Call for equal access to health coverage

4 May 2021

President Cyril Ramaphosa says a vital lesson learnt from the Coronavirus pandemic is the necessity for collective leadership, collaboration, solidarity and innovation among the countries of the world.

“As we prepare for future pandemics, we need to accelerate efforts to realise universal health coverage. We need to ensure that vaccines and other life-saving treatments are considered a public good,” President Ramaphosa said.

Addressing the Friends of Multilateralism’s roundtable on the work of the Independent Panel for Pandemic Preparedness and Response on Tuesday, he said while the pandemic has highlighted the value of partnership, it has also demonstrated the damaging effects of unilateral action and unequal access to resources.

3rd May Constitution

by Andrzej Kanthak, Ambassador of the Republic of Poland to South Africa and Dainius Junevičius, Ambassador of the Republic of Lithuania to  South Africa

3 May 2021

Europe’s oldest constitution sees Poland and Lithuania commemorating 230th anniversary of their Commonwealth constitution adoption on 3 May 2021.

For 226 years (1569 - 1795), both Poland and Lithuania formed a common state known as the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. In sixteenth and early seventeenth century the Commonwealth experienced its Golden Age, at the time it was the largest state in Europe.

Since the end of the 17th century, the political and economic power of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth began its fast and deep decline. The Commonwealth, surrounded by enemies, was unable to respond to the aggression of its neighbours. The destruction of the country and its economy was also related to political turmoil and the degradation of the political and social institution of the Commonwealth.

The pride of the Republic of Poland

The 230th anniversary of the enactment of the Polish Constitution, the first in Europe, should be an inspiring holiday for the whole of today’s Europe - by Andrzej Duda, President of Poland

3 May 2021

Filled with the joy of spring, we are celebrating a great Polish holiday whose origins date back to the 18th century. It marks the anniversary of the Constitution signed on the 3rd of May 1791 also known as the Government Act or the Constitution of 3 May. It was Europe’s first and the world’s second modern act of this type and a truly momentous piece of legislation. Its adoption by the Great Sejm of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth held in Warsaw was a historic breakthrough. The legacy of the Constitution, the idea of a political system it contains as well as its liberating and democratic message all make an important contribution to European heritage. Indeed, the 230th anniversary of the enactment of the Constitution should be an inspiring holiday for the whole of today’s Europe.

Hashimoto Seiko appointed as Tokyo 2020 President

28 April 2021

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) warmly welcomes the decision of the Tokyo 2020 Executive Board to appoint seven-time Olympian Hashimoto Seiko as the new President of the Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee. She took over as President on 18 February 2021, She was the Minister for the Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games, Minister in charge of Women's Empowerment and Minister of State for Gender Equality in the Government of Japan.

IOC President Thomas Bach said: “My heartfelt congratulations go to my fellow Olympian Hashimoto Seiko on her appointment as President of the Organising Committee Tokyo 2020. With her great Olympic experience, having won a medal, participated in seven editions of the Olympic Games and the Olympic Winter Games, and having led Japan’s delegation to the Olympic Games multiple times, she is the perfect choice for this position. She will ensure that the focus in the final months of preparation remains on the athletes’ experience while planning all the necessary COVID-19 countermeasures.

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