(Sec Activity) Exchange Workshop: Lessons and experiences on the challenges of urbanization and city governance - Luanda/Angola
Angola mirrors the current global trend in urbanisation with over 62% of the country’s population living in cities. Like in other regions of the world, urban population growth has brought with it challenges of poverty, unemployment, inequality and social exclusion, and insecurity. Opportunities are also evident in the parallel growth of the national economy and the expectations of local governance reforms, decentralisation and the new rolls for municipalities. International good practice shows that governments have increasingly built effective partnerships with civil society and learned from the experience of other cities and regions. Cities Alliance is a global institution which aims to promote these good practices and support networking and programs to achieve these ends. Angola is at a critical juncture in the process of developing urban policies 12 years after the end of a period of civil conflict which lasted several decades. Decentralisation legislation has been published but the creation of municipalities is still at a formative stage. The model of elected local governments is still under discussion and the experiences of other countries is been sought. The post-war land reform has recently been evaluated publicly and assessed as not having achieved its objectives. Strategies are under discussion on how to move ahead with urban land regulation and management. An urban civil society network has emerged around municipal forums, initially in Luanda and now across the country, making use of the spaces for dialogue with government around poverty and access to basic services. A window of opportunity exists to work with the key Angolan Government institutions engaged in the urban and governance agenda. These include MAT the Ministry for Local Administration (on decentralisation and local governance) and the Ministry for Urbanism and Housing (and also the inter-ministerial Poverty Commission). Development Workshop has developed partnerships with these ministries and through its role of coordinating the preparation of Angola’s Habitat III Report is working with all of the other national institutions on the urban agenda. DW has also, over 15 years, supported the creation and development of Angola’s Urban Poverty and promoted its association with SDI. The objective of the workshop with Cities Alliance in mid-July 2015, is to promote the process of urban reform in Angola at this critical time. The Ministry for Local Government Administration (MAT) has agreed to host the workshop with an understanding that Development Workshop undertakes the coordination functions. It is envisioned that Cities Partners from Brazil and Mozambique will be engaged as well as the SDI secretariat from Cape Town. It is anticipated that there will be a useful exchange with Brazil on municipal governance and that the Angolan urban civil society network can pass on lessons learned to Mozambican counterparts. A potential outcome could be the laying of the groundwork for a future CA country program in Angola and the establishment of some formal linkages to promote ongoing exchange with Lusophone and civil society partners.
• To share best practices from Brazil and Mozambique on urbanization issues and city management adapted to the local context; • To discuss how cities in these three countries have worked on the issues of decentralization; lessons-learned and challenges ahead. • To look at citizens’ participation in city governance and discuss how/what different methodologies may be transferable; • To promote a partnership between the Cities Alliance network and the Ministry of Local Government Administration (MAT)
Expected Impacts and Results
1. The work of SDI will have been introduced to our partners in Angola. It is expected that SDI will contribute to debates on community organization and participation. Further to that, SDI will have a key role on showcasing their work to both our Mozambican and Angolan partners; 2. The groundwork for future (and formal) linkages with the Cities Alliance will have been made; 3. The groundwork for future partnerships between Lusophone countries and Cities Alliance will have been laid out; 4. The Cities Alliance will have engaged with the National Government at the very high level and will have had a timeslot in the workshop dedicated specifically to showcase Cities Alliance’s portfolio and expertise; 5. Our Mozambican partners, the City of Maputo, Diálogo (an organization financed by DFID), and LIVANINGO (a Mozambican Ngo that works with Environmental Management and is also financed by DFID) will have had the opportunity to engage in discussions of community participation.