Ministers in charge of local governance from five East African Community countries will gather in Kampala, Uganda, from Thursday March 5th to consider how their countries can work together to improve service delivery at local level.
A statement from the conference organizers at the United Nations Department for Economic and Social Affairs says participants will share information and best practices on local governance issues, as well as on their policies and strategies for achieving the Millennium Development Goals. They will identify ways in which they can mutually complement local governance policies, systems and actions to improve the delivery of public goods and services.
John-Mary Kauzya, chief of governance and public administration at the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs, says the exchange of knowledge, information and experiences, is critical if the East African Community is to address common challenges and deliver more effective and efficient services to citizen.
The Kampala meeting is part of the United Nations sustained support to the decentralization process in Africa, through the work of its agencies and program.
In Uganda, the process of decentralization is traced back to the establishment of the Resistance Council system in 1986. In October 1992 President Yoweri Museveni officially launched the national decentralization program. It was turned into policy and included in the Constitution of Uganda and the 1997 Local Government Act.
The decentralization reform process in Uganda is often hailed around the world as a good example of full-fledged devolution of power with the transfer of far-reaching responsibilities to local governments. However, several shortcomings, such as low levels of accountability, insufficient human and financial resources, corruption, patronage, constrain the proper implementation of the reform.
east african community