South Africa on Tuesday called for a new vision to re-evaluate the current global structures in reducing inequality and poverty aggravated by the COVID-19 pandemic.
At this moment of re-imagining Mandela, the anti-apartheid icon and first black president in South Africa, “we should be re-emboldened to create a new vision, based on a moral and ethical foundation of our current international system,” said Naledi Pandor, Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, in a statement marking the Nelson Mandela Month which falls in July.
“It is in this spirit that we decided to initiate global dialogue around building a new social contract between nations in order to reduce inequality,” said the minister.
As this pandemic continues to wreak havoc across the world, it has begun to transform global consciousness by forcing large sections of the international community to re-think traditional approaches to fighting poverty, global inequality and underdevelopment, Pandor said.
It is indeed in the hands of the international community to make a difference by building meaningful and lasting partnerships for a developmental agenda that will enable the world to stand as one against global pandemics, poverty, inequality and injustice, said Pandor.
Failure or inadequacy to withstand the effects of this pandemic by countries in both the Global North and the Global South underscores the reality of global and national inequality as well as the need to re-evaluate current global social, economic and health structures which have been rendered very weak by the unrelenting waves of the pandemic, according to Pandor.
While both the developed and the developing worlds have suffered COVID-19’s dreadful effects, the developing world has unequally borne the brunt due to its fragile economies, weak institutions and in particular, inadequate public health systems, Pandor said.
“COVID-19 has shown us that while its impact is indiscriminate, resilience to withstand and mitigate its dire consequences hinge on developed public health systems, robust economic institutions as well as the state of social development which empowers citizens,” said Pandor.
She urged the international community to work towards the elimination of both national and global inequality, for the creation of a just global order as well as a humane world. Enditem