Minister Dharamlall calls for a strong Local Gov’t system in Region 3

Minister of Local Government and Regional Development, Nigel Dharamlall, M.P, encouraged Neigbourhood Democratic Councils (NDC) of Region Three, to recommit themselves to community development, to build a strong local government system.

He made the statement Wednesday while engaging officials at the Regional Democratic Council (RDC). He said NDCs are government on the ground, as they have a responsibility to service the needs of residents within their constituencies on a community level.

“I want you to renew and redouble your will on why you were elected to serve these people. People actually put trust in us at the local level that we are going to do good for them. We are not in this job to do good for ourselves because you are the government on the ground, it means that you have to represent President Ali.

So, whatever you do in your community must be with greatest respect to His Excellency, and you know our president is working assiduously to bring benefit to every single person in this country.”

He reiterated government’s commitment to improving the lives of citizens through the provision of equitable services.

“We are a poor people government, and so NDCs are really for the poor people to get a voice… so, decision – making at the local level has to be adaptive, and it also has to be very flexible.”

The ministry will be implementing a series of measures to ensure that NDC chairpersons and overseers do their jobs efficiently, and effectively for the benefit and enhancement of people.

Chairpersons are expected to ensure collection of rates and taxes are increased. Overseers within the NDCs are also expected to be on the fields overlooking work. Government is going to be monitoring the period in which house plan applications are approved. They are also going to commence the auditing of all internal books collection of all local government department reports from across the regions. All registration books, as well are expected to be updated.

The minister urged the NDCs to utilise their subvention to “make people’s lives more comfortable” as “the government, we will be doing all the heavy lifting.”

To this end, the government has allocated an additional $2 billion towards the rehabilitation of community roads.

Additionally, government will be providing all NDCs with tractors for community development. Excavators will also be provided to the RDC.

Meanwhile, NDCs were also encouraged to identify public areas in need of rehabilitation to facilitate ‘safe spaces’ for families. Vacant land within the various NDCs should also be identified to be used as landfills to mitigate garbage complaints and expenses.

The ministry will be implementing a programme within the next three months which will provide the necessary resources to manicure the grounds of burial facilities.  In conjunction with the Ministry of Public Works, NDCs will commence removing derelict vehicles on the public roads.

At the end of the year, the ministry will host a conference to gather all chairpersons and overseers, where challenges faced will be addressed to “build a strong local government.”

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