Minister Zola Skweyiya Elected President of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) Management of Social Transformation Programme, 19 October 2005

Minister Zola Skweyiya was today elected President of the UNESCO Management of Social Transformations Programme (MOST) Intergovernmental Committee, (IGC) in Paris, France. The Minister is in Paris attending the Extra-ordinary Session of the MOST IGC.

The election of Dr Skweyiya is a significant recognition of the contribution of the Minister and the country to the transformation and development of the social development field. The MOST IGC President is elected in his personal capacity as a renowned social scientist or social policymaker whose commitment to the MOST programmes has already been established through prior co-operation.

The committee said Dr Skweyiya has demonstrated his commitment to the MOST programme through a number of outstanding actions, including the following:

  • The convening of the Cape Town Ministerial Forum of Southern African Development Community (SADC) Ministers of Social Development in November 2004,
  • Chairing, on behalf of MOST, an informal gathering of Ministers of Social Development within the framework of the Copenhagen +10 Review process during the annual session of the UN Commission on Social Development at the United Nations in New York, 9 - 18 February 2005.
  • Active participation in meetings of the International Steering Committee of the MOST International Forum on the Social Science-Policy Nexus, to be held in Buenos Aires and Montevideo, 20-24 February 2006.
  • The convening of four workshops to be held in Buenos Aires during the International Forum.

The Ministry of Social Development is encouraging a wide range of South African institutions to identify, provide and fund international participants in each workshop. "I am humbled by the election to serve UNESCO in this capacity. It is yet another example of the high esteem with which our country is regarded in the world. I will do my best to serve the MOST IGC to the best of my ability, to contribute to the promotion of human rights and human dignity in the world," said Dr Skweyiya. He returns to South Africa on Friday.

Lakela Kaunda
Cell: 082 782 2575

Issued by: Ministry of Social Development
19 October 2005

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2003 Department of Foreign Affairs, Republic of South Africa