Perak Sultan: Merging of humanitarian, development assistance vital

Sultan Nazrin said both areas of work must now focus urgently on the shared goals of reducing vulnerability and building resilience. NSTP/Effendy Rashid

KUALA LUMPUR: Amid the ever-worsening humanitarian needs created by the interaction of environmental and political crises, Sultan of Perak Sultan Nazrin Muizzuddin Shah has underscored that the merging of humanitarian and development assistance has become more urgent than ever.

The sultan said that only through building local capacity and resilience over the longer term that humanitarian actors would be able to contribute effectively towards reducing vulnerabilities.

“And by focusing on those most in need, development actors will be able to play their part most effectively in the fulfilment of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). In this way, both can contribute to nation-building that is ultimately what local resilience is all about,” Sultan Nazrin said when opening Mercy Malaysia’s International Humanitarian Conference in Petaling Jaya today.

In his speech, the Sultan reflected on the recommendations and progress achieved since the delivery three years ago of the wide-ranging report titled ‘Too Important to Fail’ by the United Nations High-Level Panel on Humanitarian Financing. Sultan Nazrin had served on the panel.

In the speech titled ‘Humanitarian Action and Nation-Building’, the Sultan pointed out that it was the panel which had made the initial call for much stronger linkages between humanitarian and development work, in part, to ensure that resources were used as efficiently as possible.

“They do after all share the same fundamental objective of assisting those most in need, and better collaboration can help both achieve this more effectively,” he said.

Sultan Nazrin said both areas of work must now focus urgently on the shared goals of reducing vulnerability and building resilience – objectives that were encapsulated in the SDGs.

Of particular relevance, he said, were the SDGs on health and well-being, zero hunger, clean water and sanitation, as well as other cross-cutting areas such as gender equality, climate action, peace, justice and strong institutions.

“As the panel clearly concluded, it’s only by working together towards the collective outcomes embodied in the SDGs that humanitarian and development agencies will be able to contribute most effectively towards achieving these.

“These contributions to the development process, however limited they may be in challenging settings, will in turn contribute to nation-building processes, however tentative and fragile,” the Sultan said. – Bernama

By Bernama.

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