Cités Unies France (CUF)
The proposed project adopts an approach that Cités Unies France (CUF) is trying to develop based on a new operational paradigm in crises: “the generalist local approach”. This paradigm aims to encourage, promote and support crisis management by the affected local authorities. Their knowledge of the territory and the population, as well as their proximity, give them the necessary legitimacy to manage crises more effectively. That is why CUF wants to support projects implemented by the affected governments as much as possible based on the management capacities of each municipal authority, the objective being to allow them to manage the crisis and its consequences and lead the reconstruction of their own territory.
The Central African Republic has experienced major political instability and numerous conflicts in recent decades. The violent clashes that took place in 2013 and early 2014 left several thousand dead and led to mass displacement and significant material destruction. The municipal authorities were also badly affected. They have major problems in the day-to-day running of their territory, providing the population with good quality services, and taking part in efforts to resolve the crisis and return to the normal, effective running of public affairs. What is more, the presence of a large number of development and humanitarian actors implementing structural projects in neighbourhoods, often without having previously consulted the municipal authority, further damages the municipal authority’s credibility among the population. These different factors contribute to reducing the confidence that inhabitants have in their municipal authorities and explain in part why they no longer pay their local taxes.
Given the post-crisis situation in CAR, the municipal authority needs to take back control of running basic services for the population. It needs to be at the centre of the process to reinforce its technical and financial capacities, improve the management of services, and consolidate social cohesion in its territory.
Two municipal services that are crucial to people’s everyday lives were stopped following this outbreak of violence: local markets and household waste collection. With support from CUF and ACTED, the objective of this project is to provide the municipal authority with support in re-establishing these services in 3 arrondissements of the capital. A contract was signed between the European Union and Cités Unies France on 19 January 2015, for an initial duration of 30 months, for the programme, “Renforcer la ville de Bangui pour sortir de la crise”. Due to the outbreak of violence, the activities only began in earnest at the beginning of January 2017 and the contract was extended until 18 January 2019.
Helping to reinforce the technical and financial capacities of the central municipal authority and three arrondissement authorities in Bangui so that they improve the quality of and access to two essential services – waste collection and the management of markets – in order to re-establish trust between the population and the municipality.