Upon assumption of duty as the Head of the Local Government Service (LGS), Dr. Nana Ato Arthur paid courtesy calls on the leadership of some key stakeholder institutions of LGS in Accra. They were: The Office of the Head of the Civil Service (OHCS); National Association of Local Authorities of Ghana (NALAG); Institute of Local Government Studies (ILGS); and the Civil and Local Government Staff Association of Ghana (ClOGSAG).

The visits by the Head of Service were to among other things introduce himself as the new Head of Service, discuss possible areas of mutual interest and collaboration as well as share what he brings on board (vision) with these stakeholders. Accompanying the Head of Service were the Chief Director, Mr. Joseph Dasanah, and senior officers of the Office of the Head of the Local Government Service (OHLGS).

Dr. Arthur’s first port of call was on the Head of Civil Service, Nana Agyekum Dwamena who commended the LGS for the successes chalked over the years. He praised the Service for its policy frameworks especially the Service Delivery Standards which has brought about remarkable improvement in service delivery at the sub-national levels. He underscored the important role of LGS in the attainment of Ghana’s Decentralisation agenda and said, he is ever ready to support the Service in that regard.

At the Institute of Local Government Studies, the Head of Service met the Director of the Institute, Dr. Dadson Awunyo-Vitor and his Departmental Heads. Dr. Arthur said his visit was to strengthen ties between the two institutions. Dr. Awunyo-Vitor indicated that the institute had developed a number of proposals for training and capacity building which synchronises with the vision of the Head of Service and appealed to Dr. Arthur for the institute to be given the opportunity to share with the Service. He also proposed that ILGS be given the opportunity to assess the Performance Management Contract (PMC) documents of the LGS to enable them develop viable indicators for improved revenue mobilisation.

At the National Association of Local Authorities of Ghana, Dr. Nana Ato Arthur met the Acting NALAG Chairman, Mr. Mathias Doglo and his Executives. The Association commended the Service for the role played with regards to the adoption of the Sector-Wide Approach (SWAp) to decentralisation in the country. Mr. Doglo outlined a number of sister city collaborations initiated by the Association over the years to ensure bench marking and sharing of best practices for effective decentralisation practice. The Association expressed concern on the non-functionality of the sub-district structures as well as the need to involve Assembly Members in development planning.

The Executives of CLOGSAG were elated with the HoS’ visit. According to them, Dr. Nana Ato Arthur had visited them at a time the Association needed to address pertinent issues within the Service. Among the issues raised by the association were the number of years taken for staff of the LGS to be promoted, upgrading, LGS’ collaboration with Civil Service misplacement of officers and unhealthy staff relationships among others. The Executive Secretary of the Association, Mr. Isaac Bampoe Addo, suggested the need to have a closer look at these concerns of Staff to ensure lasting solution.

Dr. Arthur expressed his appreciation to the Heads of the institutions visited for their unflinching support to the Service over the years. He pledged to interact and deliberate regularly with stakeholders to strengthen working relationship and foster development. He promised to have a critical look at the concerns raised in order to bring finality to those issues.

Dr. Arthur’s vision which he shared with the stakeholders was encapsulated in five key thematic areas – ensuring transparency and accountability in the management of RCCs and MMDAs; ensuring proper fundamentals are put in place for smooth elections of District Chief Executives; strategically positioning MMDAs for the implementation of the One-District-One-Factory programme; empowering RCCs & MMDAs on best practices in administration, development planning and management; and improved revenue mobilisation through workable ICT units in the MMDAs. He called for their full support to see to the realization of his vision.

Dr Nana Ato Arthur officially assumed duty as Head of the Local Government Service in April 3rd, 2017. He took over from Dr Callistus Mahama, who served in that capacity for four (4) years.

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