International IDEA Secretary-General Brings Democracy and Development into Focus at UN
International IDEA Secretary-General Yves Leterme is in New York 21-26 September for the opening of the 69thSession of the United Nations General Assembly. On 22 September International IDEA co-hosted the High Level Side-Event, “Good Governance, Democracy and the Rule of Law in the Post-2015 Sustainable Development Agenda,” with the Governments of Botswana and Norway.
Secretary-General Leterme discussed the importance and relevance of democratic governance and accountability to sustainable development, and particularly, how they can be incorporated into the post-2015 development agenda. In his remarks at the event, Leterme urged UN Member States to ensure that democracy, human rights and the rule of law are given a place in the post-2015 development framework. He also emphasized that there should be a particular focus on democratic accountability so that elected representatives can provide effective public services. International IDEA has a selection of tools for country-level use, which include The State of Democracy Assessment, and the Democratic Accountability in Service Delivery. Both well-crafted tools offer information about a citizen-led approach to accountability in the priority areas of health, education, and poverty eradication.
Later, the Secretary-General delivered a statement at the World Conference on Indigenous Peoples focused on the need for political institutions to be inclusive and responsive. "International IDEA is committed to promoting the participation and representation of indigenous peoples, especially those experiencing exclusion from political decision-making," stated the Secretary-General.
The Secretary-General also held a number of high-level bilateral meetings with representatives of Peru, Canada, India, Mongolia and the African Union.
International IDEA is a Permanent Observer to the UN and works actively on promoting democracy within the work of the UN.