Ten reforms

A comprehensive reform of the selection process for future UN Secretaries-General should include all of the following:

  1. The position and qualifications should be advertised in all countries, with a call for nominations by Member States, parliaments and civil society organisations, and include a closing date for nominations.
  2. A formal list of selection criteria should be published by the UN; these criteria should stress that the best person should be chosen irrespective of his or her country of origin.
  3. A clear timetable for the selection process should be made public by the President of the General Assembly and President of the Security Council, no later than the start of the GA’s 70th session.
  4. A list of all the official candidates and their CVs should be published by the President of the GA at the end of the nomination phase and by the Security Council President when considering its list of preferred candidates.
  5. The President of the General Assembly and the President of the Security Council will be jointly responsible for regularly updating the UN membership and general public on the selection process once the full list of candidates has been announced.
  6. Each candidate should release a manifesto, which should include their policy priorities and a commitment to selecting senior UN officials on the basis of merit, irrespective of their country of origin.
  7. Once the names of all candidates have been announced, the General Assembly should organise a series of open sessions that will enable member states as well as the public and media to scrutinise candidates and their manifestos.
  8. The GA should insist that candidates do not make promises to individual countries on senior appointments, and member states should undertake not to seek such promises.
  9. The Security Council should be encouraged to present two or more candidates for the General Assembly to appoint as Secretary-General.
  10. The term of the Secretary-General should be limited to a single, non-renewable period of seven years.

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