Anna Tibaijuka, Executive Director of UN-HABITAT, this week paid a courtesy call on the Kenyan Minister for Local Government, Hon. Emmanuel Karisa Maitha.
He thanked Tibaijuka for the continued support of UN-HABITAT in Kenya and commended it for numerous projects, such as UN-HABITAT’s work on safer cities and crime prevention, managing water for African cities, and its guidance on decentralisation and local democracy.
He said that in the month the newly elected Kenyan government had been in power, it had already moved on number of fronts. Street children were being rehabilitated and local authorities were working on how best to manage street hawkers. However, the Minister pointed out that this was just the beginning and much needed to be done to improve the living conditions within the city and especially those of the urban poor. He called on UN-HABITAT to help the government with training and capacity building in all areas of urban governance and slum upgrading. The Assistant Minister for Local Government, Hon. Betty Tett, also emphasised the urgent need for support in rehabilitating street children and AIDS orphans.
Tibaijuka said she would support all efforts by the government to improve, the kenyan capital, Nairobi. As the home of UN-HABITAT, she had a personal commitment to seeing the city succeed. She presented him Kiswahili language version of UN-HABITAT's training material on “Leadership and management skills for local government elected officials”, and opies of the UN-HABITAT's publication, “Building bridges between citizens and local governments”. Tibaijuka met separately with the new Kenyan Minister for Education, Science and Technology, Hon. Professor George Saitoti.