The commission proposed by Chavez would study the situation of the world and of Third World countries to draw up mid-term strategies that would promote cooperation and the eradication of poverty and underdevelopment.

He underscored the need to follow up on the work of a commission initially set up by the late African leader Julius Nyerere, who presented a report in 1990 on the countries of the South and a package of proposals promoting mutual understanding and cooperation.

"Now that Cuba chairs the Non-Aligned Movement, we must appoint a new commission from the South which adopts that report as its starting point," he said.

Citing Nyerere’s writings which stated "The South does not know the South," the
Venezuelan president said there is a mutual lack of knowledge among countries of the South, a lack of unity, and fruitless individual efforts in which the same old mistakes are repeated with no prospects for new stages of development.

Chavez noted that the commission once led by Nyerere was set up through an agreement made during the 1986 Non-Aligned Summit in Zimbabwe. At that time the Tanzanian leader and his expert group presented the final plan; however the fall of the socialist camp and the former Soviet Union took place leaving the world to be seduced by free-market neo-liberal policies.

After that occurred, he pointed out, the supposed winners of the Cold War attacked the Third World with their neo-liberal debacle. Nyerere’s commission and its valuable studies and proposals were then placed on the back burner and forgotten.

Fifteen years after those developments, Chavez said, the world situation is even
worse. Nonetheless, some of the commission’s proposals are still valuable and applicable, such as the setting up of a Bank of the South, television and radio networks serving the countries of the South and a regional university system.

He affirmed appeals for unity voiced by Cuban President Fidel Castro and other Third World leaders aimed at achieving true unity that allows those countries to create a better world.

"Let us all unite for freedom, for our very existence, to build our own nations ourselves," concluded the Venezuelan leader. Raul Castro, who chairs the session of Heads of State and Government of the Non-Aligned Summit, said that the proposal made by President Chavez will be considered by all 118 delegations and that a response will be given on Saturday.

Cuban Agency News
La Agencia Cubana de Noticias (ACN) es una división de la Agencia de Información Nacional (AIN) de Cuba fundada el 21 de mayo de 1974.

Cuban News Agency