Local Government Leaders Blame Government For Election Loss

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Francis Kibuuka Amooti, the Mubende LC V chairperson, says that it’s unfortunate that local governments have been disempowered by the central government making them less effective.
UGLA members are in Kasese District this week for thier annual general meeting

Audio 7

District LC V Chairpersons have blamed the government for their poor performance in the just concluded local government elections. They accuse the government of failing them in service delivery through the weak decentralization practice that makes them mere supervisors of government projects.

They argue that the current decentralization policy is crippling effective to the electorates by the local governments. The policy requires the local governments to collect local revenue and send it to the central government to determine, which amount to send back for service delivery. They argue that most of them were voted out of office because the electorate deemed them non-performers. 

Over 120 LCV chairpersons lost their seats in the local government elections. Francis Kibuuka Amooti, the Mubende LC V chairperson, says that it’s unfortunate that local governments have been disempowered by the central government making them less effective.

He says currently the central government implements service delivery programs, which has resulted in low output to the chagrin of the communities. Kibuka says local leaders have paid a heavy price for the disservice done by the government.  

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John Kisoke Byamukama, the Kyegegwa LC V chairperson told URN that they collect low revenue, which they pass to the government to decide how to spend it. He says that quite often government delays implementing development programs, which rises anger among the electorate.    //Cue in: “The issue of decentralization…

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Titus Kisambira, the Jinja LC V chairperson says local budgets are controlled and superimposed by the center making local governments mere watchdogs. He says the government has often been slow to respond to local government needs yet the electorate expects the local leaders to act or else they face the exit. 

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John Michael Okurut, the outgoing Paliisa District chairperson is worried that even when parliament has passed the creation of more administrative units, most of them don’t even have resources for operation.  The chairperson has chosen to mobilize his colleagues to petition the government on the matter.

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Kabarole District Chairperson, Richard Rwabuhinga argues that the current environment doesn’t favour them to perform as they should. He says a number of leaders are now in partnerships with civil society organisations-CSOs so that they can vividly be seen to perform.

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Sam Mulomi, who lost the Budaka LC V seat to Emmanuel Pajje, feels the district chairpersons are unable to give proper accountability to the electorate when most of the work is directed by the central government, which controls key financial and technical resources.   

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Wilson Watira, the Bududa LC V chairperson says there is a need for parliament to propose reforms in the decentralization policy if districts are to deliver as expected.

Swizin Mugema, the Commissioner in charge of local government development in the Ministry of Local Government says there is a need for leaders to engage both the ministry and parliament if any reforms are to be made to the decentralization policy.

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