Libreville, the capital of Gabon, hosted an extraordinary meeting of UCLG Africa’s Executive Committee on 26 July 2019. The meeting, convened on the initiative of the President of UCLG Africa, Mr. Léandre Nzue, Mayor of Libreville, was officially opened by the Prime Minister of Gabon: His Excellency Mr Julien Nkoghe Bekalé.
The sole purpose of the Executive Committee meeting (Extraordinary) was the Designation of candidates of Africa for the Presidency of the United Cities and Local Governments – World within the framework of the World Congress that will be held from 11 to 15 November 2019 in Durban, South Africa
For the nomination of the candidate for the position of UCLG World President, the members of the Executive Committee present used a vote to choose between the Moroccan candidature put forward by the Association of Presidents of Moroccan Communal Councils (AMPCC) and the South African candidature put forward by the National Association of South African Local Authorities (SALGA). At the end of the vote, the Moroccan candidate obtained a majority of votes.
Thus, the President of the AMPCC, Mr. Mohamed Boudra will be Africa’s candidate for the position of UCLG World President.
Concerning the nomination of Africa’s candidate for the post of UCLG Vice-President for Africa, the only candidate in the running was the Association of Municipalities of Burkina Faso (AMBF), represented by its President, Mr. Armand Béouindé.
Elections for the renewal bodies of UCLG are scheduled from 11 to 15 November 2019 in Durban, South Africa during the World Summit of Local and Regional Leaders.
The President of UCLG Africa, Mr. Léandre Nzue, invited all members to mobilise and support Morocco’s candidacy for the position of President of the world organization UCLG.
In Durban, Africa’s mission will be to repeat the achievement of 2016 in Bogota (Colombia), where it was first taken to the head of the world organization through its candidate Park Tau, then president of the National Association of Local Authorities of South Africa (SALGA).
The presentation of the Executive Committee of UCLG Africa is available here.
The High-level Political Forum is the United Nations body responsible for global review of progress towards the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The main theme of the 2019 Forum, held from 09-18 July at United Nations Headquarters in New York, was “Empowering People and Ensuring Inclusion and Equality”. It was discussed how to empower people and ensure inclusion and equality, while assessing overall progress in achieving the SDGs, with special attention to SDGs 8, 10, 13, 16 and 17.
It is in this context that the Secretary General of the United Nations, Mr. António Guterres, received in audience, a delegation of mayors of the world, which represented several networks, members of the Global Taskforce, including UCLG and the Network of Locally Elected Women in Africa (REFELA) of UCLG Africa. This delegation was led by the President of the world organization of UCLG, Mr Parks Tau with the participation of the President of REFELA, Mrs. Macoura Coulibaly Dao, Mayor of the commune of Foumbolo-Côte d’Ivoire, and of other mayors from Africa and other continents.
During this hearing, the Secretary General of the United Nations mentioned, among other things, the importance of the role of local authorities in localizing the 17 SDGs of the International Agenda, to “Empower people and ensure Inclusion and Equality”, as discussed in this High Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development of key actors to be considered for the implementation of the global development goals. The delegation received by the Secretary General of the UN was made up of elected officials.The challenge for the mayors present at this hearing and for the President of REFELA was to convince the UN Secretary General to give speaking time to UCLG, UCLG Africa, UCLG Africa’s Global task Force on Climate, and REFELA, at the United Nations General Assembly to draw attention be given to local authorities.
.Intervention of local elected officials :
The GLOBAL Taskforce could be a credible interlocutor. It is about moving governance mechanisms, by asking natioonal governments to consider the place of local authorities alongside them. The challenge is to unite forces and means of action to face challenges such as ecological emergencies, gender equality, poverty alleviation, educational development, the rebalancing of public policies, and global actions that today make people vulnerable.
Local authorities are at the forefront of meeting these challenges. They must have the means to act: recognizing their role and giving them a place in global governance would be an important step.
