Sun | Dec 3, 2023

Mottley calls on youth to lead new world revolution

Published:Tuesday | September 20, 2022 | 12:08 AM


Barbados Prime Minister Mia Mottley is urging the children of the world to “lead the revolution” as well as hold their leaders responsible as the annual spotlight on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) got under way here on Monday.

The “SDG Moment is taking place as the world faces a deepening cost-of-living crisis that carries huge implications for the advancement of the SDGs, especially in developing countries.

Convened by the UN Secretary-General António Guterres, the Moment will provide world leaders with a platform to showcase the bold actions and solutions that are needed to set the world on course towards achieving the SDGs. The SDG Moment event is expected to build momentum heading towards the SDG Summit in 2023.

In her address to the event, Mottley, who is also co-chair of the SDG Advocates, said world leaders also need to ensure that the “environment in which we live, particularly in cities where people come in their millions, that those cities can provide life for them because their actions of living are sustainable”.

“You more than anyone else as children can lead the world in a waste-free world, in a world that recognises that if we take the plastics and if we take things that we use and just throw away, that they have to go somewhere.

“You the children can lead the revolution to changing our habits,and if you change those habits, then the to-do list of protecting the oceans and protecting life on land becomes a little easier, but we can’t do that unless we also tackle the climate crisis.”

She said that hose who will be on the front line must be those who expect to be living 50 years from now.

“My friends, if we can do all of that, and if we can ensure fairness by ensuring that we can end conflict and we can end corruption and we can tell the world that we don’t want only to talk about the ending of conflict in Ukraine, we want conflict ending in Tigray, we want conflict ending in Syria, we want conflict ending wherever it raises its head in the world. We want conflict ending when it appears under the guise of criminality, like it is in Haiti,” Mottley said.

“We want you, my friends, the children of this world to hold us, the governments, accountable and to recognise that we do have choice, and leaders can make decisions, and leaders are not constrained in the decisions that we make, and everything does not depend on financing, although it is absolutely critical,” she said as she went through the SDGs that in 2015, one hundred and ninety-five nations agreed with the United Nations that they can change the world for the better.