NEW YORK, DECEMBER 3 – “I am no miracle-maker. There are no miracles but teamwork can help us to achieve our goals”. On his first day in office, United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres called for a common effort, telling staff at the world body’s New York Headquarters that it is not enough to the “do the right thing, we need to earn the right to do the right thing.”
Mr. Guterres, who on his first day at the UN joined Twitter, called on the entire Organization for a collective effort to address the shortcomings and underlined the need to reform the UN development system, as well as address bureaucratic constraints that hamper its performance, saying the world body must try and get rid of its “bureaucratic straight jacket.”
In his remarks, the UN chief also recalled the selection process that culminated with the UN General Assembly appointing him as the ninth chief of the global body in October last year.
“I know that the way this selection process has been developed has raised a lot of expectations. I think it is useful to say that there are no miracles, and I am sure I am not a miracle-maker. And the only way for us to be able to achieve our goals is to really work together as a team”.
Mr. Guterres’ first day at UN Headquarters as Secretary General began with the laying of a wreath at the Memorial Wall in the Visitors’ Lobby. He will serve for a five-year period until 31 December 2021. He was Prime Minister of Portugal from 1995 to 2002, and the UN High Commissioner for Refugees from June 2005 to December 2015. He succeeds Ban Ki-moon who served as the Secretary-General from 2007 until 31 December 2016.
To read the full speech, click here.