On behalf of REFELA, President Macoura Dao was able to send a strong message to the UN Secretary-General: “REFELA joins the various messages delivered by the representatives of networks of elected officials, and draws attention to the importance of the proximity of African women local elected representatives, to achieve the global goals. In addition, people should count on women mayors and female local elected representatives of Africa, grouped within REFELA, and on their determination to act for the implementation of SDGs 4, 5, 11 and 15. Women mayors and female elected officials propose to carry out three campaigns, (i) the campaign of African cities without street children; (ii) the campaign of African cities with zero tolerance for violence against women and girls; and (iii) the campaign of African cities for women’s economic empowerment; convinced that, if implemented, these campaigns would help make the cities and territories of Africa sustainable communities, where inhabitants – bothe male and female- would feel concretely the improvement of their living conditions. This is only possible with the improvement of the economic, social and political inclusion of women and the support of the international community “.
“Answer of the U.N. Secretary General: “You preach to a convinced, my wife is still a local elected official in Italy and I myself had local mandates … I understand the importance of the actions of local authorities and the specificity of their roles in the implementation of the SDGs. But this is a forum of national governments and I am not the only one to decide. It is obvious that some national governments are against putting local authorities in the limelight, but I support you … You must convince each of your natiopnal governments to take you in the official delegation … I congratulate REFELA: I know that women need support, and I will support you … ” »
The theme for this year’s European Development Days Conference #ThinkTwice focussed on addressing inequalities within the context of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. The partnership between UCLG Africa, Platforma, CEMR, AIMF, CLGF, and UCLG will, for the third year running, host a joint stand at The Global Village City Hall, representing local and regional governments at the European Development Days 2019 (EDD19).
Read more here
The statutory meetings of UCLG Africa in Cairo held from 17 to 21 June 2019 were marked by the installation of the new President of UCLG Africa namely Mr. Léandre Nzue, Mayor of Libreville (Gabon) and the election of Mrs Macoura Dao, as President of the Network of Locally Elected Women and Territorial Leaders of Africa (REFELA).
At the opening of the 20th session of the Executive Committee of UCLG Africa on 18 June, the members received the profession of faith from Mr. Léandre Nzue, who, in his capacity as newly elected Mayor of Libreville, was installed as the new President of UCLG Africa for the period 2019 to 2021, and therefore chaired this 20th session of the Executive Committee.
During his installation, the President of UCLG Africa undertook to encourage unity and dialogue, facilitate public and private investment, foster the integration of associations of local authorities for a better management of African cities by 2021.
On June 17, the first meeting of the Bureau of the Network of Locally Elected Women and Territorial Leaders of Africa (REFELA) was held. In accordance with REFELA’s Internal Regulations, Mrs. Dao Macoura, Mayor of Foumbolo in Côte d’Ivoire, Vice President of REFELA for the West African Region, was elected President of REFELA for the period 2019-2021, replacing Mrs. Célestine Ketcha-Courtes who became a member of the Government in Cameroon.
In her speech, Mrs. Dao recalled that REFELA’s leitmotif is to promote greater participation of women in the governance of local authorities and a better integration of women’s concerns into the policies pursued in our cities and territories;
The House of Representatives of the Marrakech Safi Region inaugurated, on 24 June 2019, the seminar “Territorial Action for Effective Decentralization” which brings together, until 30 June, in Marrakech, the African regions partners of the Marrakech Safi Region. On this occasion, Mr Ahmed Akhchichine, President of the Marrakech Safi Region and Mrs Aouatif Berdaï, Vice-President of the Municipality of Marrakech, demonstrated the commitment of the Marrakech Safi Region and the Municipality of Marrakech and affirmed the dynamic that unites them to the organizing committee of the African Capitals of Culture led by UCLG Africa (United Cities and Local Governments of Africa), to make Marrakech 2020 the first African Capital of Culture. The message is strong and clear: Marrakech is at the forefront of the development and strengthening of ties between Africa and Morocco and this ambition is demonstrated in the partnerships and opportunities that Marrakech and its Region can offer to Africa and Morocco.
