The UN is a multilateral institution established to maintain peace and security around the world. In doing so, it has established itself as a force to ensuring that human rights of individuals are protected. Subsequently after its establishment, its membership grew to include other member countries from Africa and Asia, opening of the need for and discussions on development in these continents. This was how the United Nations Development Programme was established to bring about development in these continents where development in many cases was non existent. Development came in various forms, ranging from providing infrastructure and creating enabling environments for businesses to thrive, down to eradication of diseases and hunger. Funding for these projects majorly come from voluntary donations to assessed contributions.
The UN being a global body with States as its members will only come into a crises situation where invited by its members. On a few occasions, especially where world peace or human lives are threatened, it would come into the State uninvited. This would only occur after all diplomatic attempts to get all parties to the table fails. The UN Mission for Ebola Emergency Response (UNMEER) is a very good example to cite. According to the UN website, UNMEER was created in 2014 after a resolution in the General Assembly and an adoption by the security council, as a temporary emergency measure to support the fight against the deadly disease. It deployed financial, logistical and human resources to Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone. It was the first of its kind. The first UN emergency health mission and it was shut down in 2015 after it had fulfilled its objective of scaling up response on the ground. In Africa today as a result of these interventions, Ebola has been curbed.
The UN can be effective in crises situations where there are coordinated efforts between agencies and programs to tackling a particular crises. The problem of effectiveness lies with the UNs huge size and overlapping functions of its numerous agencies. According to Joachim Muller in his paper on UN Systems Coordination, where many agencies and teams are merged together, UN effectiveness in providing aid and handling crises situations will shine through.
United nation responding in various crises by using different ways some them are :
AID AND ASSISTANCE:This is one of the major advantages a country gets from being part of the United Nations organization. In the event that the country is plagued with a major disaster such as a major earthquake, tsunami or flood, the UN would not hesitate for a moment sending help to the country.
ECONOMICAL BENEFITS OF A COUNTRY:A nation that is a member of the United Nations stands to benefit greatly through the United Nation’s special agencies, the World Bank Group and International Monetary Fund (IMF). For example, a country that is part of the United Nations can have access to loans from the World Bank which can be used to develop the country and boost the country’s economy. This sadly cannot be enjoyed by a country that is not a member of the United Nations. The IMF also gives UN member nations emergency loans. This is mostly given to indebted countries.
Strengthening of the health sector of a country: The United Nations helps member nations to strengthen their health sectors. The UN does this mainly through its very famous agency, the World Health Organization (WHO).
Member countries – especially the poor ones end up benefiting greatly from some of the objectives of the WHO such as the eradication of the child mortality, maternal health and the fight against HIV/AIDS and malaria. Thanks to the WHO from the United Nations,many member countries in places such as Africa, Asia and certain parts of South America have been able to curb the menace of HIV/AIDS through the resources and logistics giving to them by the World Health Organization to promote health.
UN helps in refugee camps, responding health issues, like Ebola case actions but the longer term solution needs to be find out.
Many people believe that Security council could work more effectively and not to be a handicap to effective action. And of course the instrumental is the establishment of effective coordination mechanisms.
A lot of reform initiatives of UN,e.g. High Level Panel on UN System wide coherence in areas of development, System wide action on climate change, humanitarian assistance and environment to improve the coordination, different declarations, e,g, aid effectiveness, which was embodied in Global Fund, and the initiative to deliver as one. .
However, there are some barriers for better coordination which is essential. Maintaining coordination is a lengthy process . streamlining and consolidation of mandates appears to be the precondition of coherent and effective action to respond crises.