The newly-launched United Nations Social Cohesion Program for Fiji is expected to promote peacebuilding and reconciliation in the country.
Prime Minister Hon. Sitiveni Rabuka launched the program this morning, conveying the government and the people of Fiji’s gratitude to the United Nations Secretary General H.E Antonio Guterres and the UN Resident Representative to Fiji Dirk Wagener for their support in making this initiative a reality.
“The UN Social Cohesion Programme for Fiji will support Government agencies and civil society organizations in promoting social cohesion. Under the program, Fiji government agencies and civil society organizations will work together to address key sources of tension in Fiji and promote dialogue and respect for human rights.”
The PM highlighted that the program aligns with the agenda of the People’s Coalition government in its efforts to build peace locally and also on the international stage.
“With this funding and close partnership between the Fiji Government and the United Nations, the project aims to strengthen connections, trust, and accountability, and ultimately, peace and reconciliation among the people of Fiji,” he added.
“The project will address key sources and potential triggers of tension in Fiji by promoting dialogue and respect for human rights. It will bring Fiji a step closer to achieving the Peace Pillar, under the United Nations Pacific Sustainable Development Cooperation Framework 2023 to 2027.
“I urge us all to continue to carry forth the spirit of collaboration and commitment that has characterized our gathering today.”
PM Rabuka, at the same time, reiterated his commitment to establishing a Truth and Reconciliation Commission to address the events of 1987, 2000, and 2006, saying, “It is now time to make peace at home, promoting social cohesion and addressing the pain and injustices of the past for a better future”.
He also reaffirmed his call for the establishment of a “Zone of Peace” in the region, expressing his hopes for a peaceful Pacific.
“Peacebuilding at home and on the global and regional stage is the key agenda for Fiji and priority of the government I lead.
“Let us remain steadfast in our efforts, knowing that together, we can build a future where conflict gives way to understanding, where division yields to unity, and where hope prevails over despair.”
This program is being implemented with the Government of Fiji and United Nations family – the United Nations Development Programme, UNWOMEN, and the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights as implementing partners for the project.
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