During a visit to Marrakech City Hall, Mrs. Aouatif Berdai, Vice-President of the Municipality of Marrakech, introduced Marrakech 2020 and called on the delegations present to participate in the programme. During the discussions, a draft cooperation agreement between the Commune of Marrakech and the Commune of Agadez in Niger was put forward. The Municipality of Marrakech and the Region of Marrakech wish to make this Capital Year “a festive year for Africa, Morocco and Marrakech”. It’s in these terms that the President of the Marrakech Safi Region, Mr Ahmed Akhchichine, joins the invitation of the Municipality of Marrakech to ensure that the partner cities and territories of Marrakech and its Region join the Marrakech 2020 process and the African Capitals of Culture “For cities, territories and their civil societies, acting as a network in a continental dynamic, sustainable, inclusive and supportive”.
At the invitation of the Ministry of Local Development of the Arab Republic of Egypt, United Cities and Local Governments of Africa (UCLG Africa) held its first statutory meetings on 17 and 18 June 2019 at the Conrad Hotel in Cairo, Egypt, after the organization’s general assembly held in Marrakesh, Morocco, on 23 November 2018.
The statutory meetings of UCLG Africa included the first meeting of the Bureau of Women Elected and Leaders of Local and Subnational Governments in Africa (REFELA); and the 20th session of the Executive Committee of UCLGA Africa.
These meetings were officially opened by General Mahmoud Shaarawy, Minister of Local Development of Egypt, in the presence of General Khaled Abdel Aal, Governor of the Governorate of Cairo, and Mr Mohamed Boudra, Vice-President of UCLG Africa for the North Africa region.
The REFELA Bureau meeting reviewed and adopted the REFELA Action Plan for the period 2019-2021, focusing on its three main campaigns: the African Cities without Children on the Street Campaign; the African Cities with Zero Tolerance to All Forms of Violence against Women and Girls Campaign; and the African Cities Campaign for Women’s Economic Empowerment.
The meeting also elected a new President of REFELA in the person of Mrs Dao Macoura, Mayor of Foumbolo in Côte d’Ivoire, and Vice-President of REFELA for the West African region. Ms Macoura replaces Ms Célestine KETCHA, who has been appointed Minister of the Government of the Republic of Cameroon. The REFELA Bureau meeting also elected Mrs Mboula, épse Essame Elise Henriette, Mayor of Nkongsamba 3 Municipal District and President of the REFELA National Section in Cameroon, REFELA Vice-President for the Central African region.
The REFELA Bureau then congratulated and installed the REFELA national section in Egypt and its President, Mrs Manal Awad Mikhail, Governor, Governorate of Damietta (Egypt).
The REFELA Bureau also welcomed the proposal to include the members of the REFELA Bureau among the African candidates to be elected to the UCLG World Council at the next UCLG World Congress scheduled for 11-15 November 2019 in Durban, South Africa; and also to include the REFELA President among the African candidates to sit on the UCLG World Executive Bureau.
At the opening of the 20th session of the Executive Committee of UCLG Africa, the members first received the profession of faith from Mr Léandre Nzue, who, in his capacity as newly elected Mayor of Libreville, was installed as the new President of UCLG Africa for the period 2019 to 2021, and therefore chaired this 20th session of the Executive Committee.
The Executive Committee examined the organization’s financial reports, including the execution of the budget and the audited accounts for the 2018 financial year. He also invited members to honor their membership dues obligations in order to strengthen the organization and enable it to implement its action plan. At the end of these deliberations, the members of the Executive Committee approved the accounts and discharged the Secretary General for the management of the 2018 financial year.
The members of the Executive Committee then discussed the issue of UCLG Africa’s regional offices. The Secretary General informed that with the establishment of the North Africa Regional Office (NARO) in Cairo, scheduled to open on 19 June 2019, UCLG Africa should have completed the establishment of its regional offices by the end of 2019 as initially planned; except that the Regional Office for the Central African Region, which was supposed to be operational in Yaoundé, Cameroon, since 2015, has still not materialized despite several reminders.
The members of the Executive Committee appreciated Egypt’s offer to host the North Africa Regional Office (NARO) and welcomed the proposal to inaugurate the North Africa Regional Office (NARO) on 19 June 2019.
