"Dignity" must guide roadmap to ending poverty, says UN chief

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Village shop at dusk in Sri Lanka lit by solar panels. Photo: World Bank/Dominic Sansoni

Leaders around the world should be guided by dignity in all their efforts to end poverty, transform lives and protect the planet.

That's the message that was delivered by UN Secretary-General at a meeting on Thursday to mark the 20th anniversary of the World Summit for Social Development.

Stephanie Castro reports.

In his address, the Secretary-General said two decades ago in Copenhagen, Denmark, the international community came together to affirm that social development and social justice are fundamental for sustainable development.

Ban Ki-moon said the World Summit stressed the integrated nature of social, economic and environmental pursuits.

He said the citizens of the world should continue to be placed at the centre of development. 

"There is one word above all that must guide us on this roadmap to ending poverty, transforming lives and protecting the planet. That word is: dignity, dignity. Too often in the past, policymakers have focused on economic growth – without taking into account social concerns or environmental factors." (29")

The Secretary-General said 2015 must be a year of global action, as it marks the target date for meeting anti-poverty Millennium Development Goals and the adoption of a new development agenda. 

Stephanie Castro, United Nations

Duration: 1’03″

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