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Summary record of the 22nd meeting : 3rd Committee, held on Wednesday, 22 October 1986, New York, General Assembly, 41st session.

UN Document Symbol A/C.3/41/SR.22
Convention Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities
Document Type Summary Record
Session 41st
Type Document

11 p.

Subjects Ageing Persons, Youth, Persons with Disabilities

Extracted Text

United Nations
Official Records*

22nd meet
Wednesday, 22 October 19
at 5.50 p.
New York

Chairman: Mr. HAMER (Netherlands)

This record is subject to correction. *** should be see under the signature of a member of the delegation concerned within one week of the dot of publication to the Chief of the Official Records Editing Section, room DC2-750. 2 United Nations Plaza, and incorporated in • copy of the record.
Corrections will be issued after the end of the session, in a separate fascicle for each Committee.
86-56903 6019S (E)

Distr. GENERAL A/C.3/41/SR.22 3 November 198 ENGLISH ORIGINAL: SPA

A/C.3/41/SR.22 English Page 2
The meeting was called to order at 5.50 p.m.
1. Mr. MINTSA-ZUE ONDO (Gabon) expressed the condolences of the people and Government of Gabon to Mozambique on the occasion of the tragic death of its President, His Excellency Mr. Samora Michel.
2. Turning to agenda item 86, "Policies and programs involving young people", he recalled that the United Nations had been dealing with that topic since 1948. While at the beginning th]e Organization had concentrated its efforts on the educational aspects, later it stressed the effective participation of young people in the solution of more important contemporary problems. The first practical step taken by the General Assembly in that field was resolution 1572 (XV), adopted in 1960, in which it recommended that Governments and non-governmental agencies should take effective action to promote among youth the ideals of peace; some years later, the Assembly adopted resolution 2037 (XX) concerning the promotion among youth of the ideals of peace, mutual respect and understanding. The process of considering the problems of young people reached its peak when the General Assembly adopted resolution 34/151 in which it proclaimed 1985 as "International Youth Year" with "Participation, Development and Peace" as its main theme. The "Year" embraced a large number of initiatives and presupposed more than ever the raising and solution of many problems in the political, economic, educational, cultural and informational fields. In that context, the various States and the international community must understand that the proclamation of the "International Youth Year" must not be considered as a simple celebration, nor as an end in itself; whatever the results obtained, all the complex problems affecting young people had still not been solved, so that it was necessary to go beyond the framework of the Year.
3. Today more than ever the young generation needed to enjoy the right to participate in social and economic life, the unlimited right to education, and the right to physical education and sport. Health was indispensable for the development of the young but unfortunately there were specific problems in that field which were due to the lack of services and available resources and to the lack of support from both family and society. That explained to a large extent the

Page 3
(Mr. Mlntaa-Zue Ondo, Gabon)
fact that young people were more exposed to such risks as drugs and alcohol, dangerous methods of abortion and inadequate health conditions. The public health authorities must promote primary health care and strategies designed to provide adequate medical attention, especially through training and educational programs aimed at all young people and particularly at adolescents and pre-adolescents of both sexes, so as to prepare them for the stage of procreation and ensure in general terms their health and well-***.
4. Juvenile delinquency and juvenile crime were becoming increasingly serious concerns for the International community: they had reached disquieting proportions in many industrialized countries and in the urban areas of developing regions. Furthermore, the abusive use of drugs, which had been steadily Increasing both in the developed and in the developing countries, was having serious effects on young people and, in addition, drug addiction was affecting younger and younger sectors of the population. The relationships of cause and effect between drug addiction and juvenile delinquency had intensified but the adoption of such measures of deterrence as police Intervention and in the view of the delegation of Gabon, imprisonment did ot constitute an effective long-term solution. Governments should tackle those problems on a global basis, encouraging the adoption and implementation of more appropriate policies and measures.
5. Peace was an essential condition for youth. At the same time, wars, the arms race and other obstacles to international and regional security obviously had negative effects on the development process. Young people could contribute to the achievement of the objectives of international peace and for that reason States should avoid as far as possible involving them in the many armed conflicts which occurred throughout the world and in which they were often the first victims. Furthermore, Governments should educate young people in a spirit of peace, humanism, friendship and mutual understanding and co-operation.
6. The problems of youth were one of the priorities of the Government of Gabon. In that respect, he would quote the worda of the President of Gabon who had always stated: "For me, youth is sacred". Such a remark was not made merely for publicity) it represented the basis for a whole series of specific policies and achievements. It should be emphasized that the Government of Gabon had celebrated International Youth Year with all the seriousness that such an event deserved *** was fully aware of the tasks that had to be accomplished by States and the International community after the commemoration of the Year.
7. He would have liked to have made a brief summary of the specific policies and achievements of Gabon in the field of youth and the arrangements it had made as part of the preparations for International Youth Year, together with the commemorative activities which Gabon had conducted at the national level. However, In view of time restrictions, he would of forgo such an account, in spite of its importance.
8. Finally, he expressed his profound appreciation to the Secretary-General, Mr. Javier Perez de Cuellar, for the excellent reports submitted on items 86 and 87, in response to the request made by the General Assembly at its fortieth session.