In order to comply with the initial plan to complete the establishment of the regional offices by the end of 2019, the President proposed that the Executive Committee consider the offer of the city of Libreville to host the Regional Office for Central Africa (CARO). This proposal was unanimously approved by the Executive Committee. The UCLG Africa Regional Office for Central Africa will now be established in Libreville, Gabon, with the responsibility for the Secretary General of UCLG Africa to take the necessary steps with the Gabonese authorities to formalize and implement this decision as soon as possible.
The members of the Executive Committee then discussed two other important issues: first, the organization of the next Africities Summit to be held in 2021 in Kisumu, Kenya; and Africa’s representation in the bodies of the World Organization of UCLG for the period 2020-2022.
Regarding Africities 2021, the Governor of Kisumu County, speaking on behalf of the Kenyan delegation led by the Minister of Devolution, presented the state of preparation of the 9th edition of the Africities Summit. The Committee welcomed the progress made so far in the preparations and the offer made by the President of the AMPCC of Morocco to assist the various Kenyan teams to better prepare for the Summit if they so wish.
With regard to Africa’s representation in UCLG’s World bodies, and in accordance with the requirement that, to be eligible, any list of candidates for UCLG bodies must have at least 30 per cent women, the Executive Committee has nominated 45 candidates from Africa to sit on the UCLG World Council, and 15 candidates from Africa to sit on the UCLG World Executive Board.
The Executive Committee then deliberated on the representation of Africa at the level of the UCLG Presidency, first for the nomination of Africa’s candidate for the post of Vice President Africa of UCLG, and for the merits for Africa to stand for the post of World President of UCLG. This discussion follows the appointment of the current President of UCLG, Mr. Parks Tau as Deputy Minister in the Government of South Africa, which means that he can no longer run for a second term as World President of UCLG. However, the custom observed so far in UCLG management is that each region presides over UCLG for two successive terms. On the basis of the observed track record, the Executive Committee decided that Africa would nominate a candidate for the position of UCLG World President at the next UCLG World Congress scheduled for 11-15 November 2019 in Durban, South Africa. Consultations will continue between members to agree on the name of the African candidate for the position of Vice-President Africa of UCLG, and on the name of the African candidate for the position of World President of UCLG. These consultations should be completed in the next few weeks and no later than 15 July 2019.
Finally, the members of the Executive Committee welcomed the establishment of the Africa Territorial Agency, a financial institution designed to raise funds on the financial market to direct them towards investments within African cities and territories. In this regard, they encouraged cities and territories to subscribe to the cooperative society created for this purpose, and called on African governments to support this initiative.
The members of the Executive Committee also approved the takeover of the African Capitals of Culture program by UCLG Africa, whose first celebration will e held in Marrakesh in 2020/2021.
The members of the Executive Committee finally agreed that UCLG Africa should be involved in the Door of Our Return initiative launched by the Afro-Descendants of the Americas and asked the Secretary General to take necessary steps tp make this involvement a reality.
Within the framework and following of the meetings of UCLG Africa’s bodiesan international Conference was also organized from 18 to 20 June 2019 at the Conrad Hotel in Cairo, under the High Patronage of the President of the Arab Republic of Egypt, His Excellency Mr. Abdel Fattah al-Sissi, on the theme: “African Cities: Engines of Sustainable Development”. The following collaborated in the organization of this Conference: the Ministry of Local Development of Egypt, UCLG Africa, UN Habitat, and the European Union.
This Conference was officially opened by the Prime Minister of Egypt, Dr. Mostafa Madbouli, and was attended by a large number of Ministers from the Government of Egypt; members of the Bureau of the Specialized Technical Committee of the African Union (STC 8) comprising African Ministers of Public Service, Urban Development and Housing, Decentralization and Local Governments; members of the Executive Committee of UCLG Africa and the REFELA Bureau; representatives of civil society organizations and academia; and representatives of development partners.
Attached are the conclusions of the Conference proceedings presented by the Minister of Local Development of Egypt. The final report of this Conference will be released in due course.
