Empower the ward development committees

Letters, Normal

The National, Thursday 17th November 2011

I REFER to your report “LLG gives financial powers to wards” (Nov 9).
I support the move by the Wapenamanda LLG to give financial powers to wards in Enga.
The 1995 Organic Law on Pro­vincial and Local Level Governments clearly spelt out how the three-tier system of government should operate in relation to local governance and the distribution of funds for development purposes.
It is understood that the joint district planning and budget priority committees (JDPBPC) allocate resources according to areas in the districts.
However, the question is how much input is being put in by ward councillors and their ward deve­lopment committees into budgetary debates of the JDPBPC.
As development projects in rural areas are at the ward level, it is only appropriate that ward councillors be given the opportunity to take ownership and lead in implementing prioritised community projects.
However, two factors come into play – one being technical expertise in formulating ward development plans and the other being the effective management and application of financial resources allo­cated for development projects.
The ward development committees are key entities as they work with the people and can identify the people’s needs.
As such, it would be good if the JDPBPC were to consult these committees when prioritising development agendas.

Simeon Emboge
Via email