The Executive Director, Mrs. Anna Tibaijuka, recently received the letters of accreditation from two new Permanent Representatives to UN-HABITAT. They are: the Permanent Representative of Greece, Mr. Dimitri-Michael Loundra; and his Ghanaian counterpart, Mr. Yaw Konadu Yiadom.
Briefing the Greek envoy on the activities of UN-HABITAT in his country, Mrs. Tibaijuka noted that on 27-28 November 2008 the organization held an “Expert Group Meeting on Land Tools for Legal Integration and Provision of Environmental Improvements in Informal Settlements in Europe.”
The meeting was held in Athens, Greece. She expressed the hope that in future UN-HABITAT would enhance cooperation with the Government of Greece and other stakeholders in the country.
(l-r): Mrs. Anna Tibaijuka and Mr. Dimitri-Michael Loundra.
Mrs. Tibaijuka thanked the Government of Greece for the support it had lent to UN-HABITAT so far and appealed for even greater support as Greece is a developed country. She stated that the organization was looking for focal points in various countries.
In his response, Mr. Loundra gave the assurance that he would do his best to foster the good relations between his country and UN-HABITAT.
In her discussion with the Ghanaian envoy, the Executive Director stated that the second phase of the Water for Africa Cities (WAC) programme in Sabon Zongo was in progress, and noted that the design stage of the Slum Upgrading Facility (SUF) in Tema/Ashaiman and in Sekondi/Takoradi was complete. She also stated that the Ghana Women Land and Asset Trust (Gawlat) has been set up as a housing cooperative in the capital city, Accra, and that UN-HABITAT was working with the World Bank and other institutions to establish an urban policy mechanism for the country.
(l-r): Mrs. Anna Tibaijuka and Mr. Yaw Konadu Yiadom.
The Executive Director further informed the new Permanent Representative that there are at present twelve civil society organizations from Ghana with working relations with UN-HABITAT and were accredited to the Habitat II Conference. Some of the organizations, she noted, assist in building low-cost houses.
Responding, Mr. Yiadom commended UN-HABITAT for the good work it is doing globally and pledged his country’s support for the organization’s activities. “By helping UN-HABITAT, we are also helping ourselves,” he said. The Ghanaian envoy was accompanied by the country’s Honorary Counsel to Kenya, Mr. Chris Kirubi.
Mrs. Tibaijuka presented the envoys with some flagship publications of the organization.