Banking risk manager Nature Mogotsi represented Botswana at the Arab Youth International Model United Nations (AYIMUN) Conference in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
The conference was held from 27 to 30 May 2022. AYIMUN is a recognised United Nations conference which aims to empower youth and foster dialogue on key issues around the world. It serves as an opportunity for youth to present on an international platform, thereby enabling the voice of young people to be heard and support them in playing a role in addressing pertinent issues of global concern.
Mogotsi presented to the UN General Assembly on behalf of the Botswana delegation. The General Assembly is the deliberative organ in the United Nations where issues of global concern are deliberated and solutions identified to tackle such issues. Speaking on the Russia-Ukraine conflict, Mogotsi highlighted to the UNGA that “we cannot dispute the debilitating effects of the Russia-Ukraine crisis. However, it is important to also be forward looking in terms of our approach to address the issue, to limit the recurrence of war around the world at large”.
“As is, sanctions are in place, and the more efforts are made against Russia, the more the rest of the world suffers, particularly developing countries like Botswana who are experiencing a spike in commodity prices of basic commodities like fuel and food.” Furthermore, in presenting the working paper as a General Speaker of the Assembly on behalf of the Botswana delegation, Mogotsi pleaded with the United Nations General Assembly to be proactive in addressing security risk versus a reactive approach. As a risk manager, her emphasis was on the need for UN member states to address the security risks more proactively as a way to negate war and promote peaceful resolution of problems.
This approach, she said, includes having a risk assessment for key security risks and embedding security risk indicators that are properly monitored. “Countries should be risk-rated and the associated risks monitored closely to ensure that preventative measures are induced timely,” she said, adding that this will ensure that where a war is probable, the security risk indicators will trigger and proactive measures such as mediation would kickstart to prevent the actual war from materializing.
Not only does the model united nations conference foster youth leadership; it is also a pathway to enable networking with other youth at the international level and work together towards finding solutions to global challenges. There were 170 delegates present, each representing different member states of the United Nations. Represented countries included South Africa, Japan, Nepal, India, Morocco, Nigeria, Burkina Faso, Ukraine, Algeria and Ghana.
Conferences like AYIMUN allow youth to be more patriotic and promote advocacy for youth in playing an active role in solving real life global problems. They also foster debate on the emerging key global issues. The delegates then draft resolutions in response on the issues raised. “It is important for Batswana youth to participate in such forums, and use the key learnings back home to probe youth representation in addressing pressing issues in-country,” Mogotsi concluded.