The minister appealed to the regional cities to take on climate change action focused on disaster risk reduction and resilience saying that government intends to measure and identify strategies for improving resilience in the ten regional cities of Uganda.
The regional cities are Arua, Gulu, Lira, Soroti, Mbale, Jinja, Masaka, Mbarara, Hoima and Fort portal.
The government has acknowledged that there
is a critical need to plan for sustainable resilient cities and human
settlement development in urban areas in order to combat the impact of climate change.
The call has been made by the State
Minister for Urban Development Obiga Kania while officiating at the International
commemoration of World Cities Day in Kampala on Friday.
The day which is celebrated every October
31st provides an opportunity to promote interest in global
sustainable urbanization, push forward cooperation among countries and cities
in meeting opportunities and addressing challenges of urbanization, and commit
to striving towards sustainable urban development around the world.
The participants who gathered in
Kampala to celebrate the day were mainly the key actors in climate change in the government made their
remarks based on the general theme for World Cities Day ‘Better City, Better
life’, and the sub-theme “Adapting Cities for Climate Resilience”.
But speaking at the event, the State
Minister Kania noted that climate change will have serious impacts for cities
in the coming decades especially in Uganda adding that there should be proper planning
for sustainable resilient cities and human settlement development.
According to Kania, Uganda currently
has many cities and when they expand, they encounter environmental and
ecological systems like floodplains, forests, and wetlands that naturally exist
to hold storm water and act as reservoirs of water during drought which he says
contribute to the vulnerability of residents.
He however adds that as the regional
cities increase, the government anticipates that they will be affected by climatic
changes and emergencies differently and these challenges will continue expanding
if focus and action is not taken.
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He also appealed to the regional
cities to take on climate change action focused on disaster risk reduction and
resilience saying that government intends to measure and identify strategies
for improving resilience in the ten regional cities of Uganda.
The regional cities are Arua, Gulu,
Lira, Soroti, Mbale, Jinja, Masaka, Mbarara, Hoima and Fort portal.
He also appealed to each regional city
in Uganda to determine the natural systems that provide major benefits to it
and added that the government is organized to support them to develop and
implement a strategy, complimented with an urban green inventory; capturing the
green stock within the city, in order to recognize the value these assets
contribute to the cities infrastructure, and manage them for long term
On his part, Muhammad Ssemambo an
official from the Ministry of Water and Environment Climate Change Department
says that both political and technical leaders of cities have to work together
and ask some basic questions such as to what extent the technical teams have integrated climate change in the design and programs of the city before they
get approved. According to Ssemambo, some of
the poorly made designs are the ones resulting into some challenges related to
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Center for Trade and Development
‘s Viola Musimenta says that the solutions to problems caused by climate change
can be solved depending on how the planning is done. She says that Kampala has
been majorly affected by floods and if this problem is to be solved,
it may need to reverse the way infrastructure in the city is being built.