Cairo, 21 June 2019
The Secretary General of UCLG Africa
IFRANE’S CALL TO ACTION FOR THE MOBILIZATION AND IMPLEMENTATION OF INNOVATIVE AND SUSTAINABLE FINANCING FOR TRAINING AND CAPACITY BUILDING OF LOCAL ELECTED OFFICIALS
AND HUMAN RESOURCES OF AFRICAN LOCAL GOVERNMENTS
We, Representatives of Local Governments and Training Institutes involved in the process of Decentralization, Local Governance and Local Development, meeting from 10 to 14 in Ifrane, Morocco, on the occasion of the 3rd Edition of the African Forum of Territorial Managers and Training Institutes Targeting Local Governments
(FAMI), organized by the African Local Governments Academy(ALGA) of the United Cities and Local Governments of Africa (UCLG Africa), on the theme: “Financing learning, training and capacity building for local elected officials and local human resources in Africa: for innovative and sustainable mechanisms”;
– Launch a Solemn Appeal to the decision-makers at local, national, panAfrican and international levels to make the issue of the Human Capital of Local Governments, Authorities and Administrations one of the main priorities in
the implementation of Decentralization policies, the domestication and localization of the African Union Agenda 2063, as well as the Global Agendas, adopted by the United Nations, in particular Agenda 2030 of the Sustainable
Development Goals, the Paris Agreement on Climate Change, and the New Urban Agenda.
– It should be recalled that weak capacities are a serious obstacle to the achievement and success of Decentralization, to the achievement of sustainable development and to the anchoring of Good Governance at the territorial level.
– Call on decision-makers to comply with the guidelines and directives adopted at the pan-African and international levels to rethink their action regarding the priority given to the development of Human Capital within local and regional governments and authorities.
– The African Union’s Vision 2063 “The Africa we want”, in paragraph 14, emphasizes the following: “Africa’s Human Capital will be fully developed as the most precious resource, including through sustained investments based on universality in early childhood and basic education, and also through sustained investments in higher education, science, technology, research and innovation, and the elimination of inequalities between men and women at all levels of education.
Access to higher education will be expanded and strengthened by providing modern world-class learning and research infrastructures to support the scientific reforms that underpin the continent’s transformation”.
– The Resolution adopted by the United Nations General Assembly on 20 December 2017, No. 72/235 on Human Resources Development, commits the international community to place human resources development at the heart of sustainable development in its three dimensions, economic, social and environmental; and on the other hand, to develop short-, medium- and long-term strategies to effectively improve capacity in this area, as sustained, shared and equitable economic growth and development are not possible without an educated, skilled, healthy, competent, productive and adaptable workforce”.
On this basis, we recommend the following in the context of strengthening the Human Capital of local and regional authorities in Africa:
1. Define an appropriate legal framework that establishes the right to lifelong learning for local elected officials and human resources of local and regional governments and authorities in Africa.
2. Promote employment within Africa’s Territorial Administrations as one of the first options in the career choice of young people entering the labour market by putting in place adequate incentive frameworks and community human resource planning methods adapted to the contexts of the different communities.
3. Implement innovative and sustainable mechanisms for financing training, capacity building, and empowering for local and regional governments and authorities in Africa, in particular by establishing a levy of 1 to 5 per cent of the wage bill paid to local and regional authority staff, to be devoted to training, capacity building and empowering local elected officials, managers and other staff of these territorial and local institutions, taking into account national contexts and the diversity of the financing mechanisms and models involved.
4. Establish at national level, an autonomous institution responsible for the organization and management of training and capacity building for local and regional governments and authorities in Africa, the management of which should be as joint as possible, integrating into its management the national administrations responsible for the civil service and employment, local and regional authorities and decentralization, as well as the National Association of Local and Regional Authorities and the representatives of local and regional authorities’ executives and staff. This autonomous institution would collect and manage the amount of the levy on the payroll of local authorities to ensure training and capacity building for local governments and authorities.