A/C.3/41/SR.22 English Page 4
9. Mr. GARAD (Somalia) said his delegation could not over-emphasize the importance of giving children every possible opportunity for self-development so that in adulthood they were better prepared for the responsibility of cat tying on their heritage and traditions. To prepare young people for the challenge of the future, greater attention must be paid to educational systems, family traditions and to social, economic and even political systems. The secret of preparing young people for the future lay in general socio-economic development. One thing to be guarded against was idleness because it was destructive to youth. With the inordinate prolongation of idleness, children became an easy prey to habits which could endanger their moral and physical well-being and lead them into juvenile delinquency and other forms of anti-social behavior.
10. In Somalia, young people played an important role in political, social and economic life. They were involved in the process of nation-building through their participation in youth organizations ouch as co-operative movements, confederations of trade unions and women's organizations. The government had consistently encouraged young people to have a major share in the socio-economic development of the country and they had thus participated in environmental protection and rehabilitation projects, literacy campaigns in rural and urban areas, community self-help schemes, sports activities and youth camps. There was also no doubt as to the importance for social development of caring for the disabled, and many organizations of the United Nations system could play an important role in that area. In that connection, his delegation wished to make a number of suggestions: first, WHO must take an active interest not only in the prevention of disability but also in the treatment and psychological rehabilitation of the disabled, and that interest must be reflected in its programs of work. Secondly, disabled persons must be assisted educationally so that they could adjust to their conditions, and the general public must be educated so that it would have a healthy attitude towards the disabled. Thirdly, public education programs could be launched through such mass media as newspapers, journals, posters, radio, television and documentary films. Finally, States could explore the possibility of establishing an international society for disabled persons, which would have national chapters. Apart from designing programmes of care for the disabled, such a society should enhance government awareness of the issue, mobilize resources and make arrangements for the sharing of experience between national chapters.
11. With regard to agenda item 85, on the question of aging, his Government had been following with interest the activities of the Aging Unit of the Centre for Social Development and Humanitarian Affairs, which should continue to operate within the Department of International Economic and Social Affairs. His delegation was convinced that the creation of any new institution in that area could lead to unnecessary bureaucratic structures which would not in any way help to alleviate the problems of the aged. His Delegation therefore supported the consolidation of existing mechanisms.
12. Lastly, his delegation endorsed the set of important instruments, including the Milan Plan of Action, referred to In the report of the Secretary-General on crime prevention and criminal justice. Measures must be taken to ensure compliance with the aims and objectives of those universal instruments. In that connection, it was gratifying to note that a number of conferences and seminars had been convened to give practical expression to the relevant instruments in the formulation of effective policies for crime prevention and criminal justice.

