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Regional News of Tuesday, 2 July 2019


District Coordinating Directors urged to deepen public accountability

District Coordinating Directors have been urged to inculcate public accountability and transparency into their daily duty schedules to help deal with corruption and enhance the trust in public service delivery.

Ghana and many other countries have opted for democracy with the expectation that public goods and services would best be delivered to citizens through effective and efficient local governance.

Addressing District Coordinating Directors at the 5th Annual General Conference of District Coordinating Directors (ASCOD) at Jirapa, Dr Nana Ato Arthur, Head of Local Government Service, called on directors to promote accountability and transparency at the local level.

He called for the implementation of several mechanisms that have been developed to facilitate state accountability and strengthening public service.

He said there is an urgent need for Coordinating Directors to inject accountability and transparency in their work schedules to promote transparency and ensure rapid social and economic development.

The conference, which was on the theme: “Public accountability, the role of the Coordinating Director,” was described as appropriate since accountability remains a guiding principle to decentralization.

Dr Arthur said the policy of decentralization aims to shift accountability from central government to the sub-national governments to ensure that leaders at the local level accounted to citizens.

But the paradigm shift of public accountability from the central government to the local level places greater responsibility on the shoulders of District Coordinating Directors. The Head of Local Government Service said his office would soon introduce a Career Progression Scheme for Local Government Staff.

Under the scheme, each officer at the level of Deputy Director and similar positions would be required to undertake a compulsory career course in Local Governance and Management Studies at the Institute of Local Government Studies before progressing to next rank.

Dr Hafiz Bin-Salih, the Upper West Regional Minister, noted with concern that growing indiscipline such as lateness and leaving office ahead of official closing time by Local Government Staff have the tendency to jeopardise service delivery.

He urged District Coordinating Directors to provide the needed direction and supervision for staff to comply with the code of conduct and work ethics.

On security, he said, some few weeks ago some suspected Burkinabe Nationals were arrested on two occasions for allegedly preparing to undertake criminal activities. He said since then security patrols have been enhanced especially along with the country’s border towns.