Jameson Bansais: Making the case for a stronger UN to tackle governmental corruption
Editor’s note: Jameson Bansais submitted his following personal story to Global Young Voices. You too can submit yours to us here.
In the summer of 2016, I went to Vietnam for two months and participated at a WFP internship. During their program, we were taken around by the WFP organization to understand what poverty looks like, and to help realize how together, we can find a prosperous solution to the common problem which is touching more and more people every year: Poverty. We all know that as time passes, there are more and more people living under one US dollar a day; around 10.7% of the world population nowadays. We discovered that while this percentage decreases, the number of people in poverty actually increases since the world population keeps growing up.
During this internship, what WFP highlighted was the corruption present at all stages of wealth distribution regarding the Vietnamese poverty problem. The other internship I participated in was from the same organization; the South Sudan branch under Itaru Furuta's authority. This time, the main objective of the internship was to engage in a new-born state and solicit the area by providing any help we could to reduce the corruption that exists between the people and their government. The main goal was to operate freely in a country where trust was hard to establish between the locals and ourselves. From those two short internships, I really felt the passion within many United Nations workers since I could see it was not easy to live in an unpredictable environment since they were already engaged in other life priorities including family and children. They worked with the understanding that the UN banner is not always a protection to violence in those regions. The main idea behind these practical ventures is to create a platform from which we can have more transparency between lending nations, lending organizations and borrowing nations to have a current and constant check on how money is being spent overall.
This can be achieved with a multinational organization that will have offices in every single country and state that has joined the UN, and this could be applied not only for the poverty field but to any of the SDGs. If the UN requires any nation to accept to host a UN branch within its borders, many difficulties in the organisation’s history could have been avoided. For example, having a permanent UN office in Iran would have avoided the waste of both time and money sending over nuclear experts in a place where everything was removed once the experts arrived. What I believe is that we should rely on individuals on every level more frequently than governments or private organizations since the more intermediaries in play, the more difficult the problem is to solve because of the number of people involved in the problem resolution. We should engage with that ideology to implement branches in every single sovereign state; it will be costly but it will remain cheaper than all the money wasted on corrupt governments. Doing this will give more value to what the UN means to those countries. Today, too many countries have joined the UN without sharing its universal values and instead continue to violate people's human rights. It is very important that we come up with a strong solution to all the SDGs, otherwise it will be a tremendous failure and we will all have to face this, eye to eye, recognizing that we did not give an appropriate answer to the problem. The UN should not support independence for a state if peace cannot be kept afterwards.
The United Nations is a place where open discussion can occur and it should also be a place where discussion can wrap on topics which have been in session for too long. Wars never end; they occur in different places. Today, and for tomorrow, it is possible to change, but change must take place from now on and continue until we reach a better society where true values are shared by every single human being on this planet.
Cover cartoon credit: Sergio Algeri/GYV