UCLG President voices the experiences of cities at the UN High Level Panel


The first meeting of the High-level Panel of Eminent Persons on the Post 2015 Development Agenda took place in New York on 24-25 September.
Under-Secretary General Eliasson, welcomed the Mayor of Istanbul to the preparatory briefing for the panel members saying “Cities represent over 60% of the world population and we need you here”.
Panel members agreed that the Post 2015 process would need to be fully integrated with other processes currently taking place in the international agenda, such as the follow up to Rio+20 and the Habitat III.
The independence of the panel and the need to ensure that the voices of the different stakeholders were included in the Panel´s report were emphasized.
The President of UCLG and Mayor of Istanbul expressed his commitment to ensure that the diverse voices of local and regional authorities would reach the panel through his inputs and he offered to facilitate a meeting of the Panel members with local and regional authorities.
It was further agreed that it was necessary to identify catalysts to achieve Post 2015 Goals. It is necessary to identify areas that have the greatest multiplier effect, such as access to water and gender equality.
The UCLG President called the Post 2015 process to focus on empowering the different stakeholders and in particular local and regional authorities. Growing inequalities are theAchilles heel of the Millenium Developement Goals. Many of these inequalities cannot be addressed without proper service provision of the urban dwellers around the world”.
Jean-Michel Severino stressed the need to decrease conflict and address governance issues in the Post 2015 agenda in order to ensure development and growth.
Peace Nobel Price winner Tawakel Karman a journalist from Yemen asked the panel to ensure that the financing of the objectives was properly included in the panel report.
Amina Mohamed, Special Advisor to the UN Secretary General for the Post 2015 Development Planning emphasized the important achievements of the MDGs and expressed the hope that the new agenda will be universal and would build on shared but differentiated responsibilities from the different stakeholders.