CDD Supports Election Of DCEs

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Election of MMDCEs the centre observed would be a major antidote to the many violent foot soldier agitations that has bedevilled the country in recent times, coupled with alleged corrupt practices during confirmation of these appointees.

Paul Osei-Kuffuor, Programmes Manager of CDD-Tamale who supported the move at a media sensitization workshop in Tamale noted that the country had chalked tremendous progress in decentralization over the years.

He disclosed that the successful feet achieved by the country in decentralization despite the numerous challenges since the return to democratic rule in 1992 was commendable comparing it with other African countries.

It was in this light he advocated for the election of MMDCEs to complete the circle in order to put a stop to what he described as needless agitations by party foot soldiers and interest groups building up unnecessary tension and threatening the peace in the country.

Mr Osei-Kuffuor however maintained that various policy regulations be put in place to guard against much power wielded by others in the decentralization ladder which many a time is abused to the disadvantage of the citizenry.

He bemoaned the low awareness of community members on local governance issues especially the District Assemblies Common Fund (DACF), MPs Common Fund and the Persons with Disability Fund (PWD).

According  to him, the citizenry awareness of the various funds allocated to the assemblies including the Local Governance Financial Support could help in them holding their leaders accountable in event they fail to live up to their task.

He disclosed that the failure by the various assemblies to seek the inputs of residents in developmental plans before embarking on them was a gross defeat of the decentralization process.

The programmes manager observed that there was a weak transparency of the finances of the various assemblies as most of them were reluctant in accounting for monies expended to them by the central government and various donor agencies to the people they represent.

It was as a result of these gaps many residents perceived assemblies, he added, as corrupt and did not see the need to pay tolls to improve on their Internally Generated Funds (IGF).

The Director of the Institute of Local Government Studies (ILGS)-Tamale Campus, Richard Kambootah underscored the significance of social accountability in the local governance system indicating that it was a major tool in facilitating development.

He appealed to the media to partner various stakeholders in demanding social accountability from policy makers in order to achieve the desired results of entrenching democracy.

The workshop which attracted journalists from the Northern and Upper East Regions under the theme, ‘Promoting the Social Accountability through Citizen Participation in Local Governance’ was jointly organized by the CDD and European Union (EU).

 From Stephen Zoure, Tamale

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