The Tema Metropolitan Assembly in the Greater Accra Region has topped the 2015 Ghana District League Table (DLT), as the best district with the most improved service delivery, having scored 77 per cent.
La Nkwantanang-Madina Municipal, also in Greater Accra, which was ranked first in the 2014 DLT, was second, with 76.4 per cent in this year’s ranking.
Gomoa West District in the Central Region, which ranked the 208th position in last year’s DLT, had the lowest score of 36.8 per cent in 2015 DLT, taking the 216th position.
The DLT, initiated by the Centre for Democratic Governance (CDD) and UNICEF in collaboration with the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development in 2014, has been designed to increase social accountability for development across the Country’s 216 districts, while improving responsiveness in service delivery.
It is a simple tool that ranks the level of development in each of the districts with aggregates development indicators in six key sectors made up of health, education, sanitation, water, security and governance.
The district indicators which were assessed were BECE pass rate, skilled delivery at birth, rural water coverage, open defecation free certification, Police personnel coverage and fulfillment of District administrative Foat minimum conditions.
At the launching of the League Table in Accra on Wednesday, Ms Sarah Hague, Chief of Social Policy at UNICEF Ghana who presented the scores, said this year, 105 districts scored below the national average score of 56, compared to 95 districts that scored below the average last year, meaning that less districts were keeping pace with overall development.
The most improved district between 2014 and 2015 was Kwaebibirem in the Eastern region, with 98 districts, having improved their ranking in the DLT as compared to last year.
Ms Haque said the 2015 league table could intensify the scrutiny of Ghana’s development, highlighting inequity across districts and also be used to better allocate resources so that individual districts that ranked low could be better supported.
She said other indicators like transport, housing, malnutrition and few others could be discussed by various stakeholders to be considered in the DLT for subsequent years, saying that would also be based on the availability of data on such indicators.
In 2014, Tano South in the Brong Ahafo Region took the first place with a score of 76 per cent, while Karaga District in the Northern Region took the last position of 216th place with a score of 15 per cent.
The Ashanti and Brong Ahafo Regions featured most prominently among the top districts, whilst Volta and Northern Regions were found at the bottom of the league.
No district from the North is found in the top 20 districts.
Mrs Susan Ngongi, UNICEF Representative, expressed the hope that the league would help identify which areas of the country needed the most development assistance.
Dr Franklin Oduro, Deputy Director of CDD-Ghana, asked the media not to use the league table as a naming and shaming mechanism, but as a tool to investigate further issues that have come up and help solve the needs of the people.
He said the league table aims to support both policy-makers and citizens in understanding the state of development and service delivery across all of the 216 districts and identify obstacles such as access to information and national inequities.
Nii Lantey Vanderpuiye, the Deputy Minister of Local Government and Rural Development, who launched the report, said the Ministry considered the League as a social accountability mechanism, demanding accountability, on district, regional, and national levels.
“The league provides vital information for local governance and opportunity for development partners to apportion assistance to needed districts”, he said.
Ms Elizabeth Ohene, a former Minister of State, who chaired the launching, charged the media to do the necessary follow-ups and see whether the local communities and districts were having the needed impact of the changes in service delivery to their areas.