Jørgen Estrups tale ved Post-2015 konferencen

26-02-2015

On behalf of the Danish UNA allow me just a few words in order to close this dialogue on the prospects for 2015 – this most important year – and the time beyond.

The road from vision to transformation is always a bumpy one: Is the vision sufficiently clear and is it met with general consent? Do we command the necessary means for realization? Will the political support and resolve suffice? In short: How can we possibly make the process of implementation succeed?

Preparations for this process of implementation have been spectacular. From the Rio+20 outcome document: ‘The Future We Want’ in 2012, through high level expert panels and UN summits till, last summer: ‘The Proposal for Sustainable Development Goals’ of the Open Working Group and lately the synthesis report of the SG: ‘The Road to Dignity by 2030’.

Let me start by making a couple of observations from our dialogue about the challenges of post-2015 implementation today:

Firstly, it is now clear from the intervention of the minister that there is no intention of re-opening discussions of the SDG goals and targets and this will become the Danish position. I think this is a relief to many of us, fearing that important goals could be lost in the process; but still 17 goals and 169 targets is ‘a hard sell’ as the minister put it, needing special skills of communication.

Further, this underlines the need for strong ‘governance’ as emphasized by some in the audience, but I also want to stress – on behalf of the Danish UNA and of Danish civil society in general, I think – the need of forming strong partnerships if implantation shall succeed.

Preparations for the post-2015 process have already lasted for about 3 years and efforts have been spectacular. What makes this process so special is, however, its nature of a concerted action, unfolded mutually by the UN system, member states and civil society. And this global mobilization includes not only organized civil society, but civil society as such, drawing on all available media platforms, in particular the social media. Realizing, what could aptly be called the ‘the global village hall’ in search of ‘the future we want’.

For the first time in UN history the process of decision making is not just government driven. In the spirit of the preamble of the UN Charter, its initial words: ‘We the Peoples’ are gaining substantial significance. It’s the UN of the Peoples and what could be more apt than making the ordinary global citizen partner in the fundamental challenges and choices of the next 15 years – partner in deciding: ‘the future we want’.

In the Danish UNA we see this as a unique possibility. Formally speaking governments will decide and commit themselves on the new goals for sustainable development. But in real life decisions are made by the daily acts and choices of ordinary citizens. Whether or not we will successfully meet the challenge of implementation for the SDG’s depends essentially on building lasting partnership with the global citizen.

I recall that Ban Ki-Moon did convey exactly the same message, when 1½ year ago in Central Park, New York he addressed an audience of 50.000 people gathered, campaigning for ending extreme poverty by 2030 and he started by saying: ‘Always remember that UN starts with ‘U’!’

So, it is for the Peoples of the Planet to decide what kind of future they want for present and next generations. We should all make sure they have the power of decision needed. 

Finally, to end on a Danish note I would like to remind us all of the words earlier today by Mr. Magdy Martinez-Soliman, asking for Denmark always to remain ‘a good global actor’. This will be something to remember in the coming months, when we face a parliamentary election.

Thank you very much.

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