Administration and Governance
The Structure of the Assembly
The various legal framework for local development in Ghana include, the civil service Law, 1993 (PNDC Law 327), the National Development Planning (System) Law, 1994 (Acts 480) and the local government Law, 1993 (Act 462). All of these legal enactments place the Assembly in the center to reinforce the government’s decentralization process and participatory development. Thus the assembly, by law is the highest administrative and political body in the Municipality. It composed of 72 members of whom two-thirds are elected while the remaining are appointed. The two members of parliament are ex-officio members. The government, with two-thirds approval of members of the Assembly at a sitting appoints the Municipal Chief Executive as the political and administrative head of the Municipal Assembly.
Nzema East municipal has an executive committee made up of 27 members. They formulate and executive policies of the Assembly. The MCE representing the central governments chairs the committee. It operated through the following sub-committees of the assembly:
- Finance and Administration Sub-Committee
- Social Service Sub Committee
- Development Sub-Committee
- Works Sub-Committee
- Justice and Security Sub-Committee
- Municipal Environmental Management Sub-Committee
- Municipal Tourism Sub-Committee
The sub-committees principally deliberate on specific issues and recommends to the Executive Committee, which in turn presents them to the Assembly for ratification and adoption. The executive committee co-ordinators plans and programmes of sub-committees and oversees the smooth operation of the administration. It also has the power to recommend the appointment or replacement of officials in the district. The municipal assembly as authority is responsible for the overall development of the municipal. There is a municipal planning Coordinating Unit, which provides advisory services to the Executive Committee in its planning functions.
Area Councils and unit committees are pivotal in local level development as they ferry the Assembly and local community and act as the supreme points of development at the local levels. There are 10 area councils and one urban council. The Municipal Chief Executive heads the office of the Municipal Assembly. There are 11 departments under the office of the assembly. The activities of these departments are co-o-coordinated by the Municipal Co-ordinating Director.
The Municipal Assembly
.I. No. 1639 established the Nzema East Municipal in 1988. It is the highest political authority in the municipal under Section 10 of the Local Government Act 1993 (Act 462). The Assembly exercises deliberative, legislative and Executive functions in the municipal. The Assembly is empowered by Act to be responsible for the overall development of the municipal through the preparation of development plans and related budget. The Assembly is also to implement, monitor and evaluate programme, strategies and projects for effective mobilization of resources for development. The National Development Planning (System) Law, 1993 (Act 480) clearly spells out the functions of the municipal Assembly. All these legal enactments re-enforces the pivotal role of the Municipal Assembly in the government’s decentralization and participatory development process. However, the municipals’ capacity to adhere to the above planning system is constrained by the lack of skilled personnel and inadequate resources and logistics to the departments, and the DPCU, which is responsible for the co-ordination of the entire planning activities of the Assembly.
Composition of the Municipal Assembly
The Nzema East Municipal Assembly in consonance with the Local Government Act 1993 (Act 462) is composed of the Municipal Chief Executive who is appointed by Government and approved by 2/3 majority of the members of the Assembly, the two members of Parliament from the two constituencies of the Municipal and Assembly members. The 48 Assembly members are elected from the 48 electoral areas through universal adult suffrage and the remaining appointed by government in consultation with the Traditional Authority and other interested groups. The Presiding Member is elected by 2/3 majority of all the members of the Assembly. There are 10 Area Councils and 1 Urban Council. The district has 146 Unit Committees with an estimated membership of 1,648.
Implication for Development
The lack of adequate skilled personnel and logistics for the decentralized departments and the MPCU will have serious repercussion on the Assembly’s capacity to implement, monitor and evaluate the MTDP and undertake further participatory development planning. The MPCU therefore need to be expanded and adequately resourced to effectively execute its mandate on behalf of the assembly.
Of the eleven Urban and Area Councils under the Assembly, only four are functioning effectively. Out of the 146 unit committees, less than a quarter are operational. All though, the Assembly recruited and staffed all the Area Councils, its inability to pay their remuneration had resulted in vacation of post and low morale among staff of the Area Councils. The lack of logistics and suitable offices has also resulted in low performance of the councils. Lack of motivation on the part of unit committee members had led to loss of interest in the work of the committees. It can be seen from the diagram (4) that both Assembly members and the sub-structure play very crucial roles at all levels of legislation and planning. As prescribed under Act 462 and L.I. 1589, the functions of the Assembly through the Area Councils and Unit Committees make these sub-structures pivotal links between the Assembly and the grassroots.
