The UN Deputy Secretary General, Amina J. Mohammed recently visited the informal settlements of Ussher Town and Jamestown in Accra, Ghana.
The two towns were transformed by UN-Habitat, working with Government and the community.
Mohammed, who is also the chair of the Sustainable Development Group saw the results of the people centered approach to slum upgrading which has resulted in a wide range of community and public spaces being used for sport, studies, handicraft and other cultural and commercial activities.
The delegation which also included the Special Representative of the Secretary General to the African Union, Hannah Serwaa Tetteh was guided by the Mayor of Accra, Mohammed Adjeh Sowah,the Project Director of the Gamashie Development Agency and the secretary of the Community Development Committee.
The infrastructures visited included paved streets, drainage, water points, public bath houses and repaired sewage networks and hygiene facilities.
They also visited the refurbished Ga Mashie Development Agency (GAMADA) office which serves as a homework centre for children, a basketball court, boxing gym and an open area for meetings, all aimed at ensuring full participation, increased safety and social integration.
The Deputy Secretary General also engaged young people, women and adolescent girls about the Community Managed Funds, getting training and support to come up with business initiatives and accessing a loan to be paid back to a community managed revolving fund.
In a statement published in the UN- Habitat website, Mohammed was on a two-day visit to Ghana as part of a wider regional tour.
It was stated that the UN- Habitat’s Participatory Slum Upgrading Programme(PSUP)has enabled 3600 women and youth to access affordable finance for business and commercial activities.
The UN-Habitat project in the area was started in 2013 by UN-Habitat’s Participatory Slum Upgrading Programme (PSUP), initiated by Organization of the African, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States, and financed by the European Commission.
UN-Habitat “has also provided the informal settlements, which are located in the Ga Mashie district, with facilities for handwashing, water tanks and standpipes, masks and sanitizers to prevent the spread of COVID-19, financed by UN-Habitat’s Emergency Fund and by the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA).
The collaborative project has been selected by Dubai Expo 2020 as a Best Practice Winner and the story about the PSUP project is on the World Expo website and will be presented in an exhibition during the EXPO from October 2021 to March 2022,” the statement added.