5. Establish a National Observatory of Human Resources of Local Governments and Authorities with the participation of training institutes and academia to encourage Public Authorities to adopt human resources management standards, and a culture of comparative performance in the management of territorial administrations in Africa. Information from the various national observatories should be able to feed into the African Observatory on Human Resources of Local Authorities developed at the level of the African Local Governments Academy(ALGA) of the United Cities and Local Governments of Africa (UCLG Africa).
Let us commit ourselves to promoting this call to Action for Human Capital of Africa’s Local and Regional Governments and Authorities, and the implementation of its recommendations.
Done at Ifrane, on Thursday 13 June 2019
The Participants in the 3rd African Forum of Territorial Managers and Training
Institutes targeting the Local Government
The first meeting of the Bureau of the Network of Locally Elected Women and Territorial Leaders of Africa (REFELA), was held on June 17, 2019, in Cairo, Egypt. The meeting was officially opened by Mr. Mahmoud Shaarawy, Minister of Local Development of Egypt, in the presence of Mrs. Manal Awad, Governor of Damietta; Mrs. Fatna El Khiel, Secretary of State for Housing in Morocco and Vice-President of North Africa for REFELA; Mr. Mohamed Boudra, Vice-President of UCLG Africa for North Africa; and Mr. Jean Pierre Elong Mbassi, Secretary General of UCLG Africa.
The meeting’s agenda included:
– The adoption of REFELA’s three-year work plan for the period 2019-2021;
– The participation of REFELA members in the UCLG World Congress, to be held from
November 11-15, 2019 in Durban, South Africa;
– The election of the President of REFELA;
– The election of the Vice President of REFELA for the Central Africa Region;
– The installation of the national chapter of REFELA in Egypt.
The REFELA Three-Year Plan for the period 2019-2021 provides for:
– The broadening of the implementation of REFELA national chapters in all African countries.
– The launch of activities of the three campaigns adopted by the Network’s General Assembly
at the Africities Summit held in Marrakech, Morocco in November 2018, namely: (1) The
campaign for African Cities without Street Children, sponsored by Princess Lalla Meryem of
Morocco; (2) the campaign for African Cities’ Zero Tolerance to Violence Against Women
and Girls; and (3) the campaign for African cities in favor of women’s economic
empowerment and female leadership;
– The elaboration of the Charter of Local and Regional Authorities for Gender Equality in
- The mobilization of funding for the implementation of activities provided for REFELA’s Three-Year Plan (2019-2021).
REFELA had 23 national chapters at the close of 2018. The objective is to increase this figure to 36 by the end of 2020 and to have chapters in all African countries by the end of 2021.
In order to comply with the requirements to include at least 30 per cent of women on the lists of candidates for the UCLG World Council, it has been proposed to include the 15 members of the REFELA Executive Board amongst the 45 candidates that Africa intends to present to sit on the UCLG World Council for the period 2020-2022.
In accordance with REFELA’s Internal Regulations, Mrs. Dao Macoura, Mayor of Foumbolo in Côte d’Ivoire, Vice President of REFELA for the West African Region, was elected President of REFELA for the period 2019-2021, replacing Mrs. Célestine Ketcha-Courtes who became a member of the Government in Cameroon. Mrs. Mboula, wife Essame Elise Henriette, was elected Vice President of REFELA for the Central African Region for the same period.
The REFELA Bureau installed the national chapter of REFELA in Egypt, whose President is Mrs. Manal Awad, Governor of Damietta.
In her inaugural speech as President of REFELA, Mrs. Dao stated:
“First of all, let me thank the people and authorities of Egypt for the quality of the welcome we have received since our arrival in Cairo. I would particularly like to thank His Excellency the President of the Republic of Egypt and convey to him the sincere congratulations of the Network of Locally Elected Women of Africa for his brilliant election as President of the African Union. I would also like to thank the Egyptian government for encouraging and supporting the establishment of a national chapter of REFELA in Egypt (…) I would like to recall that the leitmotif of REFELA is to promote greater participation of women in the governance of local authorities and a better integration of women’s concerns into the policies pursued in our cities and territories (…) The statutes of UCLG Africa stipulate that wherever there is a national association of local authorities, the national chapter of REFELA must be considered as the permanent “Gender Equality” commission of the said national association. The fact that Egypt has accepted the establishment of a national chapter of REFELA reassures us of Egypt’s willingness to take better account of women’s place and concerns in the governance of Egypt’s cities and territories. We would like to congratulate the women leaders and members of the territorial assemblies of Egypt for this noble initiative and assure them of the constant support of the REFELA Executive Board.”
