The Institute of Local Government Studies (ILGS) in collaboration with the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development (MLGRD) has inaugurated the Local Governance Practitioners Forum in Accra.
The Forum will create a platform for policy actors like researchers, Civil Society Organisations (CSOs), local government institutions, policy makers, private enterprises, bureaucrats, development partners and the media to deliberate and discuss issues on local governance for the socio-economic development of the country.
The Minister for Local Government and Rural Development, Hajia Alima Mahama made this known in a speech read on her behalf by her Deputy, Mr. Osei Bonsu Amoah at the inauguration of the Local Governance Practitioners Forum.
The Deputy Minister said the country in its implementation of the decentralisation programme, Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies (MMDAs) were challenged to bring developments to the door steps of the citizenry.
According to him, the engagement of political party structures in the discharge of local governance operations will enhance grassroots involvement in local politics and bring on board concepts and competitions at the local level governance operations across the country.
He stated that the practise will also minimize the attitude of ‘winner takes all’ system of governance practiced in the country, adding that the move will also promote inclusive governance where other parties can take up positions at the local governance level of a ruling party.
“Government has released an amount of GHC 172,931,850.00 as part of the effort to implement the decentralisation reform process and will also provide funding to MMDAs to effectively and efficiently discharge their responsibilities”, the Deputy Minister said.
He however challenged the ILGS to rollout more innovative programmes and engage in research to support local governance practitioners to enable them work assiduously towards policy design and implementation.
For his part, the Director of Institute of Local Government Studies (ILGS), Dr Nicholas Awotwi said the primary objective of the forum is to enhance research for the development agenda on local governance.
This he believes will create more jobs since the country needs development at every sector of local governance.
He said the ILGS will work closely with practitioners to explore their challenges and put in place pragmatic measures to address their challenges considering it’s large membership size.
“The ILGS has fervently put in place plans, to build the capacity of management and staff of the Local Government Service to enhance their work and responsibilities”, he said.
Source: Ben LARYEA/Africa News Network