The Minister of Local Government and Rural Development Mr. Tamba Lamina spoke to final year students on National Affairs Reporting at the Mass Communications Department at Fourah Bah College about the state of Local Government.
Since he took over as the Minister, Lamina said there was a good reason for the 2004 Local Government Act amendment.
Hon. Lamina said the mandates of the Ministry involve supervising 22 Local Councils and 190 Chiefdoms. The Local Government has made a huge progress, especially under his leadership and by extension the New Direction Government of President Julius Maada Bio.
He talked about the various strides his Ministry has taken to restore dignity in Chieftaincy including increments of their monthly salaries and their involvement in state governance.
He also explained the processes involved in successfully conducting 41 Paramount Chieftaincy Elections across the country and resolving conflicts between 4 Paramount Chiefs and their subjects including Bagruwa Penguia, Futa Pejeh and Lower Banta where the Paramount Chief is set to be returned at any moment from now.
He further talked about other achievements of his Ministry, including the review of the Decentralization Policy, which was launched by Vice President Mohamed Juldeh Jalloh in 2019 and the amendment of the 2004 Local Government Act.
Explaining the reasons why the 2004 Local Government Act was amended, Ambassador Lamina said the spirit of meeting the manifesto commitments of President Bio and the effort to deepen decentralization, the 2004 Local Government Act has been viewed as one that was no longer meeting the felt need of local governance as there were inconsistencies and absurdities, which required clarity with a view to embracing current development.
He later focused his lecture on the different changes that were made in the new Act with detailed explanation of their importance to local governance and decentralization. The lecture ended with a question and answers session that helped to address and further enabled the student to understand other aspects contained in the new Act.