REFELA Egypt was officially installed by the new President of REFELA, Mrs. Macoura Coulibaly Dao; Mrs. Fatna El Khiel, Secretary of State for Housing in Morocco and Vice-President of North Africa for REFELA; and Mr. Mohamed Boudra, Vice-President of UCLG Africa for North Africa. They congratulated its President, Mrs. Manal Awad, Governor of Damietta, for the extraordinary work accomplished since the 8th Africities Summit in Marrakech, November 2018, to unite Egyptian women leaders from local authorities within REFELA Egypt.
Dr. Maya Mosi, President of the National Council of Women of Egypt, has made commitments to improve the representation of women on the executives of Egypt’s governorates and in all elected councils of Egyptian cities and local authorities, following the example of other African countries.
To mark the event organized in Cairo, Mrs. Chrystel Limbourg Iwenga, 2nd Deputy Mayor of Libreville in Gabon, President of UCLG Africa, presented a memoire on behalf of all the women mayor leaders and local elected representatives of Africa, to the President of REFELA, Mrs. Macoura Coulibaly Dao; Mrs Fatna El Khiel, Secretary of State for Housing in Morocco and Vice-President of North Africa for REFELA; Dr. Maya Mosi, President of the National Council of Women of Egypt, and Mrs. Manal Awad, Governor of Damiette, President of REFELA-Egypt.
For further information, please contact:
Gaëlle Yomi: Tel: + 212 610 56 71 45
In a holistic approach, based on the Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development Goals signed in 2015 by 193 countries and its 17 objectives (SDGs), UCLG Africa wishes to propose to its members and their regional, national and international partners, a program entitled: African Capitals of Culture
African Capitals of Culture is positioning itself as a strategic tool for African local and regional governments, to support cities and their rural constituents in responding to the challenges posed by the six areas of transition set out at the 8th Africities Summit (Marrakech 2018). African Capitals of Culture reflects the sustainable development goals recounted at the international summits of the African Union and the United Nations.
The establishment of African Capitals of Culture aims to:
• Structure, empower and network with the cultural and creative actors of the African continent;
• Develop public and private ecosystems that will make them culturally independent and economically autonomous, sustainable and viable.
The ambition of African Capitals of Culture is to affirm and promote the continent’s cultural identity and the cultural re-appropriation of Africa, by and for themselves.
Africa is the cradle of humanity. Its unparalleled cultural depth has faded. It is time to revive and regain pride in it.
Africa is the key to the future. In all areas of transition it faces issues crucial to the future of humanity and the future shape of its civilizations. These problems are of an unprecedented complexity, which is why Africa cannot borrow its solutions from anyone.
Celebrating African culture through a network of capitals means encouraging and organizing these solutions, through its youth, with a unique vitality and the singular urban cultures it gives rise to. It means restoring to Africans the awareness and control of their creative power and their destiny. Cities, with the fabric of the regional areas they create, are at the level of action that makes it possible to articulate a proximity policy and a global affirmation strategy.
Every three years, the Organizing Committee of African Capitals of Culture will highlight the creativity of the continent through its cities, not only of the city declared as the capital.
An African Capital of Culture city celebrates Africa and Africa celebrates it. The event is not solely reserved for the chosen city, but opens up to pan-African programing and the visibility of creative initiatives from other cities on the continent. All African cities, local and regional governments can therefore be partners.
