United Nations Organ – Secretariat
The Secretariat is the main organ of the United Nations. The provisions regarding the Secretariat are described under Articles 97 to 101 of Chapter 15 of the United Nations Charter.
According to Article 97 of the Charter, the Secretariat shall consist of a Secretary-General and such other staff as may be required by the Organization.
The Secretary-General of the United Nations will be the Chief Administrative Officer in the Secretariat.
The Secretary-General is elected by the General Assembly on the recommendation of the Security Council. The recommendation of the Security Council to the General Assembly is made by a vote of nine members, including a unanimous vote of the permanent members. The General Secretary of the Secretariat was elected sequentially-
Norway’s Trigveli was the first Secretary-General of the United Nations. Sweden’s Dag Hammer Sold second, Varma’s U Thant third, Austria’s Kurt Waldheim fourth, Peru’s Javier Perez de Cuellar fifth – this was also the second time he was elected, therefore seventh by rank and sixth by person, Secretary General Boutros Ghali and Kofi Annan of Ghana was elected the seventh General Secretary. The eighth Secretary-General is Ban Ki-moon of South Korea.
The Secretary-General of the United Nations is the de facto international civil servant who is expected to be impartial and accountable only to the United Nations Charter and member states.
In addition to the General Secretary, the Secretariat also has other staff as per the requirements of the organization.
The staff of the Secretariat are appointed by the Secretary-General subject to such regulations as may be established by the General Assembly. In the employment of employees and in the concept of conditions of service, it is necessary to take care that their efficiency, competence and integrity are of the highest standard. Apart from this, care will also be taken that the employees are recruited on a geographical basis as wide as possible
Powers and functions of the Secretary-General
The Head of the Secretariat, the Secretary-General, performs a wide range of functions, which are granted to him by the Charter. These main functions are as follows –
The ‘Secretary-General’ serves at all meetings of the General Assembly, the Security Council, the Economic and Social Council, the Council of Trustees and performs such other functions as may be assigned to it by these organs.
The Secretary-General is expected to submit an annual report to the General Assembly on the work of the United Nations.
The Secretary-General, with the consent of the Security Council, informs the General Assembly at each session of the matters relating to international peace and security that the Security Council is dealing with.
When the Security Council ceases to deal with matters relating to the maintenance of international peace and security, the Secretary-General notifies the General Assembly or, if the General Assembly is not in session, the members of the United Nations.
The Secretary-General may draw the attention of the Security Council to any matter which, in his opinion, is likely to endanger the very existence of international peace and security. The right to convene a meeting of the Council under Article 99 has been seldom exercised expressly. Secretary General Trigweli claimed that he had used Article 99 during the Korean armed conflict.
The Secretary-General may, at the request of a majority of the members of the United Nations or at the request of the Security Council, call a special meeting or an objectionable meeting of the General Assembly.
In connection with the election of the judges of the International Court of Justice, the Secretary-General performs a number of functions –
- He requests the national group for nomination.
- He prepares a list of nominations and presents the list to the General Assembly and the Security Council.
- When a Judge of the Court resigns, the President of the Court informs the Secretary-General, and upon receipt of this information, he vacates the office in accordance with paragraph 4 of Article 13 of the Statute of the Court. After it Secretary-General, makes arrangements for election of new judge.
- International Law