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President of the UNESCO General Conference visiting the IBE

H.E. Mr Stanley Mutumba Simataa, President of the 38th session of the UNESCO General Conference and Deputy Minister of Information and Communication Technology of the Republic of Namibia visited the IBE on 13 April 2016.


The President was welcomed by the Director of the International Bureau of Education (IBE), Dr. M. Marope, and by Mr A. Almuzaini, Director of the UNESCO Liaison Office in Geneva (GLO). During the meeting with all the IBE and GLO staff, Dr M. Marope thanked H.E. Mr Simataa for giving the entire staff the chance to discuss opportunities and challenges of collaboration with UNESCO Headquarters and the governing bodies of the Organization. “The President of the General Conference is the representative of all UNESCO Member States, and therefore his visit is a strong statement of interest in what the IBE and GLO are implementing within the policy and strategic framework set by Member States” she said.
During the meeting, the IBE Director presented the main elements of the IBE’s strategy aimed at promoting a new shared global understanding of curriculum issues. She also provided the President with an overview of the six core programmatic areas intended to bring support and innovative solutions to the challenges ministries of education and governments face in the complex task of improving the quality and relevance of their curriculum, teaching, learning, and assessment processes and outcomes.
H.E. Mr Simataa briefed IBE and GLO staff on the most recent discussions of the governing bodies and thanked the staff members for their important contribution to the work of UNESCO. He also mentioned that his visit will give him a better understanding of how the IBE works and contributes to the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goal for education (SDG 4) and the Education 2030 Framework for Action. He also recalled that education and is crucial to the attainment of all the new Sustainable Development Goals, and therefore it is one of the most powerful and proven tool for sustaining progress across the multiple goals.
H.E. Mr. Simataa then visited the exhibition celebrating the 90th anniversary of IBE at the League of Nations Museum (Palais des Nations, Geneva). Through images, text and a floating timeline, the President of UNESCO’s General Conference discovered some important milestones of IBE’s history since its creation in 1925 as well as the pioneering role played by IBE in the field of educational development and innovation over many decades.
The Directors of IBE and GLO thanked H.E. Mr. Simataa most warmly for his visit and expressed the hope that this will serve to further strengthen collaboration and cooperation within UNESCO.
H.E. Mr Simataa has been elected President of the 38th session of the General Conference of UNESCO in November 2015. H.E. Mr Simataa brings to UNESCO over 30 years of professional, managerial and governance experience. As Deputy Minister, he is the originator of several progressive initiatives moving Namibia a step closer to promoting knowledge for development and access of information for all. H.E. Mr Simataa also served as Executive Director of the National Council for Higher Education from 2007 to 2010. He once served as Deputy Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Education, and as Director in the Speaker's Office of the National Assembly.