The partners of an African Capital of Culture city will be able to support artists and creators from their territory, every three years. Partners in other development programs will also network with the continent’s talents and cities. In the interval between two African Capitals of Culture, the organizing committee will support the development of nine programmatic axes. The Committee’s action is therefore permanent, based on a public/private model, both in terms of structuring initiatives and financing.
AN AFRICAN CAPITAL OF CULTURE
The Organizing Committee of African Capitals of Culture may:
• Provide cities, interested in the African Capital of Culture label, with expertise and advice, in order to prepare their future applications by first, developing the necessary creative fabric.
• Provide cities and local and regional governments, wishing to increase their specific creative potential, with targeted advice, and connect them, where appropriate, with model operators in the sector concerned;
• Integrate their operators, administrative and elected officials into training programs and workshops;
• Integrate, after examining motivations and projects, artistic and creative initiatives into the multi-year programs managed by the organizing committee and, in this case, support their funding;
• Support the financing of the arrival of artists, creators and projects led by African local and regional governments;
• Include representatives of local and regional authorities in the discussions on cultural and creative policies.
Cultural development is not in vain: it generates many benefits. African Capitals of Culture is a program promoted at the international level. The impact, in terms of image and visibility, is significant. The tourism and economic benefits are equally important.
Participating in the momentum of African Capitals of Culture also makes it possible to structure its territory, to think strategically about urban development, to involve populations and to offer them both general and concrete perspectives: to build employment, create, reactivate or develop sectors adapted to the assets of the territory, and to connect its active youth to the dynamics of the continent.
Cities and local and regional governments can contribute to the action of the organizing committee and to the success of this great ambition for Africa:
• By relaying the institutional and general communication of the organizing committee.
• By pointing out the creative initiatives of their territories;
• By formally becoming a partner of the organizing committee;
• By providing multi-year financial and/or logistical support for projects in its territory selected by the organizing committee, which will provide additional funding;
• By providing financial and/or logistical support for artistic, cultural and creative projects to be presented as part of an African Capital of Culture, with the organizing committee and its partners providing additional funding where appropriate;
• By declaring and preparing its application, in liaison with the organizing committee, to become the next African Capital of Culture.
BACKGROUND AND GOVERNANCE
At the instigation of Jean Pierre Elong Mbassi, General Secretary of UCLG Africa, meetings involving experts have been taking place since 2017. These have led to the development of a project framework, since the spring of 2018, and to the decision to present a program, “African Capitals of Culture,” initiated during the Africities 8 summit held in Marrakech.
On November 22, 2018, at the 8th Africities Summit, the Honorary President of African Capitals of Culture, Jean Pierre Elong Mbassi, along with the Chairman of the Organizing Committee of the African Capitals of Culture, Adama Traoré, and the President of the Marrakech Commune, Mohamed Larbi Belcaid, formalized the birth of African Capitals of Culture and declared Marrakech as the first African Capital of Culture.
February 22, 2019: African Capitals of Culture and the Marrakech Commune signed the Marrakech 2020 Convention’s African Capital of Culture. The first edition of African Capitals of Culture will take place from January 1 to December 31, 2020.
The organizing committee of African Capitals of Culture, is piloted by a steering committee, a high council and an operational committee
The steering committee validates the general orientation of African Capitals of Culture and represents the organizing committee to public and private bodies. Chaired by Mr. Adama Traoré who appointed Mr. Khalid Tamer as its General Manager, the steering committee includes personalities recognized for their expertise and capacity for action, as well as representatives of major public organizations, in particular: Mr. Jean Pierre Elong Mbassi, as representative of UCLG Africa.
The High Council brings together those recognized for their independence and for their knowledge of the continent’s issues. It is responsible for ensuring respect for the fundamental values that will guide the actions of African Capitals of Culture and to encourage deep reflection of the issues.
The operational committee relays the decisions and the vision of the steering committee. It associates with representatives from the host cities editions, the chairman of the committee of sponsors and major public partners associated with the operations for African Capitals of Culture funding as well as monitoring large blocks of programs.
The organizing committee has the opportunity to tap into a resource pool of consultants, disciplinary specialists to enrich its thinking, and potentially feed the programing of an edition.