Aussies call for more — better — candidates

The Australian reports on the Australian perspective on the UN race. Good excerpts:

"I've said to the P5 representatives that I think the Annan succession is the most important decision that will be made here this year," the former defence minister told The Australian.

"But the process is too reactive and I don't think that gives you the strongest pool of candidates. I can't think of any major organisation that needs to select a new chief executive that waits for one to emerge rather than proactively seeking to identify someone suitable."

He also calls for outsiders:

He had asked the P5 to look for candidates outside the UN, saying a cleanskin would not face the same cultural hurdles that disadvantaged Mr Annan. "The UN is a difficult administration and it gets back to how much flexibility the secretary-general has in running the operation.

"In circumstances where there is limited flexibility and the person comes from within the UN system, I think that can make it more difficult.

"There are no doubt some very good people from within the system, but I think it has been a burden for Kofi Annan."

And he indicates that the Australian does not support the Indian proposal:

Mr Hill said Australia was opposed to an Indian-led push for a series of names to be given to the General Assembly.

"The process should be driven from the top – it should be a top down process," he said.

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