As part of its strategy for achieving sustainable development in Africa, the New Partnership for Africa's Development (NEPAD) aims to address urbanization and its consequences in order to make African cities more attractive for economic investment. The UN/NEPAD Cluster on Environment, Population and Urbanization formulated the NEPAD City Programme in February 2003 with UN-HABITAT as the lead agency. A NEPAD City is one that is functional, economically productive, socially inclusive, environmentally sound, safe, healthy and secure. In direct response to the need for regional integration and creation of a critical mass for profitable investment, the NEPAD City is one that has strong rural linkages and a symbiotic relationship with its hinterland and beyond. Seven cities were selected to start off the programme in July 2003: Bamako, Douala, Durban, Lagos, Lusaka, Nairobi and Rabat. The profiles of these cities were prepared by their respective municipalities with technical assistance from UN-HABITAT. The profiles were discussed intensively by all mayors of these cities at the First NEPAD City Consultative Forum held in Lagos in May 2004. Depending on the funding situation, these priority areas will form the main focus for development intervention in the second phase of the programme proposed to start in January 2005. Activities
The first phase of the programme was marked by the following activities:
- Development of a concept and criteria for selection of first seven cities, which were approved by the Heads of State and Governments Implementation Committee of NEPAD;
- Establishing contact with the focal ministries in charge of Housing and Urban Development, Lands, Local Government, Planning, Finance and Foreign Affairs of the seven countries concerned;
- Organizing a roundtable on the programme at the Africities 3 in Yaounde, Cameroon;
- Preparing the terms of reference and recruiting national consultants to support the municipalities in developing their city profiles;
- Conducting a consultative forum of the seven cities in Lagos, Nigeria, and identifying priority areas for intervention in each city;
- Establishing a framework for a NEPAD Cities Award. It is expected that this will form part of the African Peer Review Mechanism;
- Establishing Committee of Mayors to supervise the Award.
- A framework profile of each of the seven cities has been prepared.
- The message of NEPAD is gradually percolating to the municipal and community levels.
- The progress of the NEPAD City Programme was integrated into the Chairman's report to the African Union in July 2004.
- A Committee of NEPAD Mayors has been set up.
- More cities, including Addis Ababa, have requested to join the programme.
- A report of the Lagos Forum marking the end of the first phase of the programme is being published.