The number of those living in slums has reduced considerably for the past 12 years.
According to a report by the United Nations, urban residents in the developing countries living in slums have reduced from 39 per cent in 2000 to 33 per cent in 2012.
The Millennium Development Goals Report 2012 also records improvement in the sanitation facilities in the slums, pointing out that more than 200 million people have gained access to either improved water sources, improved sanitation facilities or less crowded housing.
“This achievement exceeds the target of significantly improving the lives of at least 100 million slum dwellers,” states the report. The report, compiled by UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs, also points at significant enrolment in schools especially among the girls. In 1999, there were 91 girls per 100 boys enrolled in primary schools compared to 97 girls per 100 boys in 2010.
“The world has achieved another milestone: parity in primary education between girls and boys. Driven by national and international efforts, more of the world’s children are enrolled in school at the primary level, especially since 2000,” the report outlines.
The enrolment rates have significantly improved in Sub-Saharan Africa from 58 per cent in 1999 to 76 per cent in 2010.
“Many countries in the region have succeeded in reducing their relatively high out-of-school rates even as their primary school age populations were growing,” the report states.
Gains were also made on those getting access to anti-retroviral therapy for HIV and Aids with 6.5 million people in the developing world receiving the drugs at the end of 2010.
“These results represent a tremendous reduction in human suffering and are a clear validation of the approach embodied in the MDGs. But, they are not a reason to relax,” UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said in the report’s foreword. Ki Moon noted that projections indicate that in 2015, more than 600 million people worldwide will still lack access to safe drinking water.
By PETER OPIYO
- Salva Kiir sacks top South Sudan officials
- Lawyer wants Chinedu to appear in court
- Maji marefu’s futile effort to find stolen property
- Can chickens really be cleverer than a toddler? Studies suggest animals can master numeracy and basic engineering
- Freedom of media under threat in Eastern Africa
- Rapid desertification in Kenya threatening livelihood