The Deputy Eastern Regional Minister, Mr Samuel Nuertey Ayertey has called for a collective effort to do away with the bottlenecks that tend to hinder the effective operations of zonal councils.
He said it was also imperative that more efforts were made to promote citizen’s participation and inclusion in service delivery in the local governance process.
He explained that as a country, we cannot effectively develop and address our local community needs if we do not adhere to tenets of the decentralization and make it practicable.
Mr Ayertey made the remarks at a panel discussion on enhancing the performance of zonal councils and inclusion of local communities in service delivery.
It was organised by 4-H Ghana with funding from Star Ghana and the New Juaben South Municipal Assembly as implementing partner.
The programme was intended to enhance the interface between communities in the local government sub-structures and duty bearers and promote active participation of marginalized groups in local governance.
The project, was being implemented in four zonal councils in the New Juaben South Municipal area including Zongo, Anlo Town l, Sukowa and Adweso Zonal Councils.
The project, when completed, will help increase participation of excluded and vulnerable people including the youth, women and People with Disabilities (PWD’s) in the local governing process.
It would also ensure satisfactory services delivery, increases in revenue mobilization as well as increase in beneficiaries of the disability fund.
Mr Ayertey said the assemblies were overburdened with trivial issues, because the sub-structures of the local government system were not functioning as required.
He indicated that if the assemblies were adequately resourced to execute their roles and responsibilities successfully, there would be significant development in the communities.
The New Juaben South Municipal Chief Executive, Mr Isaac Apaw-Gyasi said since the establishment of the zonal councils, they have played significant roles in the governance of the state at the grass root level.
He indicated that despite the enormous roles the zonal councils play in governance at the local level, they are faced with enormous challenges, adding that, the performance of zonal councils in the New Juaben South is very abysmal due to such challenges.
He said it would take conscientious efforts by all major stakeholders to revamp and build the zonal councils to ensure that they were effective and efficient in helping to promote effective service delivery.