African candidate, Dr. Mohamed Boudra, Mayor of Al Hoceima (Morocco), has emerged President of United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG). This came about as a result of a keenly contested election at the organisation’s World Congress held on Friday, November 15, 2019 in Durban, South Africa.
Boudra succeeds South African Parks Tau, who served as UCLG President from 2016 to 2019. With the election of Mohamed Boudra, Africa is entering its second consecutive term as President of UCLG for the period 2019-2022.
After the installation of the new presidential team, Mr. Boudra congratulated his predecessor and the entire outgoing presidential team for the work they had done for the organisation.
Regarding the outgoing President, Mr. Parks Tau, he said: “We have not lost a President, because you will continue to be our President. But we have won a minister who will defend local and regional authorities. Thank you to South Africa for this congress, which I can call the Congress of the Union. The union of all UCLG sections.”
In his speech at the inauguration of his term as President of UCLG, Boudra said: “Thank you to my peers for their confidence and for allowing me to be elected President of UCLG. The debates and exchanges were fascinating and full of lessons. I solemnly undertake to complete my commitments to raise our organization to the highest level. We have come here together with the concern to safeguard and strengthen the unity and strengthening of our world organization and we have succeeded.”
African delegates expressed their satisfaction at seeing the continent retain the leadership of the global organisation.
“It is a total satisfaction, all the more so as the bid has been in progress since the Executive Committee meeting in Cairo in June before continuing in Libreville in July 2019. The choice of Africa’s candidate was made according to a very democratic process and everyone was behind Mohamed Boudra because we thought he was the best candidate for Africa. Today the result is there, Mr. Boudra is elected President of UCLG World. It is Africa that is honoured, it is Gabon that is honoured,” said Léandre Nzué, President of UCLG Africa.
“Africa remains at the helm of the global organization. Now we must remain dedicated and committed to further developing our World organization. The world is watching us and we need to propose viable solutions, and we are ready for that,” added Ms Thembisile Nkadimeng, elected Co-President of UCLG.
“I am pleased to see that the world’s local elected representatives have kept the values of our organisation. The values of making an election without rupture, an election without fracture. We are also pleased to maintain this second term as an African and to ensure that our global institution remains a strong one,” states Armand Béouindé, Mayor of Ouagadougou, elected UCLG Vice-President for Africa.
The next UCLG World Congress will be held in 2022 in the city of Daejeon in South Korea.