May 11 2021
BALA is now, albeit in a small way, is transformed into a mirror of what an organized local government that is apposite on promotion and deepening of local governance and democracy; through advocacy for robust decentralization and capacity building of its membership for the pursuance of the same; not only focusing on the narrow perspective of welfare issues but these brought objective ought to be. Its visibility raised not only locally, but also sub regionally, regionally and internationally to a point of serving in the leadership of sub reginal, regional bodies; such as UCLG Africa, ICLEI Local Government for Sustainability, UCLG World Body, CLGF, Global Task Force of LOCAL and Regional Government to be UN High Level Political Forum and United Nations Advisory Committee on Local Authorities amongst others.
Albeit challenges of uncertainty of policy environment with the Ministry 0f Local Government Rural Development and BALA was amongst able to:
- Be establish through the act of parliament and transformed from a voluntary society.
- Established standing financing formula through the parent ministry and membership rightly bestowed upon local authorities not local councilors.
- Instituted and constituted focused commissions for its work
- Developed a handbook for councillors
- Developed a code of conduct for councillor
- Supported by Commonwealth Local Government Forum and United Nation Development Programme completed the development of a National LED Framework which present a guiding principle as well as a catalyst for local economic growth. As the framework was piloted in four districts only, plans are an advanced stage for roll out to the rest of the districts. In order to attain the aspirations of the new global development agendas, we forged partnerships that will enable enhance and attainment of capacity with various organisations such as Commonwealth Local Government Forum (CLGF), United Cities and Local Government(UCLG).
World Body and UCLD Africa, It is against this backdrop that during the period BALA rekindled a relationship with ICLEI Local Government for Sustainability to work on issues of climate change to ensure protection of the planet, negotiated a Memorandum of Understanding with National Food Technology Research Center(NFRTC) for purposes of carrying out the necessary research to inform value chain mapping for economic resource exploitation for prosperity and communities (Houmoed Kokotsha Horse Racing Club) for purposes of contextualising to be at the pole position of local economic development localities.
We currently been working for government and stake holders on finilisation of a decentralization policy for the country Decentralization, and the empowerment of local authorities has been identified as critical in realizing the vision of transformation for a fairer, more resilient,equitable and sustainable future for all. Local Authorities are key partner for government to implement development and economic programmers. Many government across the word have taken on the principle of subsidiarity which has lid to ongoing efforts to strengthen the capacity of local and regional government, so that decisions can be taken at the most local or immediate level possible. Due to their proximity to the people, local authorities are best placed to identify where the needs are and to form the required partnership to transform people lives. For effective development to be realized, the needs and priorities of the people have to be collectively and clearly defined locally through effective participation by communities, thus leaving no one and no place behind.
If the objective of leaving one behind which is envisaged by the SDGs is to be achieved, local
authorities must be empowered to effectively engage all people at the local level. This means paying attention to all voice including women, youth, the poor, the displaced, and local government is the sphere of government which is best placed to play this role strengthening local democracy and governance is essential if the transformative development agenda is to be achieved. To achieve all these noble pursuits, at the centre of it all is need for robust leadership.
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