“The Participatory Slum Upgrading Programme (PSUP) process is not an end to all urban poverty, but an important contribution and a process to be complemented by other poverty alleviation programmes,” said one country representative at the PSUP Side Event.
The side event on “Sustainable Urban Development through the Participatory Slum Upgrading Programme in African, Caribbean and Pacific Countries” held during the 23rd Session of the UN-HABITAT Governing Council, brought together participants from all PSUP regions. The participants, who filled the room to capacity, were eager to share their experiences in slum upgrading and prevention, and were also keen on continuing the implementation with its different phases in their respective countries.
During the side event, key issues stood out as major factors to the success of the programme implementation process, such as the re-organization of the land management system, provision of land tenure for slum dwellers, and more comprehensive buy-in or ownership building to the programme by national and local governments which leads to the replication in more urban centers and an increased funding for slum upgrading. This is demonstrated for example by the Government of Senegal and Cameroon, both highlighted in their intervention financial contributions to the programme for implementing slum upgrading activities and replicating the approach in other cities.
The participants also praised the programme for its enhancement of participatory governance and inclusiveness, which ensured that everybody from local authorities, technical institutions, local entrepreneurs, and slum dwellers or civil society organisations were implicated in the implementation process “even the market women”, one participant added.
“It is important that we avoid a one size fits all approach when trying to find solutions to the urban poverty challenge, and look for tailor made solutions that will suit the needs of different countries,” said the Programme Manager, Mr. Dodou Mbye, in conclusion to the event.