1 for 7 Billion priorities

The 1 for 7 Billion campaign has set out its top priorities for strengthening the selection process as the the race to appoint the next UN Secretary-General approaches its conclusion.

The UN Security Council is carrying out a series of 'straw polls' in a bid to narrow the pool of candidates. It is crucial that the Council builds on the unprecedented degree of transparency and inclusivity that has marked the selection process so far, and that the General Assembly acts to enhance the new Secretary-General's capacity to provide leadership of the highest calibre, assisted by the best possible team. 

1 for 7 Billion's current priorities are as follows:

  • Best candidate - the Security Council  to recommend and the General Assembly to appoint the best possible candidate: a strong, independent and courageous Secretary-General with the charisma and vision to lead the UN and stand up for the principles of the UN Charter. The appointment must be solely based on merit with gender and geographical balance being considered if there are equally qualified candidates.
  • Single term - appointing the Secretary-General for a single, longer, non renewable term of office, to strengthen her or his independence. Read 1 for 7 Billion's policy paper on appointing the next UN leader for a single term. The proposal is backed by previous Secretaries-General and the Elders and is attracting growing support among member states. View 1 for 7 Billion's chart comparing country positions on the proposal for the Secretary-General to serve a single term.
  • Multiple candidates - the Security Council to recommend multiple candidates for the General Assembly to choose from, as a majority of member states have requested, which would provide for more democratic elections.
  • Senior appointments solely on merit - the new Secretary-General to have the freedom to appoint a top leadership team and make other UN appointments comprised only of the highest qualified candidates, ensuring equal distribution based on gender and geographical balance.That means making appointments that are solely based on merit. View our paper on ending the practice of a monopoly on senior posts by nationals of a state or group of states, exercised by powerful states seeking promises from candidates in exchange for support. The practice contravenes the UN Charter. 
  • Transparency in the selection - the General Assembly and its President having provided an unprecedented degree of transparency to the selection process through open meetings with all candidates and all states, the Security Council to act in the spirit of transparency by providing prompt information about the outcome of straw polls and formal voting, publishing the names of candidates going forward.