ILO Centenary

24 hours, 24 destinations, 2 Arab States – ILO’s marks its 100 birthday with ‘virtual’ global tour stops in Lebanon and Jordan

As part of a live 24-hour “Global Tour” of national events in 24 countries, governments, workers and employers marked the ILO Centenary in Jordan and Lebanon by showcasing the agency’s work on the promotion of decent work.

News | 11 April 2019
ILO Regional Director for the Arab States Ruba Jaradat (Far R) speaks at the site of a water reservoir rehabilitated by the ILO’s Employment Intensive Infrastructure Programme in Lebanon (EIIP) as part of the ILO live ‘virtual’ global tour.©ILO
BEIRUT/AMMAN (ILO NEWS)—The ILO Regional Office for Arab States and its partners from government agencies, trade unions, and employers’ organizations have taken part in twin events to mark 100 years since the signing of the Paris Peace Conference and adoption of the ILO Constitution on April 11, 1919.
As part of a day-long ‘virtual’ Global Tour – a live online broadcast from 24 countries in 24 hours – the ILO and its partners in Lebanon and Jordan came together not only to celebrate the agency’s Centenary, but also to reaffirm the ILO constitution’s core principle that ‘universal and lasting peace can be established only if it is based upon social justice.’ The events were attended by high-level delegations and figures from both countries.

“Today we celebrate our and our partners’ achievements in furthering the cause of social justice,” said Ruba Jaradat, ILO Regional Director for Arab States. “We know full well that both the challenges and opportunities we will encounter in realising decent work for so many across the Arab States will require a fully-fledged commitment from ourselves at the ILO, and from our partners across government, workers’ and employers’ organizations.”

(L to R) ILO’s Deputy Director General Greg Vines, Director General of the Jordan Chamber of Industry Maher Al Mahrouq, President of the General Federation of Jordanian Trade Unions Mazen Maaytah, and Samir Murad Minister of Labour attend the unveiling of a mosaic created by people with disabilities the Syrian refugee and Jordanian host communities in Amman, Jordan.©ILO

Jordan: Mosaics & Social Justice

At 1300 in the Jordanian capital Amman (1000 GMT), at an event held under the patronage of Prime Minister Omar Razzaz, Minister of Labour Samir Murad unveiled an intricate mosaic created by people with disabilities from the Syrian refugee and Jordanian host communities. The artists were trained by an ILO programme under the Jordan Compact, which supports economic growth, job creation and quality service delivery in Jordan.

After the unveiling, ILO staff laid out the current Jordan Decent Work Country Programme (J-DWCP) to attendees, followed by focused information sessions on progress made in Jordan by ILO constituents since the country joined the ILO in 1964. Several sessions were also held with the ILOs social partners on ways to advance the goals of the J-DWCP and incorporate the findings of a landmark report by the ILO Global Commission on the Future of Work.

Lebanon: Infrastructure & Decent Work

At 1400 in Lebanon (1100 GMT), ILO Regional Director Ruba Jaradat and representatives of social partners marked the Centenary with an event showcasing a project recently completed as part of the ILO’s flagship Employment Intensive Infrastructure Programme in Lebanon (EIIP). The project rehabilitated a water reservoir in the town of Hamana in Mount Lebanon, to provide drinking water to the town’s population. The EIIP programme in Lebanon is funded by the German Development Bank KfW and has so far created 95,800 workdays for local Lebanese and for Syrian refugees, equivalent to 2,400 short-term jobs.

The Lebanon event also featured video highlights from a previous event held in the capital Beirut under the high patronage of the President of the Lebanese Republic General Michel Aoun, represented by the Minister of Labour Camille Abousleiman, and with the participation of social partners and heads of UN agencies and diplomatic missions. The Beirut event concluded with a performance by renowned Lebanese singer Abeer Nehme.

After Jordan and Lebanon, the day-long ‘virtual’ Global Tour stopped in Egypt, at the Pyramids of Giza for a celebration of music and speeches, before moving on to Kyiv and continuing its track westward. 

The ILO Regional Office for Arab States has been headquartered in Beirut since 1976, where it promotes its Decent Work Agenda in 12 countries and territories across the Arab States. As the only tripartite UN organization, the ILO aims to ensure that it serves the needs of working women and men by bringing together governments, employers and workers together to set labour standards, develop policies, and devise programmes to promote social justice and decent work across the globe.

Find out more about the ILO Centenary.