Effective participatory development planning and the ability of the Assembly to implement the MTDP will greatly depend on the quality and capacities of the Assembly members and more so the sub-structures. It is worthy to note that of the 48 elected Assembly members, 38 members are completely new, and only 10 old members were re-elected. All the Area Councils and Unit Committee have been re-constituted. There is there, the need to strengthen the capacities of these players to effectively play their expected roles. The Assembly should also build their capacities to enable them collect and collate the views and aspirations of the people they represent for intervention. This would ensure community participation as an integral part of the planning process.
The Nzema East municipal has six paramountcies under the Nzema Manle Traditional Council with its headquarters at Esiama. Under each of these paramountcies are Divisional Chiefs and below them are Odikros. These Traditional Authorities command the respect of large numbers of their people and communities particularly in the rural areas. They are dedicated to the development of their traditional areas and the education and enlightenment of their people. They have a part to plan in facilitating government policies and mobilizing their people for development, of particular importance is the role of the traditional authorities in support of land administration reform, a key factor in economic growth and in the protection of the vulnerable and excluded.
This offers positive contribution to economic and social transformation. Traditional Authority can therefore be regarded as part of the decentralization process. The Municipal Assembly would there strengthen its partnership with Traditional Authority to provide a mechanism for consultation and co-operation. Although traditional authority plays a very important role in the development of the municipal, the existence of as many as six paramountcies within the Nzema East municipal alone possess great challenge for consensus building.
The presence of numerous chieftaincy disputes and land litigations have adversely affected the pace of the municipal’s development. Efforts would be made to minimize these disputes and promote consensus building. The current population of the municipal (according to the 2000 population censuses) is 142,959 (males 71673 and females 71,198) constituting 7.40% of the Western Regional population with a growth rate of 2.7%
Administration of Justice
The municipal has a magistrate court with a magistrate in attendance. There are eight (8) Police Stations with the headquarters at Axim. The Commission for Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ) adjudicates on human rights infringements where as the Public Relations and Complaints Units under the Chairmanship of the Presiding Member of the Municipal Assembly hears complaints against Assembly members and public officers in the performance of their duties. These institutions need to be strengthened and resourced to protect the rights of the people and ensure justice and accountability.
Civil Society plays a very important role in the development of Nzema East municipal. Participation by other stakeholders is manifested at the levels of information sharing, consultation, collaboration and empowerment. To ensure public ownership of the Assembly’s development agenda it is necessary that avenues be created for stakeholders and other parties with contributions to get involved in the whole process. This is the effective way to generate true sustainability and public support for the development process. The municipal assembly has instituted channels for consultations with stakeholders at the District, Area Council and Community levels. These include public fora and information dissemination and public education by I.S.D and NCCE. A number of initiatives have been undertaken to promote participation of other stakeholders especially NGO’S, CBO’S and the private sector in the development process of the municipal. These include:
S. I. P. A
The Sanitation Improvement Programme for Axim (S. I. P.A.) is a platform for collaborative problem solving, involving the private sector, Civil Society groups and the Municipal Assembly towards Sanitation improvement in Axim. It is a capacity building programme implemented by SNV and later COSPE.
The Gwira Banso Joint Forest Management Project (GBJFMP) is a collaborative resources management project sponsored by CARE INTERNTIONAL and its local partners FRIENDS OF THE NATION the implementation of this project is addressing the issues of land tenure, ownership of resources on the land and sustainable management of resources.
The Private Sector is not well developed in the Municipality. It is predominantly, Micro and Small-Scale Processors, Artisans and Service Providers. Although the Municipality has enormous potential for tourism and agro-industry, the inadequate nature of infrastructure and basic utilities increases cost of doing business. There is no platform for public-private interface.
Public – Private Partnership needs to be promoted. The Assembly would create the necessary enabling environment for the growth of the private sector. Inadequate logistics and poor accessibility have cut off a significant number of people in the Municipality from active participation in governance and access to information.
Currently, there is only one radio station (i.e. Ankobra FM). The lack of logistics and funds have constrained the Assembly’s ability to adopt the participatory development planning process to promote transparency of Assembly decisions and ensure accountability from both public and private sectors. More collaboration, consultation and information sharing would be promoted with Traditional Authority, Civil Society of Nzema East Municipality as well as the Western Regional Network of NGOs (WERENGO) and private sector organizations)
Collection of Internal Revenue for the Assembly is the responsibility of the Municipal Finance Officer, Methods of collection include deployment of revenue collectors through the area councils in the Municipality. Of the 36 revenue collectors, 10 are permanent salaried staff of the Assembly, while the remaining 26 are commission – based collectors with the Finance Officer staff undertaking purely accounting duties. Although it has been observed that both Internal and External revenue increased over the 2008 – 2009 period, the performance for other grants from external sources like CBRDP, NGOs and donors is very poor. Efforts must be made to create an enabling environment to attract more NGOs the private sector and other donors to complement the efforts of the Municipality. Existing links must also be strengthened with the Municipalities Development Partners to expand their operations.
