The second international conference on sustainable urbanization which began yesterday will propose solutions to challenging urban developmen.
In Cameroon, just like in other African countries, it is common to see slum neighbourhoods which are heavily populated urban areas characterized by substandard housing, inadequate access to clean water and sanitation, and a constantly changing residential population. As of 2012, some 863 million people lived in slums in the name of homes.
But, the negative impacts that result from slums are alarming. They affect everything about a community, from education to natural disasters. That is why the international community and the government of Cameroon in particular, has not been indifferent in seeking solutions for a sustainable urbanization.
It is within this backdrop that the second international conference on sustainable urbanization in Canada, China and Africa (ICCCASU II) began yesterday in Yaounde. ICCCASU II will be one of the major events happening after the adoption of the New Urban Agenda by the United Nations.
ICCCASU II is bringing together researchers and policymakers from the public and private sectors as well as from the civil society to interrogate the challenges of urban development in Canada, China and Africa, with special emphasis on Cameroon. The conference will assess the impact of local and global challenges on sustainable urban development and identify mechanisms that may or should be set in motion to improve local and global urban governance.
The conference, which ends tomorrow, will provide a platform for discussing urban challenges in Canada, China and in African countries and will find ways of slashing urban poverty, inequalities while promoting inclusive and sustainable governance and combating climate changes.
The conference will give way to post-conference working tours under the theme; "Smart urban development: from local to global actions." As such, sub-themes such as cities and climate changes, socio-technological innovations, urban and community dynamics, housing and slum upgrading and land tenure issues shall come under scrutiny.
Knowing that cities are seen as both the source of and solution to today's economic, environmental and social challenges, experts at the Yaounde ICCCASU II conference hope to support the government of Cameroon to craft a national urban policy alongside its implementation plan as well as contribute to the setting up of the first international center of excellence for training and research in the building of sustainable cities and achievement of sustainable urbanizations in sub-Saharan Africa.