Cape Coast – Sunday January 30, 2022: The Head of the Local Government Service, Ing. Dr. Nana Ato Arthur was among government functionaries who participated in the opening of a  3-day  zonal refresher course in Leadership and Management for Sixty-Nine (69) Metropolitan, Municipal and District Chief Executive (MMDCEs) drawn from the Eastern, Central and Western Regions.

The programme was organised under the auspices of the Ministry of Local Government, Decentralisation and Rural Development in collaboration with the Institute of Local Government Studies.

The refresher course among other things is aimed at ensuring that the MMDCES reflect on their three (3) months experience on the job; share their experiences for feedback; deepen their understanding on local governance and development management as well as requirements for managing their respective local governments with business mindsets of effectiveness, efficiency, value for money, social justice and inclusivity.

The welcome address was delivered by the Honourable Minister for the Central Region, Hon. Justina Marigold Assan who entreated the MMDCEs to approach the programme with all seriousness and endeavor to participate and contribute meaningfully to discussions and topics treated.

She reminded them of the need for the local authorities to compliment the efforts of central government in pursuance of its developmental agenda. This she said, could be achieved effectively through the intensification of their activities as a unified front and to support government with their rich and diverse backgrounds for accelerated growth and sustainable development. In the quest for nation building, Hon. Assan entreated the MMDCEs to strive to improve their relationship with the citizenry at the grassroots level.

In his address, the Minister for Local Government, Decentralisation and Rural Development, Hon. Daniel Botwe noted that, the refresher course was timely and ties in perfectly with the call for enhanced competencies and leadership skills to enable MMDCEs deliver on their mandate. He expressed the Ministry’s determination to prioritize training and development of MMDCEs. He hinted that measures are being put in place to ensure the Institute of Local Government Studies (ILGS) is retooled and revamped to be able to provide structural training to all categories of local government functionaries and staff. Various executive courses according to him are being designed to expand their capacities to lead, inspire and achieve.

Hon. Botwe also disclosed that the Ministry has initiated processes to develop an ICT-based feedback system known as the DASHBOARD to facilitate direct engagement with MMDCEs on pertinent issues in all the MMDAs. According to him, all MMDCEs would be required under this system to provide updates on their deliberative and administrative functions; Local Economic Development; Revenue Mobilisation and Management; Infrastructure, Social Services as well as special initiatives and other flagship programmes. He reiterated the Ministry’s commitment to support MMDCEs to discharge their mandates effectively and efficiently.

Hon Botwe further informed that Honourable Assembly and Presiding Members would be next to trained on leadership to enable them provide effective oversight and representation of their local constituents.

Some of the training modules delivered on the first day of the programme include Managing District Assemblies as Businesses; strengthening key stakeholder relationships and the sub-district structures; Public Procurement, Projects and Contract Management. Other modules to be treated include: Ghana’s Local Governance, Decentralisation and Public Management; Local Government Revenues, Disbursement and Management of Public Funds; Sector-wide initiatives and imperatives for MMDCEs; Performance-based grant system for MMDA (DPAT/DACF-RFG); Performance contracts of MMDCDs and LGS staff Performance Management Systems as individual staff assessment tools.

It is expected that the MMDCEs at the end of the course would have improved knowledge, broader perspectives and analytical rigor on local governance and local level issues. The zonal refresher course is a follow-up training to the national orientation organised for all MMDCEs in Accra from October 26 to 30, 2021.

Zonal refresher courses would also be organised for MMDCEs in three (3) different centres in the Sunyani, Ho and Tamale from February 5 to February 21, 2021.

Present at the programme were the three Deputy Ministers  of the Ministry of Local Government, Decentralisation and Rural development, the Director and Registrar of the Institute of Local Government Studies, Director of Human Resource at the Office of the Head of the Local Government Service and Directors and officers from the MLGDRD.

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