The future of Africa is played in their cities

 
Source: El País
The Africities Summit makes it clear that urbanization is no longer an option for the development of Africa, but an essential part of its solution.
Africa is becoming urban. The continent not only has the fastest urban growth rate in the world (by 2050, African cities will hold an additional 950 million people), but it is the youngest continent (by the end of this century, half of the world’s youth). they will be African). And young people migrate to the cities. They look for employment. They force planners and urban planners to give urgent answers to these projections that are already a reality: demographic density, overflowing growth of human settlements, youth unemployment, climate change, internal and external migrations …

For the Africities Summit that has just taken place in Marrakech, these great challenges also come in the form of opportunities. Undoubtedly, this event organized every three years by United Cities and Local Governments of Africa (CGLUA), is the most important one joining cities and African municipal governments with financial institutions, companies, civil society organizations and international development partners. .

This eighth edition was presented with the theme “The transition to sustainable cities and territories, the role of local and subnational governments in Africa” ​​and its main objective was to address the main challenges facing the continent for the realization of Vision 2063 of the African Union. According to data offered by the organization, a total of 8,000 congressmen from more than 53 countries attended, with more than 2,500 mayors and elected representatives. Old editions were held in cities such as Johannesburg, Nairobi, Dakar, Yaoundé, Windhoek or Abidjan. The next edition is scheduled for 2021 in Kisumu, Kenya.

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8,000 participants. 53 countries. 1 goal: the transition to sustainable cities and territories ► This was 8th edition of # Africities8, which brought towns and regions from Africa and Europe ever closer to a sustainable future

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It is noteworthy that this edition has devoted a whole day to climate and another to migration, as well as having organized for the first time an African Youth Forum, framing what are probably the three main concerns of African cities today: climate change, migrations and youth. For Jean Pierre Elong Mbassi, Secretary General of UCLGA and president of the Conference, these events are essential to recover hope in the continent:

The citizens of Africa are realizing that the future of the world will be played in Africa, especially in their cities. Although some try to make Africans believe that the continent is poor, Africa is not poor, it is a continent rich in resources, with an innovative drive towards sustainability and an efficient transition to democracy. But to truly progress, Africans have to re-believe in ourselves and in our continent.

This commented with a characteristic smile and surrounded by journalists. Jean Pierre likes to emphasize that two thirds of the wealth of countries occurs within their cities and adopts a more serious and solemn gesture when talking about African urban development:

Assistants listen to the interventions of the Africities Summit in Marrakech GEISEL GARCÍA GRAÑA CAD PRODUCTIONS

We must take African cities more seriously. Improve urban public services. Expand the public space. Renew mobility Facilitate the exchange between citizens.

The corridors of Africities are full of local African leaders who are experienced in municipal management; jugglers of consensus with the circumscriptions of territories; representatives accustomed to being elected by neighbors of the neighborhoods that saw them grow. All of them are clear that their challenge now is the assault on the global agenda. Conquer the global to recover the local. Whether it is migration problems, unemployment, the effects of climate change or gender equity. Their closeness to problems and people positions them to propose more appropriate solutions to the challenges that come.

United Cities @ uclg_org

– We just published the of # Africities8

Do not miss all the details of the #UCLGMeets sessions held with members and partnerships at #Africities Summithttps: //www.uclg.org/en/media//8th-africities-summit-envisioning-future-african-region …

Our photo gallery of highlights herehttps: //www.flickr.com/photos/uclg/albums/72157702074771371 …

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“Where they see statistics and numbers, we see neighbors and people”, is usually heard in the corridors of the summit in reference to the man

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