News / Africa

    The 30th East African Model United Nations Opens in Kenya

    The 30th East African Model United Nations opens in Kenya's capital Tuesday.  The four-day conference brings together 900 teenagers from the region to simulate the United Nations' General Assembly, Security Council, and U.N. committees.  The youth represent U.N. member countries.

    Conference, models UN assembly

    Secretary-General of the East African Model United Nations, 16-year-old Shiro Wachira, told reporters in Nairobi that East African youth are vastly underrated. “Our conference is the proof that kids can do a lot, that they have so much potential.  If you just walk out and talk to a few [delegates] you would be amazed at the projects they are involved in," Wachira said. "There is a group of kids who have started a website promoting environmental awareness and social causes. The entire conference is led by a group of people, not one of them is 18 [years old].”

    She said that the theme of the East African Model United Nations, or EAMUN, is Promoting Cultural Diversity. “We wanted to have this to make delegates aware of the cultural differences that do exist between us but to embrace them and to appreciate them because they are areas of strength. Our strengths lie in our differences,” Wachira stated.

    Diverse attendees

    Some 900 young people from Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, Tanzania, DRC, Ethiopia, Malawi, and Sweden are in Nairobi this week attending the conference, which simulates sessions of the United Nations' General Assembly and Security Council, as well as the U.N. committees of Ecology and Environment, Economic, Health, Human Rights, Political, and Technology.

    Yvette Ankunda, a delegate from Uganda, is the ambassador of Haiti. “We learn about these countries - we research their problems and issues.  We also learn about other countries around the world.  And then we come up with resolutions to try to help with the solutions for that country,” she said.

    There is also a small group of students who are journalists covering the event.  They produce a daily newspaper reporting on deliberations that happened in each of the committees.

    Leadership building

    The conference’s aim is to build leadership among the region’s youth.  Coordinator Caroline Mithika explains. “[In] exposing them to all these different situations, we are giving them an opportunity to grow in their confidence, they are able to grow in their leadership skills, they are able to grow in the knowledge of what is going on in the world and come up with proposed solutions for the world,” she explained.

    For 16-year-old Sohee Hyung, EAMUN's deputy secretary-general, the conference gives the youth a chance to address the huge discrepancy between the regions’s rich and poor. “The rich kids do not understand the lives of the poor people.  They ride [in] their car, pass by the street kids -- it seems that they are ignorant of the suffering that they have," Hyung noted. "I think the EAMUN is an opportunity for them to come together, and it is an opportunity for us to show video clips or make a speech or even writing a resolution and showing what is going on around the world.”

    She urges current regional and world leaders to rule with integrity.

    “If they are listening right now, why would they be selfish when we are trying to be unselfish ourselves? Why are they giving us education, love one another, to care for one another and be the leaders for tomorrow, when they are not doing it themselves?  They need to be an example, because they are the leaders for today, and they are going to be the example for the leaders of tomorrow,” Hyung said.

    The conference concludes Friday.


    You May Like

    Top US General: Turkish Media Report ‘Absurd'

    General Dunford rejects ‘irresponsible' claims of coup involvement by former four-star Army General Campbell, who led NATO forces in Afghanistan before retiring earlier this year

    Video Saving Ethiopian Children Thought to Be Cursed

    'Omo Child' looks at efforts of one African man to stop killings of ‘mingi’ children

    Protests Over Western Troops Threaten Libyan 'Unity' Government

    Fears mount that Islamist foes of ‘unity' government plan to declare a revolutionaries' council in Tripoli

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    By the Numbers

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    London’s Financial Crown at Risk as Rivals Eye Brexit Opportunitiesi
    X
    VOA News
    July 25, 2016 5:09 PM
    By most measures, London rivals New York as the only true global financial center. But Britain’s vote to leave the European Union – so-called ‘Brexit’ – means the city could lose its right to sell services tariff-free across the bloc, risking its position as Europe’s financial headquarters. Already some banks have said they may shift operations to the mainland. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
    Video

    Video London’s Financial Crown at Risk as Rivals Eye Brexit Opportunities

    By most measures, London rivals New York as the only true global financial center. But Britain’s vote to leave the European Union – so-called ‘Brexit’ – means the city could lose its right to sell services tariff-free across the bloc, risking its position as Europe’s financial headquarters. Already some banks have said they may shift operations to the mainland. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
    Video

