Equal Partnerships – African Intermediary Cities as Actors and Partners in Urban Migration Governance

Partnerships in Kumasi, Ghana


Charles-Martin Shields, Susan S. Ekoh and Seth Christopher Yaw Appiah

Home to a population of around 3.35 million inhabitants, the Ghanaian city of Kumasi is the capital of the Ashanti region, connecting Ghana’s north with the southern coast. Kumasi presents an important destination and transit city for internal migration as well as mixed migration from Nigeria to the east and multiple ECOWAS member countries to the west. Despite migration not being a political focus topic in Kumasi, “organic” networks of city authorities, NGOs, and community leaders engage on related questions in many ways. To create an overview of activities, partnerships and cooperation gaps, the Equal Partnerships project developed participatory field research in Kumasi and facilitated a local workshop in February 2023. The stakeholder mapping shows that while migration does not figure officially on the political agenda of the local government, multiple actors engage with migrants in their daily activities, beyond official policies, laws, and regulations. Establishing local-national dialogues to close gaps between the recently adopted national migration policy and local actions on the ground holds great potential. The case study situates Kumasi in the national and regional migration context, presents the outcomes of the stakeholder mapping, identifies opportunities and challenges of cooperative action on migration and concludes with concrete policy recommendations for strengthening multi-stakeholder partnerships to address mixed migration in the urban context.