11.05.2005 Regional News

DCE advocates reduction in membership of unit committees

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Assin Fosu, May 11, GNA - The District Chief Executive for Assin North, Mr Kwabena Karikari-Apau has suggested the reduction on the number of members constituting unit committees to make them handy for effective work.

Mr Karikari-Apau said the current 15-membership of the unit committees was too large making it difficult to obtain quorum at meetings.

He said the situation had contributed to the inability of the committees to function effectively. The DCE made the observation at a forum organised by Assin North District Directorate of the National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE) as part of activities marking the fifth National Constitution Week at Assin Fosu.

Mr Karikari-Apau attributed the inability of the sub-structures of the assemblies to function to the fact that the people were not well prepared for the system.

"Some assembly members thought there were some financial gains attached to the position and therefore spent heavy sums of money to campaign for the position. When later they discovered that things were not all that rosy at the Assembly they became disillusioned and did not want to put their hearts into the work of the Assembly."

He said because of their behaviour during the electioneering campaign, the electorate also felt that they were making money at the Assembly and as such had refused to understand their problems. To make the matter worse was the Assembly's inability to pay the staff of the town/area councils, the DCE said.

Mr P.K. Dery, District Co-ordinating Director, called for adequate training and orientation to equip councillors with requisite knowledge and skills to operate effectively. District Assemblies and the communities must collaborate and work out some incentive packages for the unit committees and assembly members, he suggested.

Mr Dery appealed to non-governmental organisations to support the assemblies to provide adequate funds for the work of its sub-structures. Mr Thomas Yallow, District Director, NCCE, said the practice of democracy was expensive and that every effort should be made by the Central Government and the assemblies to make the decentralisation programme to work.

The theme for the Week was: "How can the lower structures of the Assembly work effectively to enhance development in the communities." 11 May 05

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