“Inclusive and accountable institutions” are the “cement” that binds governments and citizens together, and they must be strengthened.

That’s according to UN chief Ban Ki-moon, speaking at a Security Council open debate on Peacebuilding in Africa on Thursday.

He said that peace in Africa remained a “top priority” and warned that when “institutions are weak, nations cannot thrive”.

Matthew Wells has more.

Mr Ban said that peacebuilding “lay at the core” of the UN’s activities in conflict-affected countries worldwide, and needed to be a shared responsibility of all states.

In Africa’s war zones, this was especially true, he added, and all stakeholders needed to nourish the economies and societies that are thriving for the sake of “peace and prosperity”.

The Secretary-General said that institutions and institution-building were fundamental.

“Inclusive and accountable institutions are the cement that bonds States and citizens. They provide security, justice, limit corruption, reduce marginalization and avert ethnic tension. Building effective and legitimate institutions is not easy. But we have learned some fundamental lessons. There are no one-size-fits-all solutions.”

The UN chief added that institutions also needed to deliver to the communities they serve, and stressed that across Africa, the UN system was committed to working “closely as one” to support institution-building.

However, he warned that a large funding gap was threatening to limit the international community’s investment in peacebuilding.

He said that “despite praise” for the UN’s Peacebuilding Fund, “it faces a desperate funding shortfall” and he called on governments to reach a funding target of US$300 million, by September.

Matthew Wells, United Nations.

Duration: 1’17?

Source: United Nations Radio.