President Muhammadu Buhari on Thursday called on Africa leaders to put the days where they speak with discordant and weaker voices on global issues behind them and begin to pursue common African positions on issues.
The President said this at the opening ceremony of the Africa Regional Meeting on Habitat III, held at the International Conference Centre, Abuja.
Buhari, who was represented by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, said Africa must change the story of cities and settlement from one of chaos and slum to that of positive planning, tranquillity and environmental sustainability.
By doing so, he said that Africa will remain conscious of its commonality and peculiarities and use them to propel its urban agenda.
In a statement issued by the Senior Special Assistant to the Vice President on Media and Publicity, Laolu Akande, the President said that Nigeria welcomes a common African position on urbanisation because “it takes account of our joint efforts over the last decade.”
He observed that the African Regional Meeting with the theme: “African Priorities For The New Urban Agenda” organized by the United Nations Conference on Housing and Sustainable Urban Development (Habitat III) is timely for Africa to pursue a new urban agenda which addresses some of its peculiar challenges.
He said that the kind of urbanization which Africa should have must accordingly take place in a manner that simultaneously promotes growth and social inclusion.