A/C.3/41/SR.22 English Page 5
13. Mr. DIRAR (Sudan) expressed condolences to the delegation of Mozambique on the death of President samora Michel, one of the outstanding champions of African liberation.
14. The reports of the Secretary-General and the background information provided by the Under-Secretary-General of the Department of International Economic and Social Affairs and the Director of the Social Development Division showed clearly that the interrelated problems faced by the elderly, disabled persons and youth occupied a central place in social development and had been exacerbated by the present economic situation, particularly in Africa, where satisfaction of the population's moot basic needs posed a daily challenge. Realizing that fact and also the need to take account of the human dimension of development, his delegation believed that those problems must be studied in depth.
15. His delegation endorsed the comment by the Under-Secretary-General that austerity and adjustment programmes must not work to the detriment of people and that the latter must not be overlooked, at the risk of weakening the programmes and plans of action being promoted in those areas. In that connection, the implementation of the Programme of Action adopted at the special session of the General Assembly on the critical economic situation in Africa was absolutely essential.
16 With regard to the report in document A/41/531, the progress made in implementing the International Plan of Action on Aging was ***. There could he no doubt, however, that the Plan's implementation had been impeded by the present difficult economic situation. As a result, current efforts must be redoubled, especially with a view to improving the co-ordination indispensable to ensuring that available e resources were put to full use. Since any curtailment of the programs Involved would have serious repercussions, their reduction must be avoided, especially in view of the fact that elderly people could make a positive contribution to development. In that connection, he hoped that the trend referred to in paragraph 45 of the Secretary-General's report would be translated into practical programmes for the developing countries which would emphasize international co-operative and technical assistance. He also attached importance to the periodic review of the progress made in implementing the Plan as a means of ensuring better results in the future.
17. With regard to the item on International Youth Year, the concepts of participation, development and peace summed up fully the part to be played by young people. Thanks to the positive efforts made during the Year, those concepts had now become a reality. His delegation noted with satisfaction the guidelines set forth in the report with regard to the planning of new measures and the adoption of additional measures in the area of youth. The function which young people were being called upon to play in development must be defined more thoroughly, however, and problems influencing the situation of young people must be considered in greater depth, in particular, the unemployment problem had intensified as a result of the deterioration of the economic situation in developing countries and also because of migration from the countryside to the ***. Those problems had not only given rise to profound social and economic ]Imbalances but had also placed the developing countries in an impasse. It was essential that the international community pay special attention to the problems of young refugees and, in particular, young people living in the occupied Arab territories.
/. . .

A/C.3/41/SR.22 English Page 6
(Mr. Dlrar, Sudan)
18. With regard to the question of disabled persons, when developing countries came to promote prevention and re-education programs they were confronted not only with the problem of scarce resources but also with a lack of social services and technical expertise. While the Sudan was no exception to that rule, it had set up a council for the protection of disabled persons. However, although it recognized that national realizations had an important role to play in that area, it believed that such bodies should continue to receive assistance from the Department of International Economic and Social Affairs and the Centre for Social Development and Humanitarian Affairs. It was also essential that the necessary resources be mobilized to ensure implementation of the World Programs of Action concerning Disabled Persons. His delegation would support any initiative aimed at achieving that objective. It was also satisfied with the work done in that sphere by the Economic Commission for Africa, UNICEF and, in particular, the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, which had been placing special emphasis on disabled refugees throughout the world.
19. The report of the Secretary-General contained in document A/41/618 was valuable in that it emphasized not only the factois which were contributing to the increase in delinquency in the world but also the high social cost of delinquency. Sudan, where that scourge had had incalculable consequences, was a case in point. It was necess. therefore to redouble efforts to prevent crime and combat delinquency. However, such efforts could not be based on a purely juridical approach, which would make it difficult to take due account of the adverse effects of delinquency for development.
20. Miss BYRNE (United States of America) expressed her condolences to the delegation of Mozambique for the terrible accident that had claimed the life of President Samora Machel.
21. After congratulating Mr. Yolah and Mr. Sealskin for their contributions to the Committee's work, she expressed the hope that the Organization's current financial crisis would not prevent the Committee from devoting particular attention to disadvantaged social groups. In that connection, the United States attached special importance to the effective operation of the Centre for Social Development and Humanitarian Affairs. It was especially gratified by the considerable progress made thanks to Mrs. Oppenhelmer's efforts to Improve the Centre's management and operations. Mrs. Oppenhelmer's presence at the helm of the Centre was a guarantee that the fragmentation and dissipation of effort which had characterized the Centre's operations in recent years would be avoided and that the Centre would resume the task of promoting the values for which it had been originally created.
22. The United States delegation would like those activities to produce even greater benefits and strongly supported efforts to Improve the Centre's ability to carry out its mandate. It believed that the best way of achieving that end would be to transfer certain social issue fund to UNDF management.
23. Her delegation was satisfied with the outcome of the International Youth Year and believed that. It was now time for CSDHA to undertake follow-up in all the relevant areas.