Problems of Revenue Collection
The major problems confronting revenue collections in the Municipality include:
- Inadequate skilled personnel
- Lack of logistics especially transportation to revenue collection centers
- Poor supervision and monitoring of revenue collectors
- Inefficient revenue collection systems
- Inadequate motivation for revenue staff
The current bysmal revenue performance of the Assembly calls for some stringent measures to help salvage the situation. Consecratory the fact that only about 45% of the project revenue was realized in 2008, it is obvious that the situation might worsen if steps are not taken to address the issue. This is very important considering the erratic flow of the DACF and its associated guidelines, which does not allow for certain usage. In order therefore, for the Assembly to meet its recurrent budget to support its development programmes. Internal revenue mobilization must be improved. Advantage must also be taken of the public-private partnership policy to explore the possibility of private participation in revenue collection, like property rate and the operation and management of facilities like public toilets, markets, guest’s house, water system etc.
The Expenditure of the Municipality budget has been divided into recurrent and capital Expenditure to conform to the conventional budget structure of the local government of Ghana. The recurrent expenditure consists of personal emoluments. Travel and Transport Expenditures, General expenditure, maintenance, repairs and renewals as well as miscellaneous. The capital expenditure consists of all expenditure made on Development Projects and Programmes. This is presented in table (31) for the years.
From the above table, Personal Emolument constituted the highest percentage of Recurrent Expenditure with 39% in 2008. However, it is important to note that this is increase to 56% in 2009. This was a result of prudent fiscal measures and the upward salaries of Public Workers throughout the country. Others followed the same pattern.
However, a further analysis of the details of the various sub-items in 2008 indicated the following:
Running cost and maintenance of official vehicles constituted 85% of the traveling and transport expenditure (4.5%). The plausible explanation may be that most of the vehicles are over aged resulting in high maintenance and running coast. New vehicles should replace the average ones. This expenditure should be closely monitored and a more efficient transport management system should be put in place.
Consideration the importance of sports as a tool for development and the youthful structure of the Municipalies population, sports should be regarded as a development programme and promoted accordingly. The capital expenditure decreased from 53.5% in 2008 80.5% in 2009 showing a decrease of 3%. This situation must be checked and reversed by adopting appropriate strategies to ensure prudent financial management in order to generate adequate Internal Revenue to support the anticipated increase in the Municipal development expenditure and also to be able to apply part of the Internally Generated funds to development projects.
The Municipality is endowed with a number of mineral deposits which are either untapped or underutilized. See Map.
Although, a number of mining companies have applied for and secured mining license in the Municipality. In recent times, however, there has been an influx of Small-Scale Gold Miners popularly called “galamsey” into the Municipality especially around Akango, Bamiankor, Gwira Banso, Kutukrom and Dadwen. Although this have create employment and boosted the local economies it has brought in its’ wake a lot of social challenges. There is also a mechanized quarry plant at Bamiankor producing quarry stones for building and road construction.
Transportation/Communication Analysis and Spatial Organization
The Municipality has a total of 154,1kf trunk roads, out of this, 63.9km are tarred. This represents 41.5% of trunk roads. It must emphasized that this forms part of the Trans-West Africa Highway. The rest of the trunk roads are gravel or earth-surfaced.
Apart from the trunk roads, the Municipal has a total 253km of Feeder Roads. Out of this only 59.3% are motorable. It must be noted that over 70% of these feeder roads can be found in the Southern half of the Municipality. The Municipality capital Axim and a few has telephone system as well as a GSM mobile network.
Transport Unions namely the Ghana Private Road Transport Union (GPRTU) and the Progressive Transport Owners Association (PROTOA) on behalf of the Assembly manage the Lorry Parks in the Municipality. With the exception of Axim facilities for passengers at the Lorry Parks throughout the Municipality are very poor with travelers exposed to the vagaries of the weather.
This primarily relates to the type, number and distribution of facilities and services within the Municipality. It is aimed at assessing the adequately or otherwise of these facilities and services and identifies the disadvantaged or locally deprived areas.
In Nzema East Municipality, there are 112 settlements of which these are classified as Urban namely Axim, Nsein, Bamiankor, Kutukrom and Ayisakro. The classification of urban is based on settlements with a population of 5,000 people as minimum. All these settlements have potentials to grow into big towns especially Ayisakro and Bamiankor due to current commercial and locational advantages as well as the direction of population growth in the Municipality.
The hierarchy of settlements in Nzema East Municipal was determined using a relative centrality of different settlements with regard to the function they perform for the Municipality. To find out the centrality of more important settlements, the presence or absence of 10 different functions in different places was obtained and processed to get a clear picture. Building a matrix called scalogram of settlement in the rows of a matrix and functions in the columns and indicating the presence or absence of functions to this. A population threshold of 500 plus was used to reduce the number of settlements from 112 to 20.
