Ambassador Evan P. Garcia, Philippine Permanent Representative to the United Nations and Other International Organizations in Geneva, was elected Chair of the Council Bureau of the International Organization on Migration (IOM) during the opening of its 111st session on 24 November 2020, the first Filipino to serve in this capacity. Ambassador Garcia will head the Council until November 2021.
The Council is the highest governing authority of the UN’s migration agency in charge of determining, reviewing, examining, and approving the programs of the IOM. It is holding its annual session virtually this week. IOM, on the other hand, helps ensure the orderly and humane management of migration, promotes international cooperation on migration issues, assists in finding practical solutions to migration problems, and provides humanitarian assistance to migrants in need. The Philippines joined the organization in 1988 and hosts one of its Global Administrative Center in Manila.
At this week’s Council session, Philippine delegate to the meeting Minister Maria Elena Cristina D. Maningat highlighted that “the Philippines’ engagement on global migration governance is informed by over four decades of practice and experience to bring coherence to national, bilateral and multilateral migration governance”.
MInister Maningat also expressed Philippines’ renewed commitment to strengthening global migration governance and advancing the rights and promoting the welfare of migrants, and called for a stronger global consensus to frame human mobility in the context of human rights and social protection, and to strengthen common understandings on shared responsibilities, including through sustained climate action.