A/C.3/41/SR.22 English Page 7
(Miss Byrne, United States)
24. It was pleased that virtually every Government that had responded to the Secretary-General's request for comments on the viability of establishing a separate aging programs in the United Nations shared the view that it was premature to consider such a move.
25. The Secretary-General's report (A/41/631) clearly demonstrated that, since the World Assembly on Aging in 1982, the activities in that sphere organized throughout the United Nations system had expanded considerably. Her delegation believed that any draft resolution on that subject submitted to the Committee should emphasize the strengthening of the co-ordination of those activities. it also supported the merging of the two trust funds for aging, and reiterated the proposal made at the Commission for Social Development in 1985 that the combined fund should be placed under the administration of UNDP. That would improve the likelihood of increased voluntary support for aging activities and enable them to be put in the mainstream of United Nations technical co-operation programs. Thus, the Centre for Social Development and Humanitarian Affairs would remain the central co-ordinating point for United Nations aging activities and would continue to promote implementation of the Plan of Action.
26. Both the World Programs of Action concerning Disabled Persons and the United Nations Decade of Disabled Persons generated substantial interest among the
35 million disabled United States citizens. Accordingly, her delegation was eagerly awaiting the mid-Dacjde review of progress to be conducted in 1987. In that regard, she referred to resolution 1986/16, which her delegation had introduced and the Economic and Social Council had adopted at the spring session. The resolution called upon the Secretary-General to ensure that appropriate attention was focused on the problems of the disabled in United Nations programmes and that greater publicity, was given to the objectives of the Decade of Disabled Persons. Her delegation was therefore prepared to support a draft resolution calling for greater attention to be devoted to the disabled in the programs budget for the biennium 1988-1989 and in the next medium-term plan (1990-1995). The draft resolution should also call for the Voluntary Fund for the United Nations Decade of Disabled Persons to be administered by UNDP, which would enhance the effectiveness technical co-operation activities on behalf of the disabled.
27. On the subject of the interregional consultation on developmental social
welfare policies and programs, which was scheduled to take place in Vienna in
1987, she recalled that, while her delegation had supported the decision of the
Economic and Social Council to convene the consultation, it had emphasized the
vital need for such a meeting to be adequately prepared, particularly if the
meeting was to attract sufficient interest for it to take place at the ministerial
level, as was hoped. Her delegation's concerns were now even stronger than before.
Given the current severe budget constraints, the Secretariat was less sanguine than
it had been about being able to provide the kind of analysis of social issues that
would be appropriate for a ministerial meeting. Indeed, far from accelerating
progress in the development of social policy and the sharing of experience on
social programs, an insufficiently prepared meeting could retard progress. Her
delegation therefore proposed that the Committee should consider deferring the

A/C.3/41/SR.22 English Page 8
(Mlea Byrne, United States)
28. Her delegation very strongly supported the effective follow-up action to the Milan Congress on the Prevention of Crime and the Treatment of Offenders. Narcotics trafficking, money laundering, organized crime and terrorism were crimes that threatened all civilized c**entries and joint efforts must be made to stamp out international crime and punish those individuals and States that promoted it.
29. Mrs. BAZIYAKA (Rwanda) said that the International community, and the United Nations especially, had recognized the important role that the young and the disabled could play in development. One had only to recall the International Youth Year, the United Nations World Conference for the International Youth Year and the Secretary-General's own reports which stressed participation, development and peace in relation to youth.
30. Much of the success of the International Youth Year was due to the Specific Programme of Measures and Activities drawn up by the Advisory Committee for the International Youth Year, its implementation by the national co-ordinating committees and similar bodies, and the co-operation provided by authorities. The young, for their part, had shown creativity and openness to new ideas and change, qualities essential for social involvement, development, and the attainment of world peace, security and co-operation.
31. As a basis for a permanent world strategy on youth and to continue the work of the International Youth Year, the Advisory Committee had drawn up guidelines for further planning and suitable follow-up which took account of the socio-economic context in which policies and programs would have to function. It was to be hoped that in his next evaluation report on the results of the International Youth Year, the Secretary-General would put the same emphasis on the specific focus which had given such good results in the case of the Programs.
32. As the Committee had already been informed, the International Year had seen activities in favor of the young intensified under a strategy for youth up to the year 2000, designed around short-, medium- and long-term objectives, promulgated by her country's Ministry of Youth. Organization of those activities was the responsibility of the Ministry and the Co-operative Movement. The Ministry had called on consultants from international organizations to carry out three studies on youth and economic, social and cultural development; in the training field, it was arranging a variety of seminars and short courses for young people and training for managerial personnel at its own centers. Training young people in rural areas not only enabled them to earn their own living but slowed the migration to urban centers in search of employment. Public information and consciousness-raising activities were carried out through local meetings, the radio, the press, field visits and seminars. The machinery for youth integration sought to support the traditional family framework and socio-economic groupings so as to create jobs.
33. Turning to the item on the disabled, she said her delegation was pleased that, within the World Programs of Action concerning Disabled Persons, ECA was finalizing a regional programs of action for the disabled which, it hoped, would be adopted by consensus at the fifth Conference of African Ministers of Social Affairs to be held in Abidjan (C6te d'lvoire) in early 1987.

