Government urged to review decentralisation structures to make them effective

Mr Robert Van Ess, Water and Sanitation Expert on Thursday called for the review of rules and regulations governing decentralised structures in the country to ensure their long term sustainability and effectiveness.

This, he said would ensure harmonisation of projects and adherence to rules concerning water and sanitation from the regional to district levels.

“Rules and regulations of decentralisation should be revisited, properly defined and formalised to ensure that the processes of making water available to people at the district level were adhered to,” he said.

Mr Van Ess who was delivering a paper on “Access to Water at the District Level,” in the country expressed concern about lack of concern exhibited by some district assemblies as far as water provision for their people was concerned.

The research was sponsored by Sustainable Services at Scale (Triple –T ), an international non-governmental organisation funded by Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, aimed at providing water supply to the rural poor.

It was undertaken for a period of three months (August to October 2011) in seven towns and villages including Savelugu, Nanton, Yendi, Denkyira, Ahafo Ano South and Twifo Heman.

Mr Van Ess called on the Community Water and Sanitation Agency (CWSA) to play critical roles in the provision of water to people at the district level.

He noted that CWSA had played its facilitation role effectively at the district level in the implementation of Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) policy.

“It is rather saddening that the WASH projects have not featured strongly in the co-ordination, monitoring and evaluation of the development projects at the Regional Co-ordinating Councils.”

Mr Van Ess noted that there are no formalised post project monitoring and evaluation policies in place at the district levels to ensure that projects are carried out effectively.

He expressed disappointment about instances when procurements and funds disbursement under some projects had been carried out with little or no involvement of the district assemblies .

“District Assemblies do not see themselves in full control of projects implementation and that their sub structures are not playing any role in WASH activities.”

Mr Van Ess said it was discovered that about 80 per cent of Water and Sanitation Committees in communities in Ga South Municipal Assembly were reported to be ineffective development boards.

Source: GNA

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