Maimunah Sharif at ICLEI World Congress 2015

Maimunah Sharif at Habitat III Conference in October 2016

Maimunah Sharif with the Global Task Force visiting the UN Secretary General in September 2017 (c) UCLG

ICLEI congratulates Maimunah Sharif as the next Executive Director of UN-Habitat

Maimunah Sharif, Mayor of Penang Island, Malaysia, and an active member of the ICLEI Global Executive Committee, has been appointed as the next Executive Director of UN-Habitat, the United Nations program working towards a better urban future. This is the first time an active ICLEI leader is appointed to such a function.

“ICLEI has been a long-time partner of UN-Habitat, and today we are very proud to see one of our most active leaders appointed to the key position of Executive Director. This comes at a critical time when the UN is undergoing reforms and opening its doors to more and more cities and regions. We congratulate and wish Maimunah Sharif the best of luck in her new position and believe she will be able to bring forward the vision of a sustainable urban future that we share,” commented Gino Van Begin, ICLEI Secretary General.

"We also commend Dr. Joan Clos for his leadership to advance the work of UN-Habitat and on the convening of Habitat III in 2016, which concluded with the adoption of the New Urban Agenda."

In 2011, Maimunah Sharif was the first woman appointed as Municipal President of the Municipal Council of Seberang Perai in Malaysia. In this function, she has shown a strong commitment to sustainability, taking action towards zero-waste, disaster risk reduction, gender equality though local participatory budgeting and youth engagement.

Following her election as the representative of Southeast Asia at the ICLEI Global Executive Committee announced at ICLEI World Congress in Seoul, Republic of Korea in April 2015, Maimunah Sharif has been a key representative of ICLEI at global fora, in particular during the Habitat III process with the Global Task Force of Local and Regional Governments.

Within this scope, she demonstrated her leadership by being actively involved at the local authorities dialogue in New York, USA in May 2016, at the third preparatory committee meeting in Surabaya, Indonesia in July 2016 and at the official Habitat III conference in Quito, Ecuador in October 2016, as well as its follow-up meeting in New York City in September 2017.

Maimunah Sharif has also been one of the key leaders involved in ICLEI’s work on climate change. She was the first Malaysian mayor to sign the Compact of Mayors at ICLEI World Congress in April 2015. She represented local and regional governments at the preparatory meeting of the 23rd UN Climate Change Conference (Pre-COP23) in Nadi, Fiji in October 2017, which contributed significantly to the successful outcomes of local and regional governments at COP23 in Bonn, and in the development of the Front-line Cities and Islands initiative in particular.

For more information:

Announcement from the office of the UN Secretary General based on the nomination to the UN General Assembly

Announcement from UN-Habitat on Dr. Clos and Mayor Sharif

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