Le défi de l'urbanisation de l'Afrique

NAIROBI – Ma mère, comme sa mère, sa grand-mère et ainsi de suite, est née dans la pauvreté dans le village rural de Rarieda, au Kenya. Moi aussi je suis né dans ce village et j'y ai vécu jusqu'à ce qu'il soit frappé par une famine brutale quand j'ai eu deux ans. Sans nourriture, sans argent ni opportunités, ma mère a fait ce que font des milliers de villageois africains chaque jour : elle a déménagé avec nous vers la ville, à la recherche d'une vie meilleure. Mais étant donné le manque d'emplois et de logements à Nairobi, nous nous sommes retrouvés à Kibera, l'un des plus grands bidonvilles d'Afrique.

Situé à seulement quelques miles du centre-ville de Nairobi, Kibera est un campement très pollué, à la population très dense, avec ses routes de fortune et ses cabanes aux toits de tôle ondulée. Le gouvernement du Kenya ne reconnaît pas Kibera, il n'existe aucun réseau d'assainissement, ni aucun réseau électrique réglementé. Ses habitants, estimés à un nombre compris entre quelques centaines de milliers et plus d'un million, n'ont aucune existence officielle.

Kibera n'est qu'un exemple des conséquences de l'urbanisation rapide qui gagne du terrain dans le monde entier. Plus de 44% des habitants des pays en développement vivent déjà dans des villes. Le Population Reference Bureau estime que d'ici 2050, seulement 30% de la population mondiale restera dans les zones rurales. Mais peu de gens ont pris le temps de considérer les implications de ce changement pour des familles comme la mienne.

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