After building the table, the functions and the settlements were ordered in their rank of importance starting with the most abundant function and the settlement, which has the most facilities. In the next step, the centrality score for each function was computed by dividing a score of 100 by the number of times this function is actually present in the Municipality e.g. widely available function like primary school earns a score of 2 i.e. 100 divided by 51 where as a high order function like a training college earns a score of 100. Thus the centrality index for each settlement is summed up.
Based on the summation, the settlements, the settlements are then put in levels of 1,2,3,4, and 5. Level 1 settlement(s) is those with a total function of about 70%. Level 2 settlements are those with a total function of at least 50%, whereas level 3 settlements are those with a minimum of 40%. Level 4 settlements have minimum of 30% and a minimum of 20% for level 5 settlements.
The analysis revealed that apart from Axim, Nsein, Bamiankor, Ayisakro and Nyamebekyere, most other settlements lack basic functions or services such as pipe borne water, health facilities, roads etc. and had to depend on the few settlements mentioned above. Only Axim occupy level (1) one position with Nsein, Bamiankor and Ayisakro being level 2 settlements.
The obvious lopsided effect in the southern part of the Municipality has precipitated in migration from the other parts of the Municipality notably the northern parts. Thus, pressure has been unduly mounted on social services especially housing. The plausible effect is the presence of this poverty plant, measures including provision of basic health care, potable water, feeder roads and electrification projects have been put in place to reverse this trend. The Municipality intends to decentralize political and economic programmes to the northern portions of the Municipality.
The motive for accessibility analysis is to ascertain the case or difficulty with which people within different spatial locations in the Municipality enjoy services located in other parts of the Municipality. In a nutshell, it allow for measurement of over utilization or otherwise of a service. Four services were selected due to their importance in meeting the basic needs of the people in the Municipality as well as enhancing the Micro/Local Economy. They were:
- Periodic Market
- Health Facilities
- Agriculture Extension
- Banking Facility
The accessibility of these functions were determined with following assumptions which were based on observed speed on the various models of transport and type of road links in the Municipality.
First Class Road - 80km/hr
Secondary Trunk Road - 40km/hr
Feeder Road - 30km/hr
Walking - 5km/hr
First Class Road - 30 minutes
Secondary Trunk Road - 1 hr
Feeder Road - 2 hrs
Periodic Market Linkage
There are three periodic markets in the Municipality located in Edelesuazo, Dominase and Kutukrom. As an agrarian Municipality, goods traded in core mainly as agricultural produce come from the catchments areas and sometimes beyond. Manufactured goods are largely imported from outside the Municipality especially from Takoradi and Elubo.
The various legal frameworks for Local Development in Ghana include, the Civil Service Law 1993 (PNDC Law 324) the National Development Planning (System) Law, 1991 (Act) 180) and the Local Government Law, 1993 (Act 462). All of these legal enactments place the Municipal Assembly in the center to reinforce the government’s decentralization process and participatory development.
Thus the Assembly, by law is the highest administrative and political body in the Municipality. It is composed of 32 members of two-thirds are elected while the remaining are appointed. The member of parliament is an ex-officio members.
The government, with two-thirds approval of members of the Assembly at a sitting appoints the Municipal Chief Executive as the political and administrative head of the Municipal Assembly.
Nzema East Municipality has an Executive Committee made up of ….. members. They formulate and execute policies of the Assembly. The Municipal Chief Executive represents the Central Government and chairs the committee. It operates through the following sub-committees of the Assembly.
- Finance and Administration Sub-Committee
- Social Services Sub-Committee
- Development Planning Sub-Committee
- Works Sub-Committee
- Justice and Security Sub-Committee
- Municipal Environmental Management Sub-Committee
- Municipal Tourism Sub-Committee
The sub-committees principally deliberate on specific issues and recommends to the Executive Committee, which in turn presents them to the Assembly for ratification and adoption.
The Executive Committee co-ordinates plans and programmes of sub-committees and oversees the smooth operation of the administration. It also has the power to recommend the appointment or replacement of officials in the Municipality. The Municipal Assembly as authority is responsible for the overall development of the Municipality. There is a Municipal Planning Co-ordianting Unit, which provides Advisory services to the Executive Committee in its planning functions.
Zonal Councils and Unit Committees are pivotal in local level development as they ferry the Assembly and local community and act as the supreme points of development at the local levels. There are three (3) Zonal Councils.
The Municipal Chief Executive heads the office of the Municipal Assembly. There are 12 Decentralized Department under the office of the Assembly. The activities of these Departments are coordinated by Municipal Co-ordinating
Date Created : 11/20/2017 8:29:21 AM