A/C.3/41/SR. 22 English Page 9
(Mrs, Batziyaka, Rwanda)
34. The questionnaire on progress made up to the mid-point of the Decade was not, in her view, specific enough to afford a thorough understanding of the needs of the developing countries in that area, since it included no questions on the proportions of disabled people by category of impediment, the number of technical personnel and experts needed to carry out the various programs, or similar matters.
35. Her country .had been catering to the needs of the physically and mentally disabled for decides, largely by encouraging and enhancing the role of the private sector. In the search for solutions to the problems of rehabilitation, re-employment and soclal reintegration for the disabled, and the prevention of disablement, emphasis had been laid on the need for action by the Government and by the disabled person's own family; in 1985 the ruling party had passed a resolution increasing assistance for disabled schooling. In 1980 the Head of State, as part of the International Year of Disabled Persons, had called upon the people of Rwanda to collaborate in the social reintegration of the disabled, reaffirming the Government's firm commitment to support the Rehabilitation Centre for the Physically Disabled and help to increase the financial viability of production co-operatives operated by disabled people.
36. The most important activities undertaken at the initiative of the National Committee for the International Year of Disabled Persons and the United Nations Decade of Disabled Persons included the addition of a section on special education in the organic law on national education; the operation of a special education service within the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education; the operation of a health care and social activities fund within the Rwandese social security system; the establishment of a service to prevent the accidents which caused disability} and a seminar, preceded by a *** table, attended by public and private services whose representatives had expressed the wish to work within a more co-ordinate framework in order to provide more consistent coverage based on real participation by all concerned with service to the handicapped. It must be admitted however, that those services lacked the scientific data necessary for effective action and were also short of competent staff.
37. Now that the International Year of Disabled Persons was over, the Ministry of Social Assistance was considering specific solutions to the problems of the disabled, in particular by designing projects and trying to obtain funds. In 1981, for example, it had presented the Centre for Social Development and Humanitarian Affairs with a request for assistance in the social rehabilitation of disabled women. The Ministry was grateful to the Centre for the favorable reception given to its application, and hoped that the reply would be positive.
38. Despite the crisis the United Nations was going through, her delegation hoped
that International co-operation would allow work on the week with the disabled to
continue with the establishment of four vocational training centres for physically
disabled young people. It also hoped that such co-operation would allow
preliminary studies to be carried out and the necessary arrangements made to train
competent, effective staff so that the centers work for the disabled could be
carried on by a greater number of staff for each type of disability.

