|Prime Minister Shaikh Khalifa Bin Salman Al Khalifa presents UN-HABITAT Executive Director, Mrs. Anna Tibaijuka with the Bahrain Medal of Honour (phoso source: unhabitat.org accessed by wavuti.com 25th September 2016)|
New York, Sep. 25 (BNA): Arab and foreign political personalities and diplomats have highlighted the significance of the "His Royal Highness Prince Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa Award for Sustainable Development" that has been granted to Anna Kajumulo Tibaijuka, the former Minister of Lands, Housing and Human Settlements, Tanzania, former UN- Under Secretary-General of the United Nations and Former Executive Director, UN-Habitat and Director – General of the United Nations Office in Nairobi.
The award was presented during a grand ceremony held at the UN Headquarters on the sidelines of the 71st UN General Assembly (UNGA) session.
In their statements, they emphasized that the award reflected the extent to which the leadership of the Kingdom of Bahrain supported the efforts of the international community on sustainable development, and motivated people and institutions who offered noble service to humanity.
They particularly praised the initiatives of His Royal Highness Prince Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa, the Prime Minister, in support of sustainable development actions, both locally and regionally, as well as his vision in this area. They also praised the standards of developments in Bahrain in various sectors under the wise leadership.
Administrator of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Helen Clark hailed, as she attended the ceremony, the award as a wonderful event, saying that Bahrain had the right to be proud of its accomplishments in achieving the Millennium Development Goals, and of its transition to achieve sustainable development goals.
Tanzania’s Foreign Affairs and East African Cooperation Minister, Augustine Mahiga expressed his thanks and appreciation to the government of Bahrain led by HRH Prince Khalifa for organsing the award ceremony to honour Anna Kajumulo Tibaijuka in recognition of her role and contributions to achieving urban and sustainable development. He said that Bahrain and Tanzania had convergent views on the significance of the UN-Habitat and the efforts of Anna Kajumulo Tibaijuka for years to promote its goals, adding that the occasion was a special opportunity to strengthen relations between the two countries and to boost their shared interests. He also lauded the development status of Bahrain as one of the countries that had embraced a successful model for sustainable development, saying that it is a pearl among Arab countries.
Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) Secretary-General Abdullatif bin Rashid Al Zayani expressed appreciation to HRH Prince Khalifa for the prestigious initiative of His Highness Award for Sustainable Development through which Bahrain sent a message to the international community about the high interest in the objectives set by the United Nations. He said that Bahrain, thanks to the leadership of HM King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa and the direct supervision and follow-up of HRH Prince Khalifa and HRH Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa, the Crown Prince, Deputy Supreme Commander and First Deputy Prime Minister, was able to achieve the Millennium Development Goals well ahead of the 2015 target.
"Bahrain has been able to excel in the field of human development, which has always been among the things that concerned HRH the Prime Minister," Al Zayani said, adding that "HRH the Prime Minister as a leader and with such ideas and initiatives presents us his vision for the future." He added that HRH the Prime Minister has highlighted his own personal as well as Bahrain’s deep interest in achieving the 2030 sustainable development goals through the award, noting that the choice of Professor "Anna Tibaijuka" for the award was commendable and demonstrated that the prestigious recognition was for all and encouraged everyone to continue to contribute to the achievement of sustainable development goals.
HRH Princess Basma bint Saud bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, expressed sincere thanks and appreciation for Bahrain's leadership, government and people for the celebration, which coincided with the celebration of Saudi Arabia's National Day.
"We are proud there is an award with such a great significance in New York," she said, stressing that HRH the Prime Minister Award for Sustainable Development was on behalf of the Arab nation and not only Bahrain because "we are all one family." HRH Princess Basma lauded the objective of the award to stimulate continuous and lasting humanitarian and development field work.
Abdullah bin Yahya Al Moallami, Permanent Representative of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to the United Nations, expressed his delight to attend the award ceremony, stressing that sustainable development is a core concern for all countries. He said that the sustainable development goals for 2030 were approved last year in New York, and the keenness of the Kingdom of Bahrain on sustainable development and on bestowing an award in this area reflected the Kingdom’s attention to the issue and its positive contributions.
"Saudi Arabia shares Bahrain’s attention to the issue and hails the initiative of HRH the Prime Minister in launching the award," he said, wishing Bahrain and its leaders and people further successes.
Dr. Riyad Mansour, Ambassador of the State of Palestine to the United Nations, said that His Royal Highness Prince Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa Award for Sustainable Development represents a dignified deed from His Highness towards the United Nations in general and to Ms. Anna Taajuka in particular. He stressed that the award reflects the understanding of Bahrain's leadership, government and people of the importance of the United Nations and its specialized agencies and of their great service to humanity, expressing his admiration and gratitude to HRH the Prime Minister for the award, describing it as "one more his numerous special gestures."
Dr. Thani Al Zeyoudi, Minister of Climate Change and Environment in the United Arab Emirates, said: "We are proud that the Kingdom of Bahrain is leading the celebrations at the United Nations in the field of sustainable development." He added that Bahrain was one of the first countries to honour international leaders in this area, noting that His Royal Highness Prince Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa Award for Sustainable Development was a pioneering initiative with a significant impact on the world.
Shaikh Khalid bin Ahmed Al Khalifa, Bahrain’s Foreign Minister, said that Professor Anna Kajumulo Tibaijuka was bestowed the award in recognition of her contributions to the service of humanity and the fight against poverty in the world. He added that Tibaijuka visited Bahrain and appreciated the achievements of the Kingdom and its government led by HRH the Prime Minister in various fields in the service of the people and submitted her reports. The minister added that she fully deserved the award.
Housing Minister Basem bin Yagoob Al Hamer said he was delighted to attend the award ceremony, saying that the recognition received great international attention "because its goals encourage initiatives by people and institutions to promote sustainable development." He added that he highlighted in his speech during the award ceremony the contributions of the Government of Bahrain in the field of sustainable development, noting that Bahrain, under the leadership of HRH the Prime Minister has achieved many of the goals of sustainable development under the Bahrain Economic Vision 2030, adding there was great attention from the Prime Minister to the field of sustainable development at the local and international levels.
"His Royal Highness Prince Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa Award for Sustainable Development has become a landmark within the international community," he added as he congratulated Professor Tibaijuka on the distinction.
Professor Tibaijuka said she was grateful for the "His Royal Highness Prince Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa Award for Sustainable Development", saying that she was thankful to HRH the Prime Minister for his constant support to her throughout her tenure at the UN. She pointed out that she worked for seven year at the UN-Habitat and never expected that someone would recall her and bestow an award on her. She commended Bahrain's major achievements in sustainable development that were accomplished thanks to his HRH Prince Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa and his wisdom and forward-looking vision for the future, noting what he has achieved successes for the people of Bahrain in the area of sustainable development. She affirmed that the award gave a special significance to the efforts of her team in order to achieve the goals of sustainable development and presented an incentive to all people for further efforts and more work in order to achieve human solidarity.
Dr oksomait, a senior sustainable development consultant and the former regional director of African affairs at the UN-Habitat said that the His Royal Highness Prince Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa Award for Sustainable Development reflected the major commitment by Bahrain and its people in the field of sustainable development. "It is also a strong indication of Bahrain’s pledge and commitment to implement sustainable development," she added.
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BNA 1637 GMT 2016/09/25