The President of the South African Local Government Association (SALGA), Cllr Parks Tau, has been elected President of the United Cities and Local Government (UCLG), the umbrella body for local governments around the world.


The election took place at the 5th UCLG Congress World Summit of Local and Regional Leaders, in Colombia’s capital city of Bogotá. For Local Governments, this world body is the equivalent of the United Nations, comprising over 1000 leading cities and virtually all of the local government associations in the world. Together, its members represent over half of the world’s total population.

Winning the Presidency, whose term of office is for a period of three years, is a milestone for the African continent and South Africa. Africa is chair for the first time the presidency of the organisation.

The Presidency will provide a platform for South Africa, the African continent and the entire local government fraternity to drive the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG), the Paris Accord on Climate Change, the New Urban Agenda (Habitat III), together with the Addis Ababa Action Agenda and the Sendai Framework on Disaster Risk Reduction.  His plan is clear, namely to shape a more sustainable, inclusive and just future.

Importantly, President Parks Tau will be at the helm, creating sustainable partnerships with business, civil society, innovation institutions and international multilateral organisations, to access global partners for development.

We are ready. We have demonstrated our cohesion and that we can work together as a continent. It is not somebody doing us a favour. We are active and leading members of the world body, UCLG,” said President Tau.

President Tau is a globally recognised and experienced leader in local government, a fact confirmed by his nomination and supported by a cross section of regions including Africa, South America, North America, Europe, Metropolis, C40, Commonwealth and more than 110 cities across regions of UCLGA and key cities in the MEWA region, Asia Pacific and Euro Asia.

President Parks Tau, a leader with humility, tried and tested, a unifier and an agent of change who will propel UCLG forward.

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