Duterte assails UN, says Security Council violates tenets of democracy and transparency

Published September 22, 2021, 9:04 AM

by Ellson Quismorio

Suffice it to say that President Duterte spoke his mind about the United Nations (UN) during his final opportunity to address the world body as Philippine leader.

The United Nations headquarters building is pictured though a window with the UN logo in the foreground in the Manhattan borough of New York August 15, 2014. (REUTERS/Carlo Allegri)

Speaking via a taped message before the High-Level General Debate of the 76th Session of the UN General Assembly (UNGA) on Wednesday morning, Sept. 22, Duterte called the UN “inadequate” in the face of current global challenges.

“We face multiple crises that demand effective global governance. Yet our institutions, including the United Nations, have proven to be inadequate,” he said.

Duterte–whose bloody war against illegal drugs is set to be investigated the UN-backed International Criminal Court (ICC)–futher described the UN as “a product of an era long past” that “no longer reflects the poltical and economic realities of the world”.

Specifically, the 76-year-old President assailed the UN Security Council for its supposed failure to conform to democracy and transparency.

President Rodrigo Duterte delivers his speech before the UNGA on Wednesday, Sept 22, 2021 (Screenshot from Facebook live)

“Democracy and transparency are concepts that reverberate in the halls of the UN, but ironically, the Security Council–the pinnacle of UN structure–violates every tenet of these values,” he said.

“It is neither democratic nor transparent in its presentation and processes. Many member-states have spoken firmly, and we agree. This simply is not right,” Duterte further said.

Duterte ended his 15-minute speech by suggesting that the UN “reform itself”.

“If the UN is to lead the world in the many crises we face, things need to change. The UN must empower itself by reforming itself. Therein lies the hope of humanity,” he said.

Palace officials have said that the administration won’t cooperate with the ICC on its probe on the drug war since the Hague-based court supposedly has no jurisdiction on the matter.

Duterte will end his six-year term as Philippine president on June 30, 2022. Wednesday was his second time speaking before the UN.