NALAG holds an Extra-Ordinary National Delegates Conference



An Extraordinary Delegates Conference, put together by the National Association of Local Authorities of Ghana (NALAG) to elect its National Executive Council (NEC) members, has come to an end in Accra, capital of the Greater Accra Region.

The conference which took place on the 25th and 26th June, 2014 at the National Theatre had in attendance dignitaries from the Local Government Ministry, and other partners of NALAG including GIZ, Local Government Service, Institute of Local Government Studies (ILGS).

In his welcome address at the conference, the Greater Accra Regional Minister, Nii Laryea Afotey Agbo, said the decentralisation had brought in its wake the bureaucracy and technocracy of governance to the local level. NALAG as the umbrella organisation of all Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies in Ghana is expected to play its role of complementing government effort in enhancing local governance, smoothen the decentralization process and build the capacities of its members to be better placed to carry out these objectives.

According to him, NALAG might have contributed to some extent in its lobbying roles for the benefit of its members, but a lot more remains with its advocacy role to be done, seen and felt by the entire membership of the Association.

He stated that the conference could not have come at a better time than now, since it would afford the members the opportunity to correct the anomaly that erupted in the previous 18th Biennial National Delegates Conference at Sunyani, Tyco City, which resulted in the inability of the delegates to elect a full complement of the National Executive Council (NEC) but had the already elected Regional Representatives sworn into office as an Interim Executive Council.

He expressed hope that the delegates must have overcome the challenges that disenabled them to elect their leaders in the previous conference and charged them to be guided by the principles of selflessness, justice and fairness, accountability, transparency and more importantly integrity.

He further entreated the gathering to put their shoulders to the wheel to ensure that NALAG reflects the Democracy of Ghana by having a peaceful and successful election.

On his part, the Interim Chairman of (NALAG), Hon. Naa Abubakar Abdul-Rahman, expressed optimism by challenging the yet to be elected Council members to work assiduously to increase the tempo for NALAG to take its rightful place in the decentralisation process in Ghana.

He acknowledged that there were teething problems such as inadequate human resources stemming from inadequate financial resources to hire the needed human resources but called on the Council to assist the dynamic General Secretary of the Association, Hon. Agnes Naa Momo Lartey, and also called on the willing support of the Minister of Local Government and his able lieutenants in overcoming these problems.

He further appealed to the Electoral commission to review the composition of the sub district structures, especially reducing the membership strength the Unit Committees to make them more functional for a successful local government election in the year.

The Minister for Local Government and Rural Development (MLGRD), Julius Debrah, throwing light on one key challenge facing local government administration in Ghana to be funding, said that it is difficult to predict the release of District Assemblies Common Fund and charged the leaders of the astute Local Government Association to consider other ways of generating funds to deliver the much needed development projects to the Ghanaian people.

He also called on all delegates to elect credible leaders who will take decisions that would go a long way to strengthen the Association and make it impact on the activities of District Assemblies.

According to Mr. Debrah, it is has become important that NALAG take up its participatory role in local governance in Africa and should remain relevant among its colleague Associations.

In his final words, he pledged the support and collaboration of the Ministry to the association in achieving a common voice of all MMDA’s.

Most of the delegates expressed great delight in the Extra-Ordinary Conference and acknowledged that it is one of the best Conferences they have attended.

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