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UCLG President leads local government at UN-Habitat Council

Posted: 08 May 2017


The world body - United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG) President, Mr Parks Tau, is set to lead local government at the five-day 26th UN-Habitat Governing Council in Nairobi, Kenya, which kicks-off on Monday, 8 May 2017.

This follows his recent appointment into an eight-member United Nations High Level Independent Panel which was established to oversee the effectiveness of the UN-Habitat.

The Governing Council meeting is the first and most important event to discuss the future steps of the implementation of the New Urban Agenda – an outcome document agreed upon in October 2016 at the Habitat III Cities Conference in Quito, Ecuador.

The Agenda is designed to guide efforts on the urbanisation of a wide range of actors that include nation states, city and regional leaders, international development funders, UN programmes and civil society over the next 20 years.

It is also set to lay the foundation for policies and approaches that will extend and impact far into the future.
Tau, who is also the President of the South African Local Government Association (SALGA), said the Governing Council meeting was a critical moment for the future of the UN-Habitat as it will be reviewing its mandate and positioning.

The meeting’s theme is ‘Opportunities for the effective implementation of the New Urban Agenda’, which speaks directly to Tau’s UCLG Presidency commitment to promote a collaborative local government.
“This is to be done through strategic alliances with civil society and private sector investment, piloting of alternative solutions in selected regional cities and towns, as well as through strengthening partnerships with multilateral bodies and development partner,” he said.

The Governing Council meeting also contains three sub-themes that include; promoting access to adequate and sustainable housing, integrated human settlements planning for sustainable urbanisation, and synergies and financing for sustainable urbanisation.

These themes also speak to the objectives of the recent Gauteng Infrastructure Funding Summit - where Tau represented the South African local governments.

At the Summit Tau cited the local government’s Developmental Agenda and innovative funding mechanism as keys to the development of sustainable human settlements.

He further called on the local sector to be at the forefront of driving economic growth, social cohesion and spatial transformation.




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