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Africities Summit: President Uhuru calls on need to make cities more habitable

By Betty Njeru | May 17th 2022 | 2 min read

Preparations at Mamboleo in readiness for the 9th Africities Summit to be held in Kisumu. [Michael Mute, Standard]

President Uhuru Kenyatta has officiated the opening ceremony of the ninth Africities summit in Kisumu County today.

Kenyatta, in his speech before the over 4,000 delegates, called for the need to make African cities more sustainable, saying that the continent is becoming increasingly urban.

“This summit comes at a critical time when Africa is facing rapid urbanisation. Intermediary cities in Africa are home to approximately 174 million people representing about 36 per cent of the continent’s population and contribute about 40 per cent of our continent's GDP,” the Head of State averred.

Uhuru added that it was equally important for African cities to unleash their full potential, in line with the implementation of the United Nations Agenda 2030 and the African Union Agenda 2063.

“Time is ripe for scaling up the role of intermediary cities as the next frontiers of African urbanisation and development.”

Uhuru is presiding over the event being held in Kisumu County, the first intermediary city to host the summit.

The conference, expected to host over 10,000 delegates will run from today, May 17 to May 21, 2022, whose focus today is on climate action.

Reiterating the impact of climate change in our lives, African Union Chairperson Moussa Faki said there is need to better define and clarify the role of intermediary cities.

“The growth of intermediary cities implies an increase in wealth, inequalities, need for housing, infrastructure, and urban services, and need for decent jobs,”

The summit held every three years over a five-day period has brought together officials from the United Nations, African Union, United Cities and Local Govts of Africa (UCGL), members of the diplomatic core, and senior government officials including governors and cabinet secretaries.

Kenya hosted the summit again in 2006 under the local governments.  

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