PR

PH Permanent Delegate to UNESCO and Ambassador to France Ma. Theresa P. Lazaro
during the 209th Session of the UNESCO Executive Board

02 July 2020, Paris –Permanent Delegate to UNESCO and Ambassador Ma. Theresa P. Lazaro delivered the Philippine national statement at the opening plenary of the 209th Session of the UNESCO Executive Board.

Ambassador Lazaro expressed the Philippines’ condolences to all victims of the COVID-19 pandemic and solidarity with Member States.

She noted that the crisis revealed the weaknesses of the international system and aggravated social tensions and inequalities. She highlighted that technical capabilities and internet connectivity had “become even greater barriers for developing countries to overcome” to promote the right to education for millions of students and their families.

She shared the Department of Education’s strategy of delivering “blended” educational materials, which use both ICT and traditional learning techniques. She urged UNESCO to address the digital divide.

She called on Member States to start engaging in constructive dialogue and cooperation with a view to ensuring the independence, impartiality and balance of UNESCO as an intergovernmental organization.

She emphasized the need for a comprehensive approach to reflect the diversity of opinions on issues such as freedom of expression, justice and the rule of law.
Ambassador Lazaro mentioned that the Philippines was doing its part to support UNESCO, by hosting expert meetings of the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) Western Pacific Sub-Commission and engaging in partnerships for local sustainable development in its Biosphere Reserves.

She concluded by stating: “It is time to overcome politicization and re-orient our vision and energy towards making real, measurable differences in people’s lives... Only by working together can we emerge from the COVID-19 crisis stronger and more resilient.” END.

Click here to read the Philippine statement_209th Session of UNESCO Executive Board