Stakeholders in decentralisation must ensure quality services to all: Uutoni

Key stakeholders in decentralisation have a collective responsibility to ensure that all the people of this country are provided with the quality and quantity of public goods and services.

This is according to Urban and Rural Development Minister, Erastus Uutoni, who said that it is of vital that stakeholders continue to harmonise and strengthen multi-levelled coordination mechanisms between the central and subnational organs of the government.

‘It is a commonly accepted fact that proper coordination removes duplication of efforts and wastage of resources on the one hand, whereas, on the other hand, it promotes efficiency in resource utilisation and synergies across and between sectors.

This position is so much in harmony with the general principle of shared responsibility, and complementarity as well as cooperation between different levels of government as stipulated in the African Charter on the Values and Principles of Decentralisation, Local Governance and Local Development, Uutoni noted.

The minister
made these remarks on Tuesday at the 2024 Annual Consultative Decentralisation Forum taking place in Swakopmund.

The meeting is taking place under the theme ‘Towards the full implementation of the Decentralisation Policy in Namibia’ and provides an opportunity for the Ministry of Urban and Rural Development (MURD), Regional Councils, Line Ministries and other partner government institutions, as key role players in the implementation of the Decentralisation Policy, to reflect and assess the progress made thus far.

The forum is also a platform to share best practices and ideas, discuss challenges that are being encountered and most importantly, to collectively formulate strategies and remedial measures to overcome any such challenges going forward.

As a demonstration of government’s resolve to ensure that the decentralisation policy is effective, MURD commissioned a study through an independent consultancy to assess the national status of the implementation of the policy as per the Harambee Prosperity Plan I

This is expected to be completed during the third quarter of this financial year 2024/25.

Adopted in 1997, the Decentralisation Policy provides the basis and a framework for the Government to devolve functions, responsibilities, powers and resources to the lower levels of Government namely regional and local governments.

The meeting ends on Thursday.

Source: The Namibia Press Agency