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05.03.2009 Politics

Government to review decentralization concept

By GNA

Mr Joseph Yieleh Chireh, Minister for Local Government and Rural Development, on Wednesday said government would review the 20-year practice of the country's decentralization programme.

He said the aim was to make the Metropolitan, Municipal and Districts Assemblies (MMDAs) autonomous of the central government.

β€œTo this end, local government legislations will be realigned to prevent conflicts in terms of the roles they play to ensure rationalization and transparency in the use of resources for the benefit of the people,” Mr Yieleh Chireh said.

The Minister said this when a three-member Canadian delegation led by Mr Michael Gort, Counsellor, Director of Development Cooperation at the Canadian High Commission in Ghana paid a courtesy call on him in Accra.

The visit was also to affirm the Canadian government's commitment to support Ghana to develop her local government process as well as share information that would be of mutual benefit.

Mr Yieleh Chireh said the review would remove the challenges and problems associated with the decentralisation concept and make the local government institutions more accountable to the people they directly serve.

He said the practice whereby administrators at the local levels always looked up to the central government for direction in terms of project and programmes implementation was over.

Mr Yieleh-Chireh said the capacity of the MMDAs would be enhanced to enable officials to independently implement policies at the local levels and ensure speedy implementation of programmes and projects.

He said lack of adequate human resource was a major problem and noted that the Institute of Local Government Secretariat would be strengthened to enable it effectively conduct monitoring activities.

Mr Gort on his part commended Ghana for the peaceful transition and hoped the decentralization process would be further deepened to benefit the people at the grassroots.

GNA

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