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Dangiwa Meets Group of African Members of the UN Habitat Executive Board

Says Nigeria’s Chairmanship will Ensure Strategic Direction for UN Habitat, etc 

Nairobi, Kenya – On May 7th, 2024, the Honourable Minister of Housing and Urban Development and Chair of the UN-Habitat Executive Board, Arc. Ahmed Musa Dangiwa, engaged in a critical meeting with the Africa Group, representing 10 countries, on the sidelines of the first session of the 2024 UN-Habitat Executive Board Meeting in Nairobi, Kenya.

At the meeting, Arc. Dangiwa outlined the key priorities for Nigeria’s leadership of the Executive Board, as identified during the recent Retreat of the Regional Group of African States in Naivasha, Kenya. These priorities include:

1.    Promoting increased strategic direction for UN-Habitat by promoting the balance between the organisation’s Mandate, the available global opportunities as well as within the United Nations Wide System and the quest for increased Resources.

2.    Regular and ongoing caucusing for the benefit of the continent. Under this, he said Nigeria will call for a Ministerial Caucus, and subsidiary technical fora of the Africa Group on Human Settlements in line with the African Union Specialised Technical Committee On Public Service, Local Government, Urban Development And Decentralisation (AU-STC 8).

3.    Enhanced global collaboration and engagement. He noted that Nigeria will also be working towards increased global collaboration through engagement both in consultation with Nairobi based delegations and Capitals. This will include engagements with stakeholders from other regions. Nigeria will also be calling for a platform for Ministerial Collaboration of Members of the Executive Board and would be glad to drive the agenda through the Africa Group.

4.    Strengthened due diligence to maximize benefits and protect the organization’s mandate. He noted that Nigeria commits to enhancing due diligence to UN-Habitat activities to ensure that the continent achieves increased benefits for its engagement within UN-Habitat in particular and the UN system in general, as well as to protect the organization from possible erosion of its mandate.

Furthermore, the Honourable Minister highlighted additional continental priorities, including the celebration of UN-Habitat’s 50th anniversary, the development of a new strategic plan, and the promotion of African-grown initiatives.

Arc. Dangiwa expressed gratitude to Her Excellency Dr. Vivian Nain Kuma of Cameroon, Chair of the Africa Group, for convening the meeting, and expressed appreciation to all attending delegations for their commitment to the cause. He emphasized the importance of sustained and purposeful engagement in matters of human settlements, acknowledging the pivotal role played by the Africa Group in advocating for the continent’s interests.

Dr. Vivian Nain Kuma, in her response, congratulated Nigeria and the Hon. Minister for assuming the position of Chair of UN-Habitat as Africa’s representative. She pledged, on behalf of members of the Group, that they will work to support his agenda and ensure the success of his tenure as Chair. She encouraged the Hon. Minister to champion strategic collaboration with the Shelter Afrique Development as part of efforts to raise concessional finance to solve the continent’s housing and urban development challenges.

The meeting featured a presentation by the Managing Director of Shelter Afrique Development Bank (ShafDB), Mr. Thierno-Habib Hann, who spoke on the need for strategic collaboration between the institution and UN-Habitat, especially since they share similar objectives and a unique Board leadership under Arc. Ahmed Musa Dangiwa. Such a partnership, he said, will help unlock concessional funding necessary to meet the continent’s housing and urban development needs.

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Written by Micheal

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