women to be screened for cervical cancer which is the number-one cancer killer of women. Over half of the cases were treated.


(3)     In response to the humanitarian crisis brought about by the tragic Kagera Earthquake, the UN provided School Water Sanitation and Hygiene facilities to 17 schools hosting over 10,000 students. We also distributed soap, water purifications tablets to 54,000 wananchi in Kagera.


(4)     We have also provided sustainable and more efficient energy solutions to about 20,000 households nationwide.


(5) We have launched the Kigoma Joint Programme which consists of 16 UN agencies supporting host Tanzanian communities.


(6)     UN agencies played an important role in the formulation of the National Plan of Action to End Violence Against Women and Children and we are currently working closely with the government and other stakeholders to implement the plan.


(7) We have supported the Prime Minister’s Office to develop and begin implementation of the National Apprenticeship Guidelines which are expected to prepare skilled young Tanzanians for the labour market.

(8) Katika kipindi cha mwaka wa kwanza wa UNDAP II, Umoja wa Mataifa umeweza kusaidia zaidi ya waathirika wa ukimwi laki mbili na nusu (250,000) kuandikishwa kupata antiretroviral treatment (ART).


(9)     Umoja wa Mataifa umesaidia utoaji wa huduma ya maji salama na usafi katika mashule arobaini na tisa (49) yenye jumla ya wanafunzi ishirini na sita elfu na hamsini (26,050) - wengi wa wanafunzi hao wakiwa ni wasichana.


Again, these are just some of the many ways in which UN agencies are contributing to implementation of the SDGs and to national development priorities. I would like to thank the government for their support in implementation of UN activities at the national and sub-national level.


I would also like to thank all of our development partners, without whom these activities would not be possible. Lastly, I would like to thank heads and representatives of UN agencies and all UN staff who work tirelessly to provide humanitarian and development support to Tanzania. As the Secretary-General says “we don’t give up”.


My second point is on youth empowerment. We know that youth make up over 60 per cent of the population. This year’s theme is Youth Empowerment and Innovation for Achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals precisely because of the reality that we need to create an enabling environment for them if we are to achieve the SDGs. This means equipping young Tanzanians with the skills, knowledge and confidence they need to play an active role in finding sustainable and innovative solutions to the SDGs in their communities.


Since the launch of the SDGs three years ago, we have reached out to youth all over the country and over 1,000 of them have become champions of the Global SDG Agenda. We have also reached over 10 million more youth in 25 regions through partnerships with the media. The idea was to get youth to take ownership of the SDGs and I think we have been successful in doing this – many of the youth you see here today are ambassadors in the SDGs and are excited to be part of achieving the goals.


It is my hope that when youth see the United Nations flag, they feel reassured that we are working with and also for them to achieve the SDGs. UN agencies are conducting various activities to empower youth.

We showcased and rewarded three youth innovators at our booth at this year’s SabaSaba trade festival. Agencies have also held various competitions where youth have been rewarded for having innovative business ideas. We have also supported youth to gain employment opportunities through apprenticeship programmes, vocational training and other approaches.


At the global level, the UN Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres has recently launched the UN Youth Strategy. The UN Youth Strategy aims to scale up global, regional and national actions to meet young people’s needs, realize their rights and tap their possibilities as agents of change. The strategy aims to ensure engagement of youth in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development as well as other relevant global, regional and national agendas and frameworks such as FYDP II and the AU’s Agenda 2063. In line with this year’s theme and the launching of the strategy, the UN in Tanzania will continue working closely with the government to empower youth in Tanzania, Africa and the world.


My third point is on the ongoing reforms within the UN System. UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres is currently in the process of repositioning the UN Development System to make it more fit for purpose to support implementation of Agenda 2030 and the Sustainable Development Goals. Last week I attended a meeting with the Secretary-General and all Resident Coordinator’s worldwide. Among others, the reforms include an independent, impartial and empowered Resident Coordinator System; a new generation of UN Country Teams that is more tailored to national development needs and priorities of specific countries; and a more expanded and coherent regional presence, especially at the policy level.


Finally, Mwisho, ningependa kuzungumzia uhusiano wetu wa kikazi na Serikali ya Tanzania. Umoja wa Mataifa, pamoja na Serikali, tunafanya kila jitihada, ili kuwafikia watu wengi, na kufikisha ujumbe, wa Umoja wa Mataifa na Malengo ya Maendeleo Endelevu, kwa wananchi wote.

Mkataba wa kuanzishwa kwa Umoja wa Mataifa unaanza na maneno “SISI WATU”; “WE THE PEOPLE” na Umoja wa Mataifa,  kwa kushirikiana na Serikali,  tumewafikia watanzania wengi wenye uhitaji; wengi wao wakiwa ni watoto, wanawake, na vijana. Na bado tunaendelea kuifikia jamii, ili kuweza kufikia malengo ya maendeleo yao binafsi, na kwa nchi.


In concluding, and on behalf of the United Nations, I wish to thank the United Republic of Tanzania for its continued support and close partnership with the United Nations system globally and in the country. Indeed, we call all women, men and youth, all governments to respect the principles of the United Nations Charter as well as the development and the humanitarian objectives we are pursuing jointly in Tanzania.

In this time of great change, it is when we most need to be clear on our common vision of peaceful, stable and prosperous Tanzania where every citizen can reach his or her full potential. We also thank our key development partners, including donor countries. It is through your support that the UN remains a close and relevant partner to Tanzania. At the end, our success or failure will depend on our partnership with all of you.


Tumechagua, Tumepanga, na Tunatekeleza!


Asanteni Sana!