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CHF Ghana- Calling for Improved Access to Urban Services

Published 04/12/2011 by Global Communities

CHF Ghana Calls for Improved Urban Services Provisioning
By Mavis Otinkorang
The issue of access to the urban space economy is one that challenges policy makers and practitioners, researchers, academics and members of grassroots organisations, given its inequality across the broad spectrum of the society.
The inequity in access results from the combination of factors and conditions including institutional, social, economic, and manifests in uneven development across the city.
In particular, access to a city’s space economy is highly differentiated with respect to the core functional areas of the local economy, service delivery and shelter.
At a recent workshop organised in Accra by the Urban Ghana Platform, with the support of the CHF International Ghana, formally Co-operative Housing Foundation and the Institute of Local Government Studies, Accra, the country director of CHF Madam Sardrine Campelle-Manuel argued that, because urban poverty has more than one cause, focusing on a single intervention is not likely to be transformative.
Speaking on the theme “Access to my city: economy, service and shelter” she noted that it is a fact that, the economy is a major determinant of a city’s growth, adding that, with a dormant economy there will be a dormant service provisioning, the reverse of which is true in the case of a vibrant economy.
Madam Capelle again noted that, facilitating and providing essential service in the cities are vital to a fully functional living space. The reasons for non-provision of adequate urban services, she observed, have been varied over the years and government cannot afford not to find innovative ways of addressing whatever constraints that inhibit social services delivery.
She pointed out that, in the various urban sectors of the economy, large geographic swathes of the towns and cities are characterised as slums and squatter settlements, not meeting the standards set by the rules and regulations’ prescribing the standards of environment service and shelter sectors respectively.
“With the rapid increase in the population and continuing expansion of the city limits the demand for urban service in Ghana’s cities is growing very rapidly and even when service supply is accepted, poor maintenance and inadequate replacement leads to technical losses in the distribution network” she intimated.
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