UN’s top communication official hails adoption of text on information work

14 May 2007

The senior United Nations communications official has hailed the adoption of a wide-ranging draft resolution by the world body’s Committee on Information as a “road map for the year ahead.”

Addressing the broad range of information services provided by the UN, the resolution notes that these should furnish comprehensive, objective and equitable information about the issues before the Organization and maintain editorial independence, impartiality and accuracy and full consistency with the resolutions of the General Assembly.

“The draft resolution that you now have adopted provides the Department for Public Information (DPI) with a clear and comprehensive roadmap for the year ahead,” Kiyo Akasaka, Under-Secretary-General for Communications and Public Information, told the concluding session of the Committee on Information on Friday.

The partnership between DPI and the Committee on Information is of primary importance, he said. “The whole world is our audience, but you are our mentors and our primary focus group – helping us gauge how we are doing, where we need to make changes and how to be more effective in our work,” Mr. Akasaka told the assembled delegates.

He cited the example of the interactive dialogue held on the opening day of this year’s session. “You not only spoke candidly about what we do and how we do it, but you also provided us with useful benchmarks and suggestions for progress,” he said.

Reporting on the results of a survey, he said some 40 per cent of respondents described the Department as either effective or very effective in raising awareness about the UN in their respective countries.

“But it is also of real interest to me as a newcomer to DPI to know that half of you still think that DPI is only ‘somewhat effective,’” he added. “The quick conclusion I draw from this is that it is essential for us to continue to improve the way we work at the country level.”

Mr. Akasaka, who took office in March following a long career on the international scene, said the Committee’s session had furnished lessons. “I will soon sit down with my senior managers to review your deliberations and to identify areas where you want us to refocus our efforts,” he said, pledging to work together to inform the world about the work accomplished by the UN.

 

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