The Executive Director of the United Nations Human Settlements Program (UN-HABITAT) at the level of under Secretary-General by the United Nations General Assembly, Dr. Joan Clos visited the National University of Rwanda (NUR) on this 17th May 2012.
In his visit at NUR, Dr. Joan Clos delivered a public lecture to NUR community explaining how important it is for academicians to advise urban planners as building cities require specific professional skills. He said: â€śCities planning is a whole process. It implicates some professional touch. If idone spontaneously without proper guidance, it will not produce the expected positive effects on the economy it could have produced if the case was better planned. This process requires thinking and planning, also explaining to the population. Academicians as people who understand urbanization principles should advise urban planners to act according to these principlesâ€ť.
As far as Rwanda urbanization is concerned, Dr Joan Clos noted that it is imperative to plan for urbanization as Rwanda Economy is growing because numbers of cities will certainly increase in the future. â€śThe pace of current economic growth in Rwanda indicates substantial expansion as plenty opportunity will arise to create bigger cities, intermediate and small towns. In this perspective, urbanization should be parallel to this economyâ€ť he concluded.
Prof. Silas Lwakabamba, the NUR Rector in his remarks, requested students to think early about their role to improve urbanization as future planners. â€śStudents following courses such as civil engineering and urban planning are future planners. They should think early about their contribution to improving the urbanization situation in Rwandaâ€ť said Prof S. Lwakabamba
David Musonera, a 3rd year student in Geography and Urban Planning revealed his excitement pertaining to Dr Joan Clos presentation. He said, â€śCities are growing in Rwanda, if there is no planning, there will not be sustainable development. I was very excited about Dr. Closâ€™s lecture especially about the relationship of urban planning and economy. As a student it incites me to care about urbanization. Since then I decided not to keep silent in a case I notice erroneous situation in urbanization since it may harm our economyâ€ť.
Dr Joan Clos visited several institutions namely Kigali Institute of Sciences and Technology, Kigali City Council and Prime Ministerâ€™s Office.
NUR Rector during the public lecture
Students who attended the lecture got time to react on the public lecture
Filed by Jean Baptiste Micomyiza