Local Gov’t Commission still at committee stage – Minister Harmon
Georgetown, GINA, July 15, 2016
The Local Government Commission is still being discussed at the level of Parliamentary Select Committee set up especially for this purpose, Minister of State, Joseph Harmon told members of the media at his post-Cabinet media briefing on Thursday
Minister Harmon related to members of the media that Cabinet has been informed that the committee is working assiduously and that the commission will soon be established.
“We have been briefed that the committee is working and that they anticipate that within a short space of time, they will be able to come up with some recommendations for the National Assembly itself,” the Minister stated.
Additionally, Minister Harmon pointed out that once Government receives word about a date for the commission’s establishment, it would be made public.
“Certainly when that is finished and the Minister, Dr. (George) Norton who is the chair of that committee reports, then certainly we would make that information available to you,” the Minister explained.
Parliament had approved the creation of the Local Government Commission in 2013, with the expectation that it would play a supportive role to the Ministry of Communities as it relates to dealing with such issues as staffing of Local Government Organs (LGOs) and disputes among local authorities.
The previous Minister with responsibility for Local Government, however, never issued a Commencement Order for the Local Government Commission Act to take effect and for the Commission to become operationalised. However, funding was provided for its establishment in the 2016 National Budget. The Local Government Commission, a constitutional body, will have eight members.
Minster of Communities, Ronald Bulkan had expressed confidence that the Commission will be capable of playing a very active and vibrant role to support the work of the LGOs. The commission will be able to strengthen the system of local government and local administration.