‘Remarkable feat of human ingenuity’: UNGA prez Abdulla Shahid hails scientists
President of the 76th session of the United Nations General Assembly Abdulla Shahid on Tuesday hailed the scientists and researchers producing multiple vaccines against the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) in record time.
Addressing the plenary of the 76th UNGA, the Maldivian foreign minister, who was elected as the President for this year's session, called the invention of Covid-19 vaccines a “remarkable feat of human ingenuity.”
“In record time, humanity has produced multiple viable vaccines for Covid-19. Scientists and researchers from dozens of countries collaborated on a remarkable feat of human ingenuity,” Abdulla Shahid said, adding, that the largest vaccine roll-out in the history of mankind is currently underway.
Shahid called the vaccine invention a “monumental undertaking" even as he acknowledged the vaccination is not without flaw.
“While certainly not without flaws, it is monumental in its undertaking. For these accomplishments alone, we should be proud,” Shahid told the gathering of world leaders.
“The world wants peace of mind. The people want solutions to the challenges we collectively face,” he added.
Shahid opened UN General Assembly’s high-level meeting for leaders of its 193 member nations by challenging delegates to rise to the occasion. “There are moments in time that are turning points. This is one such moment," he said.
More than 100 heads of state and government kept away by the pandemic are returning to the United Nations in person for the first time in two years. But with the pandemic still raging, about 60 will deliver pre-recorded statements over coming days.
“We are on the edge of an abyss — and moving in the wrong direction," Guterres said. “I’m here to sound the alarm. The world must wake up," UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said in his speech.
Guterres said people may lose faith not only in their governments and institutions but in basic values when they see their human rights curtailed, corruption, the reality of their harsh lives, no future for their children — and “when they see billionaires joyriding to space while millions go hungry on Earth.”