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CS Njeru urges member states to continue funding UN-Habitat

Lands, Public Works, Housing and Urban Development Cabinet Secretary Zachariah Njeru has urged United Nations member states to contribute more resources to fund operations of the global urban shelter agency UN-Habitat.

Speaking Tuesday in Nairobi while opening a meeting of the Executive Board of the UN Habitat at the UN Headquarters in Gigiri Nairobi, the CS said Kenya is committed to paying regular annual voluntary contributions to UN-Habitat.

“I note with concern that the voluntary contributions from member states remain low. I wish to urge member states to honour their commitments by providing the much needed financial support especially in non-earmarked contributions, which are vital for the normative work of the agency,” said Njeru.

The Executive Board is composed of 36 member states and provides oversight of the organization. The CS said commitment and participation in the meeting is key to ensuring continuity in the work of UN-Habitat, which is headquartered in Nairobi, Kenya.

He congratulated the Executive Director Maimunah Mohamed Sharif for her efforts in fund-raising noting that for the first time in 12 years UN-Habitat has realized a surplus of USD 5.5 million in the non-earmarked foundation funds and also managed to repay some funds to the pending loan.

CS Njeru called upon the Executive Director to continue introducing innovative ways of resource mobilisation and enhance the capacity of her team to continue leveraging on the political goodwill of member states and donors to ensure sustainability in management of the finances of UN-Habitat.

The CS appreciated the support from UN-Habitat in the implementation of Kenya’s transformative agenda adding that Kenya has prioritized affordable housing as one of its projects.

Executive Director of UN in Nairobi Maimunah Sharif thanked staff and member states for their support for the UN-Habitat vision.

“In 2023, as we all work towards a successful second United Nations Habitat Assembly, it is my hope that we can keep the Nairobi spirit of collaboration and partnership,” she said.

The Executive Board meeting will also discuss the upcoming UN-Habitat Assembly which is expected to bring more than 6, 000 visitors to Nairobi.

By Ian Chepkuto

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