Caretaker Federal Minister for Education and Professional Training Madad Ali Sindhi on Wednesday reiterated Pakistan’s commitment to SDG-4 (Education) as it was the corner stone to progress, and a guiding light towards a more prosperous society.
Presenting Pakistan’s perspective at 42nd Session of UNESCO General Conference and High Level Ministerial Dialogue on Education for Peace, he said Pakistan was working diligently to ensure that every child, regardless of socio economic background, has access to quality education.
The minister highlighted Pakistan’s active participation in the revision process of the 1974 Recommendations where in collaboration with the member states, proposals where framed aimed at advancing the debate on a more equitable and universal education system that was better adopted to meet the requirements of the modern world.
Ambassador of Pakistan to France and Permanent Delegate to UNESCO Asim Iftikhar Ahmad, Dr. Tanvir Kiyani, Secretary General Pakistan National Commission for UNESCO and other officers also attended the Session at UNESCO Headquarters Paris, a press release said.
He also briefed that Pakistan was working with multiple partners including UNESCO for the preservation of its cultural heritage.
Pakistan, he said, had a treasure trove ranging from food related items such as Sohan Halwa to Ajrak a traditional garment worn in Sindh to folk music that it would like to inscribe as intangible cultural heritage in addition to three items already inscribed.
The minister said that promotion of cultural diversity was essential to achieve SDG-11 (Sustainable Cities and Communities).
While addressing the session, he also stressed upon the urgent need to address climate change which has become a global challenge and is now affecting developing countries including Pakistan.
The minister said that more than ever before Pakistan remained fully committed to SDG-13 (Climate Action) and was working on safe guarding its green spaces. The inscription of two additional Biosphere Reserves (i) Chitral Bashkar Garam Chashma and (ii) Gallies demonstrated Pakistan’s seriousness to preserve environment.
The education minister further said that in the pursuit of development goals, it was imperative to work together and forge partnerships at the regional and international levels for provision of finance, technological expertise and capacity building.
“It is with this intent of global cooperation that Pakistan strongly supports the SIDS Operational Strategy and Global Priority Africa under the auspices of UNESCO,” he added.
The minister also called for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza and reaffirmed Pakistan’s full support for the Palestinian people for their right to self-determination and sovereign and independent State of Palestine on the basis of pre-1967 border and Al-Quds Al-Sharif as its capital.
He said that they all were seeing lives perished and future destroyed under the smoke of missiles and bombs.
“Silence over such crimes is only reflective of the double standards that have sadly become the biggest threat to multilateralism and respect for international law, as they erode the world’s belief in these systems and organizations,” he observed.
The minister further said that in these turbulent times their collective efforts should be to build a more peaceful, better educated, more developed and prosperous world.
By Mian Saeed Ahmed Khan