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South Sudan joins UN-Habitat / Coca-Cola water partnership
Nairobi 9 May 2014—The partnership between UN-Habitat and The Coca-Cola company which seeks to promote water sustainability in selected countries around the world has been expanded to twelve after South Sudan signed up as a member of the initiative. Started in 2007,the “Golden Triangle Partnership for clean and safe water”, provides improved access to clean drinking water, sanitation and techniques that harvest groundwater and rainwater. The countries benefiting from the initiative are:India, Nepal, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Cambodia, Vietnam, Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania and Bhutan. During the Seventh World Urban Forum in Medellin, a special event panel discussed the importance of safe water in schools and communities. The panel considered ways in which the Golden Triangle of Business, Government and Civil Society can come together to renew and expand the focus on water, sanitation and hygiene.During the special event, Andre Dzikus, UN-Habitat representative announced the extension of the partnership to South Sudan making it the fourth country in Africa to become part of this initiative and the twelfth country worldwide. A brochure titled The Power of Partnerships was also launched, highlighting the initiatives each partner has undertaken in each country. UN-Habitat and The Coca-Cola Company have initiated the Support My School Campaign in India, Bangladesh, Bhutan and Nepal for access to water and sanitation, rainwater harvesting and fostering a learning environment in schools. Participants at the special event included: Aminath Athifa, Minister of State for Housing and Infrastructure, Maldives; Alka S Asthana, Director, Ministry of Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation, India; Dionisio Velez, Mayor of Cartagena, Colombia; Deepak Jolly, Vice President, Coca-Cola INSWABU; Professor Saswat Bandyopadhyay of the Center for Environmental Planning and Technology, India, and Marcos Llinas, Senior Manager, Columbia. The World Urban Forum is forum convened by UN-Habitat to examine the most pressing issues in the area of human settlements. With over 18,000 participants the forum was the perfect platform to discuss the “Golden Triangle Approach to Equity and Development”.