Commonwealth Local Government Forum

Sustainable urbanisation: Call to Action

02 February 2021


CLGF is proud to announce the formal launch of the Call to Action on Sustainable Urbanisation on 2 February. 


With an additional 2.5 billion people estimated to be living in the world’s towns and cities by 2050, and almost 50% of that growth taking place in the Commonwealth, the Call to Action asks for greater priority to be given within the Commonwealth to the issues of sustainable urbanisation. It stresses the need for a closer multi-sectoral and multi-disciplinary collaboration by all stakeholders; and invites those working in the field of sustainable urbanisation to support the initiative in the run up to the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in Kigali, Rwanda June 2021 and COP26 in Glasgow, UK November 2021. 

Commonwealth organisations partnership

This is a partnership initiative by CLGF and the Association of Commonwealth Universities, the Commonwealth Association of Architects and the Commonwealth Association of Planners; with support from The Prince’s Foundation, the Rwandan Ministry of Infrastructure and the Ministry of Local Government. 


The launch took the form of a 30-minute online event with video clips and follows a high level briefing to Commonwealth High Commissioners on 26 January, ahead of CHOGM, where the subject of sustainable urbanisation will be discussed. 


It follows the 12-week programme of online events on various aspects of sustainable urbanisation, which attracted over 2000 individual participants from 44 Commonwealth and 44 non-Commonwealth countries, amounting to over 400 unique views commencing last June. 

Harmonious local communities

Opening this event, HRH the Prince of Wales praised the multi-sectoral approach and said: “I hope that between us we can seize these opportunities towards a better and more harmonious way of living together as local communities, and I very much look forward to hearing of the practical outcomes from this programme.” 


He spoke of the importance of local government and said: “If we do not achieve the SDGs in cities and towns we will certainly miss the targets overall. In this respect, city and local government mayors and leaders have a crucial convening and leadership role to play in ensuring the social, economic and environmental needs of local communities are met.”


CLGF Chair person, Rev Mpho Moruakgomo, said: “There has never been a more important time for members of the Commonwealth to work together on the issues of rapid urbanisation, climate change, exacerbated in the context of a global pandemic. City governments and leaders, and local leaders play a pivotal role in building safe, healthy and sustainable cities and towns, especially in the context of rapid urbanisation and climate change.”

Framing advocacy for CHOGM

CLGF’s Deputy-General, Ms Lucy Slack said: “It is very timely to highlight this crucial issue and the Commonwealth represents a highly effective network to harness in the efforts to ensure sustainble development. endeavour." She explained: "The Call will frame our advocacy in the run up to the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in Kigali, Rwanda June 2021 and COP26 in Glasgow, UK November 2021."


The Call to Action is available in full on the Sustainable Urbanisation website and, in addition, there is an online platform for good practice examples. 


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