UN to hold informal poll for selecting Secy. Gen.
United Nations, July 20 (PTI): The United Nations
Security Council is set to begin the selection process
for a new Secretary General next week when it holds
the first informal poll on candidates in the fray,
including India's nominee Shashi Tharoor.
The "straw" poll will enable the Council to determine
the support each candidate enjoys among its members
but would not necessarily force any one to withdraw
from the contest. The process of finding a new
incumbent to take over from Kofi Annan when he retires
at the end of year is expected to be completed by
Besides, Tharoor, others in the field currently are
Jayantha Dhanapala of Sri Lanka, Surakiart Sathirathai
of Thailand and South Korean foreign minister Ban
Ki-moon who was nominated last week.
Diplomats said in the first of several straw polls,
Council members will be given three choices -
"encourage", "discourage" and "no opinion".
The 15 members will cast votes for each candidate
separately and the result would be made known to the
Ambassadors of the countries which have nominated the
The first straw poll would not make any distinction
between permanent and non permanent members as each
will be given similar ballot. But at a later stage
when the opinions start crystallizing, the veto
wielding five permanent members would be either given
ballot of different colour from those to non permanent
members or asked to use different ink for marking the
That procedure would enable the Council to determine
whether any candidate attracts the veto.Diplomats said
the straw poll would help attract more candidates
early in the selection process.
Meanwhile, the developing nations' proposal to give
more say to the General Assembly in the selection of
the next chief executive seems to have no takers.
The permanent five members including the United
States, Britain, Russia, France and China have
virtually rejected the suggestion that the 15-member
Council send a slate of three candidates and let the
192-member General Assembly take the final decision.
Till date, the Assembly has been "rubber stamping" the
choice of the Council and diplomats do not expect any
change in it.