16.9% urban residents live in metal containers, wooden, kioks structures – Report
A research conducted by African Cities Research Consortium (ACRC) indicates that 16.9 per cent of urban residents in Accra live in non-conventional housing structures, such as metal containers, wooden and kiosk structures compared to other regions in Ghana.
It said almost half of the urban household in the city of about 47.6 per cent only live in rented accommodation.
The City Lead, ACRC, Professor Abdulai Abdul Gafaru disclosed this during a workshop of the Accra city study uptake organised by the Ministry of Local Government, Decentralisation and Rural Development (MLGDRD), in Accra on Thursady.
The study which is a six-year investment aimed to gain a clearer understanding of the interrelated and systemic development challenges confronting African cities, and to advised and support innovative interventions that could improve living conditions and the contributions of cities to economic development and poverty reduction in Africa.
It was conducted in collaboration with government officials, civil society organisations and other policy actors working to promote urban development in 13 cities namely; Accra, Freetown, Bukavu, Dar es Salaam, Addis Ababa, Nairobi, Khartoum, Lagos, Lilongwe, Mogadishu and Harare.
The Accra research focused on the Greater Accra Metropolitan Area (GAMA) and two overarching studies on political economy of the city by drawing insights from political settlement theory; and a City-of-systems analysis which aimed to provide insights into the state of interrelated infrastructure systems that facilitate material flows and shape social outcomes in Accra.
In addition, the research was conducted in five urban development domains, namely: Neighbourhood and District Economic Development (NDED), Structural Transformation, Land and Connectivity (L&C), Housing, and Informal Settlements (IS).
Prof. Gafaru said although rental accommodation holds the key to responding to the housing deficit in the city, the rental delivery option has not been prioritised in housing policies.
The rental accommodation he said was largely provided by private-led informal housing providers who operate under a weak rental regulatory regime to deliver substandard accommodation.
The Greater Accra Regional Minister, Mr Henry Quartey said the pattern of urbanisation and the associated problems called for a more integrated and multi-scalar approach to the definition and analysis of urban problems and to proffer sustainable urban solutions.
“This is why we find the collaboration between the ministry and ACRC refreshing and timely to address the many challenges confronting our city, Accra,” he said.
The Minister of State, MLGDRD, Mr O.B Amoah said in spite of the challenges and complexities associated with urbanisation, government was committed to leveraging urbanisation as a catalyst for sustainable development.
He assured that the ministry would ensure, the findings and evidence from ACRC research would inform and shape national policies, programmes, and local action.
BY VIVIAN ARTHTUR