    Video Recycling Lifeline for Lebanon’s Last Glassblowers

    In a small Lebanese coastal town, one family is preserving a craft that stretches back millennia. The art of glass blowing was developed by Phoenicians in the region, and the Khalifehs say they are the only ones keeping the skill alive in Lebanon. But despite teaming up with an eco-entrepreneur and receiving an unexpected boost from the country’s recent trash crisis the future remains uncertain. John Owens reports from Sarafand.
    Video

    Video Migrants Continue to Risk Lives Crossing US Border from Mexico

    In his speech Thursday before the Republican National Convention, the party’s presidential candidate, Donald Trump, reiterated his proposal to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border if elected. Polls show a large percentage of Americans support better control of the nation's southwestern border, but as VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from the border town of Nogales in the Mexican state of Sonora, the situation faced by people trying to cross the border is already daunting.
    Video

    Video In State of Emergency, Turkey’s Erdogan Focuses on Spiritual Movement

    The state of emergency that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has declared is giving him even more power to expand a purge that has seen an estimated 60,000 people either arrested or suspended from their jobs. VOA Europe correspondent Luis Ramirez reports from Istanbul.
    Video

    Video Calm the Waters: US Doubles Down Diplomatic Efforts in ASEAN Meetings

    The United States is redoubling diplomatic efforts and looking to upcoming regional meetings to calm the waters after an international tribunal invalidated the legal basis of Beijing's extensive claims in the South China Sea. VOA State Department correspondent Nike Ching has the story.
    Video

    Video Four Brother Goats Arrive in Brooklyn on a Mission

    While it's unusual to see farm animals in cities, it's become familiar for residents of Brooklyn, New York, to see a little herd of goats. Unlike gas-powered mowing equipment, goats remove invasive weeds quietly and without adding more pollution to the air. As Faiza Elmasry tells us, this is a pilot program and if it proves to be successful, the goat gardener program will be extended to other areas of New York. Faith Lapidus narrates.
    Video

    Video Scientists in Poland Race to Save Honeybees

    Honeybees are in danger worldwide. Causes of what's known as colony collapse disorder range from pesticides and loss of habitat to infections. But scientists in Poland say they are on track to finding a cure for one of the diseases. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Wall Already Runs Along Parts of US-Mexico Border

    The Republican Party’s presidential nominee, Donald Trump, gained the support of many voters by saying he would build a wall to keep undocumented immigrants and drugs from coming across the border from Mexico. Critics have called his idea impractical and offensive to Mexico, while supporters say such a bold approach is needed to control the border. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from the border town of Nogales, Arizona.
    Video

    Video New HIV Tests Emphasize Rapid Results

    As the global fight against AIDS intensifies, activists have placed increasing importance on getting people to know their HIV status. Some companies are developing new HIV testing methods designed to be quick, easy and accurate. Thuso Khumalo looks at the latest methods, presented at the International AIDS conference in Durban, South Africa.
    Video

    Video African Youth with HIV Urge More Support

    HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, is the top killer of teens in sub-Saharan Africa. But many youths say their experience with the virus is unique and needs to be addressed differently than the adult epidemic. VOA South African Correspondent Anita Powell reports.
    Video

    Video Pop-Up Art Comes to Your Living Room, Backyard and Elsewhere

    Around the world, independent artists and musicians wrestle with a common problem: where to exhibit or perform? Traditional spaces such as museums and galleries are reserved for bigger names, and renting a space is not feasible for many. Enter ArtsUp, which connects artists with venue owners. Whether it’s a living room, restaurant, office or even a boat, pop-up events are bringing music and art to unexpected places. Tina Trinh has more.
    Video

    Video Scotland’s Booming Whisky Industry Fears Brexit Hangover

    After Britain’s vote to leave the European Union, Scotland’s government wants to break away from the United Kingdom – fearing the nation’s exports are at risk. Among the biggest of these is whisky. Henry Ridgwell reports on a time of turmoil for those involved in the ancient art of distilling Scotland’s most famous product.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora