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Inadequate funding impeding decentralization

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The Eastern Regional Minister, Mr Samuel Ofosu-Ampofo, has observed that the greatest challenge of the Local Government system is providing adequate funding to enable the District Assemblies to implement their development projects.

He made the observation when an 11-member senior military delegation from the military staff college on a study tour of the region paid a courtesy call on him at his office in Koforidua, on Tuesday.

The group, made up of six Ghanaians and five foreigners from South Africa, Uganda, Gambia, Togo and Sierra Leone are observing the local government system in the area.

Mr Ofosu-Ampofo said apart from the Internally Generated Fund (IGF), of the district assemblies, the assemblies also benefit from the District Assemblies Common Fund where 7.5 per cent of the national revenue is shared among all the District, Municipal and Metropolitan Assemblies based on a formula approved by Parliament.

He said in recent times, the District Assemblies that use the best practices are also rewarded with additional fund under the District Development Fund.

Mr Ofosu-Ampofo said under a new Local Government Services programme, efforts are being made to make the decentralized departments more responsive to the directives of the District Assembly than to their National Headquarters.

He said the new system is to build the capacity of the District Assemblies to be able to deliver to meet the needs of the people in the districts.

The Regional Minister described the region as the tourist hub of the country in terms of natural tourist resources.

He said the greatest threat to security in the region is illegal mining and illegal felling of tress and said the Regional Co-ordinating Council is seriously fighting these.

Source: GNA

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