The Urban Governance and Secure Tenure campaigns were jointly launched 26 and 27 June in Cuba.
A popular launch in the city of Barrio Las Guàsimas on the 26th was followed by the official launch in la Havana on the 27th.The popular launch saw the participation of the population of Barrio Las Guàsimas and Managua, who interacted with participants invited from several regions and countries where the campaigns are already launched. The representatives of the Philippines, Senegal, Brazil highlighted the role of the campaigns in their respective countries.
The official launch of the campaigns took place in the city of Havana. The President of the National Peoples Assembly, Mr. Ricardo Alarcon de Quesada chaired the ceremony. He was supported by a panel including the heads of the National Housing Institute, the Physical Planning Institute of Cuba, the Resident Representative of UNDP, UN-HABITAT Regional Director for Latin America and the Caribbean and the Campaigns’ Coordinators.
The launch was attended by over 300 participants including representatives of local public assemblies, communities from different Cuban cities, as well as representatives from several countries where the campaigns have already been launched or where the process is ongoing such as Philippines, Senegal, Brazil, Burkina Faso, Morocco, India, etc. Given the strong linkage of the campaigns with other UN-HABITAT programmes such as Localizing Agenda 21 which is well advanced in Cuba, the launch of the campaigns coincided with the International Conference on sustainable Cities and Localizing Agenda 21 and involved the participants to both events.
The action plan is articulated around a number of principles agreed by all stakeholders that will enable Cuba meet the target of the Millennium Development Goals on improving the lives of peoples leaving in substandard housing. Indeed Cuba has targeted the improvement of the lives of 50% of such populations
- Confirming equitable urban policies, with concrete actions towards ensuring the well-being of the whole population and the satisfaction of all basic needs, in partnership with the local authorities
- Ensuring greater efficiency in the search for territorial development geared towards improving the inhabitants quality of life, and engaging them in playing a predominant role in the transformation of their living environment
2) Maintain secure tenure by:
- Mobilizing resources and peoples’ participation in achieving better results in the neighbourhood upgrading schemes, with greater impact in peoples’ levels of satisfaction.
- Protecting gender equality, the incorporation of different actors, access to land, and loan and credit schemes for Cuban families for both the construction of new housing and the conservation and rehabilitation of the existing housing stock
3) Develop medium term actions geared towards reaching the following objectives contained in the National Action Plan:
Objective 1: Encourage broader participation of all key actors, especially the local population, in the elaboration management and control of the Local Urban Development Plans
Objective 2: Strengthen the technical capacity (social and professional) of the teams of work in the Provincial and Municipal Physical Planning and Housing Offices, as well as the municipal authorities, associations, inhabitants and other actors
Objective 3: Develop social, urban and housing policies that attain cities accessible to the entire population regarding basic services, water and sewerage systems, as well as other basic services; so that, by 2020, at least 50% of all urban homes situated in precarious, deteriorated settlements, will have significantly bettered their quality of life through neighbourhood upgrading schemes
Objective 4: Encourage the approval of legal instruments that support actual requirements and that support the dispositions coming from the General Urban Territorial Development Plan and the General Housing Law
Objective 5: Disseminate the efforts made towards the development of positive management practices in the processes of transformation and development of cities and the upgrading of the living conditions of unhealthy neighbourhoods