I have the ideas to make UNESCO more effective – Al-Kawari

A CANDIDATE for the Director-General’s position of the UNESCO, Dr Hamad Bin Abdulaziz Al-Kawari is fired up for the position as he has embarked on a globetrotting to convey his message of revitalising the world body to member states.

He has so far visited 40 countries in Africa, Asia, Europe and the USA.

He said UNESCO was facing financial crisis and when given the nod, “I have such ideas as to how to turn the organisation around.”

Dr Al-Kawari, currently the Advisor to the Emir of Qatar, was speaking to the Daily Graphic during his recent visit to Ghana when he outlined his vision for seeking the nod as the Director-General of the UNESCO.He was in the country to confer with President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo to seek Ghana’s support for his bid to become the next Director-General of the UNESCO.Innovation solutionDr Al-Kawari, a former Minister of Culture, who is in the race with four other contenders, says he is not just out to seek the support from countries, but to also listen to them.He made it clear that he would not be an armed chair DG, saying, “you cannot sit in your office as we do often and send letters to the heads of states.”

Dr Al-Kawari explained that the challenges of the UNESCO needed a creative and innovative solution, stating that he had certain ideas and stressed that the challenges of UNESCO were not beyond solutions.

Visibility of UNESCO

He identified one of his top priorities as making the organisation more visible, recalling what he described as embarrassing when he was asked in a press conference by a journalist where the headquarters of the UNESCO was located.

“I think one of my main jobs is to reintroduce UNESCO because UNESCO needs every country and every country needs UNESCO,” Dr Al-Kawari said and expressed the conviction that when the organisation was well introduced to individuals and the corporate world, they would support it.

“Dynamic communication regarding UNESCO’s infinite potential is a prerequisite to the solidarity required for any financial mobilization.

“It is of the utmost importance for UNESCO’s initiatives to be better recognized and appreciated by the younger generation, large corporations, charities and philanthropic associations and the like.

“This improved visibility applied to all of our activities will allow for more immersive interactivity, will attract more of these entities and will encourage fundraising,” Dr Al-Kawari said.

He explained that with the lofty aims and objectives of the organisation, he was sure that the corporate world and the international community would consider the call for support of the organisation a worthy course.

Objectives of UNESCO

The main objective of UNESCO is to contribute to peace and security in the world by promoting collaboration among nations through education, science, culture and communication in order to further universal respect for justice, for the rule of law, and for the human rights and fundamental freedoms which are affirmed for the peoples of the world, without distinction of race, sex, language or religion, by the Charter of the United Nations.

Experience

Touting his experiences as a successful diplomat, accomplished politician and a business tycoon, he said, he knew how to deal with “such complex situations.”

Dr Al-Kawari said he believed that he had served his country, the international community and was, therefore, not seeking for the top UN job for monetary consideration, “but when given the opportunity, I will consider it an honour to serve humanity.”

He said if given the job, he was not going to start from the scratch because he had already laid a solid foundation during his diplomatic stint, having to meet with presidents and other high profile individuals and the corporate world.

His aim, according to him was to be remembered that he had contributed to humanity.

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