ECFA participation in a webinar on the relationship between the United Nations and non-governmental organizations
On May 31, 2021, ECFA Director, Ambassador Dr. Ezzat Saad, participated in a webinar entitled “Cooperation between the United Nations and NGOs: Stories and Prospects”, inaugurated by the president of China NGO Network for International Exchanges (CNIE). The webinar consisted of two sessions.
In the context of the first session, in which ECFA’s intervention came, Ambassador Saad stressed that the relationship between civil society and human rights is one of the most organic relationships, and that the presence of an active civil society is a cornerstone in establishing constructive relations between the state and society, and a prerequisite for the work of a state that puts the citizen at the center of its attention and adopts development as its approach. In many cases, civil society NGOs draw attention to the related imbalances, and allow marginalized groups to express their opinion to achieve their demands.
Thus, NGOs represent an important contribution to achieving social cohesion and long-term stability within society. In return, human rights provide the necessary safe environment supportive for these organizations to perform their role. Therefore, NGOs are among the key institutions in which human rights issues occupy an important position, especially if the vision expands to include all rights, whether civil, political, economic, social or cultural.. etc.
In this context, and through the United Nations platform, the following can be done: Urging member states to formulate a legislative system that supports the work of civil society organizations within them, thus contributing primarily to the process of trust building between the state and civil society; The necessity of strengthening cooperation with the United Nations Department of Global Communication, and benefiting from its wide media channels with non-governmental organizations, as well as benefiting from advanced technological developments, in emphasizing and supporting human rights issues on a broader scope, and benefiting from the possibility of sharing human rights expertise and experiences among NGOs via the UN platform; Urging to ensure a rational and democratic management of civil society organizations through internal democracy, expanding the powers of the General Assembly in regulation and applying the principles of transparency and accountability.
It may be useful here to recall the regulations established by the United Nations Convention against Corruption, such as preventing conflicts of interest, establishing regulations for transparency in contractual relations between civil society organizations and donor organizations, as well as adequate regulations for internal auditing, which helps prevent acts of corruption and others; in addition to thinking about expanding the establishment of binding international mechanisms to ensure that human rights are not violated, as was done with the attempt to develop an international binding mechanism regarding the human right to development, in which the Egyptian Council for Foreign Affairs participated with a statement in 2019.