• Tear-gas in Tahrir

    Anti-riot police fired tear gas on Saturday to disperse protesters camped out in Cairo’s Tahrir Square as Western governments voiced growing concern over Islamist President Mohamed Morsi’s assumption of sweeping powers. A hard core of opposition activists had spent the night in the iconic protest hub — epicentre of the popular uprising that toppled veteran […]

  • Fighting for citizens’ rights: An interview with SOS Habitat

    SOS Habitat is a Luanda-based civil society organisation that was founded by victims of housing demolitions in November 2002. The intention is to defend citizens’ land and housing rights by putting pressure on relevant entities to comply with Angolan and international law. SOS Habitat says its idea is to find a means of negotiating with […]

  • High-rise challenges to constructing a city’s identity

    The Quality of Life 2011 survey, conducted biannually by the Gauteng City-Region Observatory (GCRO), was presented at University of the Witwatersrand on 23 July. The survey found overall quality of life increased slightly despite global economic recession, with government delivery as driver. But core challenges appeared to be of the intangible type that are less […]

  • Pretoria ordered to restore Schubert Park

    A small group of former Schubart Park tenants were celebrating outside the abandoned buildings early Tuesday afternoon, after news reached them that their appeal to the Constitutional Court had succeeded. “We don’t know where everyone is, and a lot of people are at work, but we’re trying to let them all know,” said one of […]

  • “The real issue is not poverty, it is inequality”

    Growing cynicism about politicians, concerns regarding corruption, massive levels of unemployment and ongoing “psychosocial challenges” hamper the basic quality of life in Gauteng, according to recent research findings. The Quality of Life 2011 survey, conducted biannually by the Gauteng City-Region Observatory (GCRO), was presented at the University of the Witwatersrand on 23 July. The survey […]

  • Unqualified municipal officials face the chop in South Africa

    Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan warned municipal officials on Monday that government had no intention of extending the January 1, 2013, regulatory deadline for enforcing minimum competency levels for municipal accounting officers, saying that “officials may find themselves without a job, should they fail to comply”. In a hard-hitting address to some 1 400 delegates attending […]

  • Makoko demolitions prompt accusations of institutionalised elitism in urban planning

    Home to over 80,000 people, Makoko’s stilt-supported timber dwellings have long been an urban motif along the city’s inland shoreline – illustrative of the tough but vibrant life of Lagos. Yet, with a decision that simultaneously flouted international human rights conventions, encroached on federal jurisdiction and opened the floodgates of public scrutiny, the partial demolition […]

  • Whose city is it, anyway?

    “Accra has always had a dual personality, right from its beginnings,” says Nat-Nuno Amarteifio. He should know. A historian, he was mayor of the city from 1994 to 1998. With approximately 2,3 million residents, Accra increasingly finds itself at the centre of one of the fastest growing economies in Africa, and like many major cities […]

  • Addis Ababa city manager sacked

    After a five-day evaluation session of the Council of the Addis Ababa City Administration, the administration’s general manager and five other senior land administration officials were sacked. Sources told The Reporter that the officials were removed because of alleged corruption. However, the administration disclosed that the officials were sacked due to inefficiency and underperformance. During […]

  • Experts advocate for a review of Abuja’s masterplan

    Growth and development in Nigerian urban areas had been generally unplanned and haphazard, adding to the  failure of government to provide basic infrastructure, plan for imminent growth and expansion, implement development plans and enforce development control, says a group of experts at a recent conference in Abuja. This was part of their call to have […]