Imagine there are elections in your country today and you will vote for your favourite candidate to represent you on a global level. This person, whom you can directly talk to about your concerns, takes your ideas to the global parliament.
For European readers this might sound familiar, as they have the world’s most developed regional parliament with direct votes. In fact, the global parliament is not as utopian as it might seem at first. It’s more like the last step of globalization, as global cooperation already takes place as we speak.
The United Nations, the World Trade Organization or the World Bank are some of these global institutions. Yet they lack parliamentary (or parliamentarian) representation. The Campaign for the Establishment of a United Nations Parliamentary Assembly (CEUNPA) wants to change this.
“The global parliament is more of a reform than a revolution”, says Friedrich Brandi from the campaign for UNPA, as the global parliament is officially called. The name “UNPA” was not randomly chosen. The parliament should become part of the United Nations family making use of the organization’s global legitimacy and framework.
The campaign has had support from members of parliament, academia, NGOs, personalities and citizens from around the globe and has collected about 1000 signatures. The international campaign is coordinated from Berlin. “From here we know which NGO in which country is actively supporting the campaign. The success of the campaign strongly depends on how active the local NGO engages in lobbying for the UNPA”, says Brandi. India and Canada are strong supporters, while it’s more challenging in USA.
Issues debated would be those affecting all citizens of the world, such as lack of drinking water, poverty, social justice, armed conflicts or climate change. There are concrete proposals already of how the UNPA should be constituted (e.g. number of seats, proportion of representation, location, etc.). “The proposals are drafted as realistically as possible so that when time comes they can actually be put into practice. This is why it is important for the campaign to convince more academia to join the project”, explains Brandi.
But of course anybody can support the campaign for more global democracy, for example by becoming a member of the campaign committee of the local NGO in your country. “You can also create a new supporting group wherever you are. The more we grow, the more we show politicians and media that we want this change”, says Brandi, who himself was a sceptical of the project when he first heard of it.
Author: Josephine Landertinger Forero
For an interactive map with supporters by countries click here.
For more information about the campaign visit www.uncampaign.org or join their facebook page.
Dr. Butros Butros-Ghali, former UN Secretary General: “We need to promote the democratization of globalization, before globalization destroys the foundations of national and international democracy. The establishment of a Parliamentary Assembly at the United Nations has become an indispensable step to achieve democratic control of globalization.”