Page 10
39. Mr. ZARIF-KHONSART (Islamic Republic of Iran), speaking in exercise of the right of reply, said that the triumph of Iran's Islamic revolution, won at the cost of enormous sacrifices, was due to the involvement of the entire population, including the elderly and the young the name population which continued to be involved in all sectors of society. It was not surprising, therefore, that the young, prompted by the ideology of struggle and resistance to aggression and oppression, also insisted on becoming involved in Iran's defensive strugqle. That ideology, which had contributed so much to the triumph of the revolution, had taught a lesson to those who had arrogantly invaded Iran counting on a swift victory.
40. It was surprising, on the other hand, that the delegation of Iraq had not made use of the Committee's discussions on aging to defend the right to life of the victims of its own expansionist aqaression, particularly if one considered that the elderly, who shared that ideology, were also involved in the defensive struggle.
By what authority did a regime which did not hesitate to bombard civilian areas speak of the right to life?
41. The President of Iraq - who, before invading Iran, had had no scruples about
saying that the Algiers accord had applied when his country was weak but, now that
it was stronger, was no longer necessary - was now desperately talking of peace.
It was an insult to the Committee that a country which had invaded another in order to topple its revolution and annex its territory should now seek to cover up its criminal policies.
42. In a letter addressed to the Secretary-General in November 1985, his delegation had brought the names of 199 Iraqi prisoners of war, all minors under Iraqi civil legislation, to the attention of the International community. The list had grown since then. On the other hand, the Iranian youths who, according to Iraq, had taken part in Iran's defensive struqgle, were all adults under the Civil Code of the Islamic Republic of Iran. Be that as it might, his Government was willing to arrange an immediate exchange of those young prisoners of war. If Iraq was really concerned about the fate and riqhts of young people, it would have co-operated. So far, however, its response had been negative.
43. Mr. ADNAN (Iraq), speaking in exercisa of the right of reply, said that the aggressive intent of the Iranian authorities was obvious in the statements they made, which affirmed that the fortunes, existence and survival of the Iranian revolution were bound up with the war. The war, which in six years had left thousands of people dead, wounded, mutilated or imprisoned, was for Khomeini a God-given sacred duty. For Iraq, on the other hand, peace was God's gift to mankind. It was his reference to that fact which had upset the representative of Iran. Iraq, for its part, called for everything possible to be done to convince the Iranian authorities, whose hands were stained with the blood of innocent youths, to desist from such crimes against their own people and the people of Iraq. In essence, Iran's own young people faced the option of dying in the war or perishing in Khomeini's prisons. He therefore appealed to the Iranian authorities to desist from violating human rights, especially those of the young, and stop belittling the value of human life. Meanwhile, the Iranian authorities continued to speak of war and publicly threatened Iraq with new attacks. The tragedy was that, although the attacks were doomed to failure, thousands of young people still died in them. The time had come for the international community to try to rescue them from the bloodlust of the Iranian authorities. By contrast, Iraq did recognize the value of human life and tried to save its young people.

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44. Mr. ZARIF-KHONSARI (Islamic Republic of Iran), speaking in exercise of the right of reply, said that, while the representative of Iraq might now be speaking of peace and the cost in human lives and suffering which the war was exacting from the peoples of Iran and Iraq, he wondered whether that same regime had considered the consequences six years previously, when it had decided to invade Iran, or whether the President of Iraq had planned for them when he told a group of neighboring Arab countries offering to mediate in the conflict that, if they were not ready to fight on his side, they had no call to talk of peace. It was curious how the strategy and logic of aggression turned, in the face of possible defeat, into a strategy of deception. Without going into detail on Iraq's human rights record, he would simply say that a country which used chemical weapons in violation of international law and had a policy of bombarding civilian areas was not best placed to speak of the right to life. Such deceitful tactics, born of desperation, would not alter the Iraqi regime's true, expansionist and aggressive face.
45. Mr. ADNAN (Iraq), speaking in exercise of the right of reply, said that, as many documents made plain, Iraq had, since the outbreak of the war, launched many appeals for peace which had remained unanswered by Iran because Iran was pursuing a policy of aggression and exporting its revolution. There could be no doubt that, personally, the representative of Iran wanted peace, but an end to the tragedy of the war did not depend on him, but on the power that ruled Iran through terror and bloodshed. That much was clear from that power's own statements, when it said that mercy killing was permissible, arguing that the only way to reform some people was by hacking them into bits and tossing them in the bonfire. No effort must be spared until, one day, Iran and Iraq were once again living in peace.
46. Ms. KAMAL (Secretary of the Committee), replying to a question on night meetings raised at the previous meeting by the Argentine delegation, said that there were not enough rooms to hold meetings of all the Main Committees simultaneously, and each Committee was normally entitled to hold seven meetings per week. In the past week, the Committee had to request services for an additional night meeting in order to hear all the listed speakers. To prevent that from happening, delegations were always asked to put their names early on the list of speakers so that the work of the Committee could be better distributed and night meetings need not be held at the last moment.