Municipal Institute Of LearningMILE - Municipal Institute Of Learning
Master Class wraps up on Safety and Upgrading in Informal Settlements
The City in partnership with Violence Prevention through Urban Upgrading (VPUU) wrapped up the third and final day of an inaugural Master Class on Safety Planning and Governance in Informal Settlement Upgrading.
The event which was held at the Moses Mabhida Stadium from 27-29 June was facilitated by the Municipal Institute of Learning. The Master Class provided a platform for various municipal officials to engage and discuss practical solutions when considering urban safety and the upgrading of informal settlements.

Participants engaged in fruitful round table discussions that will help create a vision for a safer city.

EThekwini Deputy Mayor Fawzia Peer commented that the Municipality through the Human Settlements Unit and strategic partners has engaged with communities living in informal settlements to ensure that communities receive basic service delivery together with a holistic approach to upgrading their environment.

Peer said that the Master Class supports the eight areas for mainstreaming the 2030 sustainable development agenda into South Africa’s national, provincial and local context, namely: raising awareness; applying multi-stakeholder approaches; tailoring Sustainable Development Goals to national, sub-national and local contexts; creating horizontal policy coherence; creating vertical policy coherence; budgeting for the future;monitoring, evaluation, reporting and accountability; and assessing risks and fostering adaptability.

One of the key messages that had emerged from the three-day sessions was to cultivate a collaborative culture where government, business and residents work together to address rapid urbanization and the reality that half of the world population will soon be staying in cities.

EThekwini Municipality Human Settlements Senior Manager: Faizal Seedat, shared insights on the strategy, principles and approaches to the Informal Settlement Upgrading Programme in eThekwini.  He said that the City has installed sanitation blocks and electricity in most informal settlements with a number of services to be included in the coming years. 

Seedat said that over 560 urban informal settlements comprising 233,000 households, which makes up nearly a quarter of the City’s population, still needs to be addressed. While it is acknowledged that cities are engines of economic growth, they are also centres of extreme poverty as a result of marginalisation and exclusion.

The UN Habitat introduced the Safer Cities programme in 1996 and eThekwini Municipality joined the programme in 1999. Since then, the Municipality benefited from technical support provided by UN -Habitat and have since developed a crime and violence prevention strategy. The implementation of the strategy is coordinated through a dedicated Safer Cities Unit; however, the Municipality has not managed to continuously capacitate both political/administrative leadership and strategic partners to improve its own capabilities to address crime and violence.

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