Mr. Daniel Kwaku Botwe, Local Government Minister, has charged Assembly Members to engage with their electorates in line with the local government Act to ensure effective functioning of the assemblies.
He said just as Metropolitan, Municipal and District Chief Executives (MMDCEs) have their roles to play under the local government Act so are the assembly members.
“One of the key functions is to engage with their electorates periodically to explain assembly policies and programmes to the people,” he said.
That, he added, would strengthen local people understanding of the programmes and policies of the Assemblies in line with the government’s agenda and position them to fully support and participate in accelerated development.
Citing Act 963 of the local government Act, which talks about the duties of Assembly members, Mr Botwe indicated that in the wisdom of the framers of the Constitution all the functionaries of the local government have a role to play to enhance the decentralisation system for effective service delivery.
Speaking at Adukrom during the confirmation of the Okere District Chief Executive (DCE) nominee, he charged assembly members to be prepared to work in line with their functions as stipulated in the local government Act.
He noted that the law spelt out many infractions because people did not understand the law, adding “if people know the functions of the assemblies well then they can be held accountable and that hinges very much on the Assembly members engaging their electorates”.
For instance, he said siting of containers and kiosks indiscriminately had become an issue everywhere in the country and described it as a two-side of the same coin.
“However ensuring the right thing to be done must not be family or partisan matter but a matter of law and principle and I strongly believe that if people understand, in most cases, they would abide by the law,” he stated.
Article 243 of the 1992 Constitution outlines the duties and mandate of the MMDCEs and stresses that “the MMDCEs are the representatives of the government in their respective areas and therefore must be given the needed support to spearhead government’s agenda and vision for the benefit of the people.”
He commended the Assembly members for unanimously confirming the president’s nominee, Mr. Daniel Kenneth, for a second term and expressed the hope that all other assemblies would do the same to make way for development.
“Assembly members cannot take the assembly to ransom.”
Mr. Dan Botwe, who is also the Member of Parliament (MP) for Okere, praised the chiefs and people of the area for their tremendous support which had seen massive developmental projects within a short time of the creation of the district, citing the ultra-modern Assembly office building yet to be commissioned.