, NAIROBI, Kenya, Apr 2 – The UN-Habitat says it is not moving its headquarters to New York or to the Economic Commission for Africa in Addis Ababa.
In a statement, the organisation’s Executive Director Maimuna Mohammed Sharif stated that its functions will remain in Nairobi.
She stated that in December 2017, the General Assembly adopted a resolution on strengthening UN-Habitat which re affirmed its role and expertise within the UN system as a focal point on sustainable urbanization and human settlements.
“To strengthen UN-Habitat, the General Assembly requested the Chair of the Committee of Permanent Representatives to establish an open-ended working group in Nairobi to examine different options of strengthening Member States’ oversight of UN-Habitat that would enable the agency to enhance its effectiveness, efficiency and accountability in supporting countries to implement the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the New Urban Agenda,” she said.
She explained that this also includes the implementation, follow-up and review of the New Urban Agenda, in collaboration with other UN entities.
“The General Assembly also reiterated the importance of Nairobi headquarters location of UN-Habitat and requested the Secretary-General to keep the resource needs of UN-Habitat under review with a view to improving its efficiency, effectiveness, transparency and accountability in supporting the implementation of its mandate.”
She said that to complement the work of the open-ended working group, she has embarked on efforts to strengthen UN-Habitat internally in ways that will build trust, to improve further good governance in terms of competency, accountability, transparency, efficiency, effectiveness and credibility.
“This will increase the impact and scale of UN-Habitat’s work in building a better quality of life for everyone in cities and other human settlements and in mobilizing resources to facilitate this work, in line with the New Urban Agenda and achievement of sustainable development goals,” she said.
“With this commitment at the level of Member States and the Executive Director, UN-Habitat has embarked on a new phase of work and welcomes strategic partners to join hands in ensuring that no one and no place is left behind in our common goal of achieving sustainable development in all cities and human settlements.”
She stated that UN-Habitat will continue to discharge its mandate from its Nairobi headquarters as a focal point in the UN system for human settlement issues including urbanization.
“As I stated at my well attended maiden press conference last Thursday UN-Habitat and our sister agency UNEP are the only UN agencies headquartered in the developing world,” she said.
“We are in Kenya for the long haul. I have made my commitment to the Cabinet Secretary for Foreign Affairs Ambassador Monica Juma and the CS of Infrastructure James Macharia that UN-Habitat is ready to offer its expertise to support the government to achieve its Big Four agenda, in particular, the one of availing one million houses to low income groups.”