Summary: Plenary Session
Votes and Elections Results: Vote on Swedish Proposal To Change the Name of the Forum
||19 July 2002, 16:30-17:30 vk
Moderator(s):|| • Mr. Sébastien Ziegler, President of the World Civil Society Forum Steering Committee, Mandat International (MI)|
Presenters/ Participants:|| • Mr. Daniel Alexander, Institute for Integrated Rural Development (India) (IIRD)|
• Mr. Colin Archer, International Peace Bureau (IPB)
• Ms. Viola Krebs, Deputy Coordinator of the WCSF, International Conference Volunteers (ICV)
• Mr. Mamadou N'diaye, Office Africain pour le Développement et la Coopération (OFADEC)
• Mr. Rubén Ortiz, Asociación de Agroturismo y Ecoturismo Indígena
• Mr. Takehiko Uemura, Network Earth Village
• Mr. Rob Wheeler, Millennium People's Assembly Network (MPAN)
||Stephen J.Doggett (ICVolunteers)
||Vote, Proposal, Delegation, Name, Permanent structure
This session was the continuation of several sessions that had discussed
the continuation of the World Civil Society Forum. The Swedish delegation had
previously made a proposal to modify the title and purpose of the Forum. This
proposal was defeated. The result of the vote on the Swedish delegation’s proposal to entitle the next
Forum, was defeated on Friday evening.
Among other things the Swedish
delegation had proposed a new name for the Forum: ‘World Civil Society Forum For Strengthening And Democratising the UN system’.
They explained that they felt the current Forum lacked focus, democracy and purpose but that the proposed title change would help restore this somewhat.
Accompanying the title change the Swedish proposal also included the conditions that the
Forum seek to build regional and training conferences, in order to evolve the Forum and increase participation.
Ballot count: a great majority of the delegates voted in
favour of a permanent or continued Forum. A new Council with regional
representations was elected to continue this process.
The debate over the proposal was extremely lively and a great number of opinions were expressed. After almost one and a half hours of debate, time restrictions meant a decision had to be made and thus Chair Sébastian Ziegler called a halt to the debate despite the fact that many participants still wished to
Opinions both for and against the proposal were heard, with particularly strong objections to the proposal being raised by African and British members. Those in favour of the proposal included
representatives from India, Peru, Japan and Iraq. Much of the African dislike of the proposal was
due to the fact that it seemingly narrowed the focus too much. One Somali member said that the Swedish delegation had not really clarified their agenda or in modern terminology, the proposal was not ‘transparent’ enough.
Mr. C.Didi representing the Democratic Republic of Congo objected to the
sole UN focus, because he felt that the World Civil Society was more than just a division of the
UN. However there was a clear sense that the Forum needed to build a stronger
identity in the future.
Before the vote, Mr. Ziegler urged those for whom the vote would be contrary
to their wish, to take the result in a spirit of the evolution of the Forum.
The majority of the voters expressed their wish to see the Forum continue.
Both the Coordinating Council and the Steering Committee were going to meet to
further develop the future agenda of the Forum.
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