OVERVIEW OF THE REGIONAL DEVELOPMENT PROGRAMME
In December 2018 the Uganda Cabinet created a stand-alone Local Government Sector (LGS) in order to provide more visibility and better coordinated action to issues of decentralization, local governance, service delivery, and local economic development and transformation. The Sector was carved from the Public Sector Management (PSM) Group under Cabinet Extract (Minute 532 (CT 2018) Clause 26). While the PSM Group provided a broader framework for coordinating Public Administration, Finance, Planning, and Governance across Government, the Local Government Sector will offer a unique opportunity for coordinating the collective energies of its members with a common interest in subnational development towards a common goal of revitalizing Local Governments into dynamic agents of service delivery, and local economic development and transformation. Stakeholders with interest in decentralisation, service delivery and local economic development will coordinate their actions and advocacy better under a stand-alone Local Government Sector.
The LGS seeks to consolidate the gains made under the Decentralization Policy while recognizing the imperative of re-engineering the Policy and its application to catalyse the momentum for service delivery, Local Economic Development and transformation. To that end, the Sector will pay dedicated attention to salient issues that have persistently curtailed the performance and development of subnational governments in Uganda, while building on the achievements registered over the years and taking account of lessons learned as well as the emerging regional and continental protocols on local governance.
The Local Government Sector will significantly contribute to the implementation of the Third National Development Plan (NDP III) by providing the requisite framework for its delivery at the local level. Particular attention will be paid to the objectives, strategies and programs of the NDP III.
COMPOSITION OF THE LOCAL GOVERNMENT SECTOR
The sector will be guided by the Decentralisation policy and will comprise the following core members, as set out in the Cabinet Extract:
i) Ministry of Local Government.
ii) Local Government Finance Commission.
iii) Local Governments.
These three are the government institutions that are mandated to coordinate and deliver Decentralized Services and financing.
The Uganda Local Government Association (ULGA) and the Urban Authorities Association of Uganda (UAAU) will be co-opted members of the Local Government Sector by virtue of their key roles as representatives of and advocates for Local Governments in Uganda.
Other key entities to be co-opted in consideration of their roles, mandates, interests, expertise and experience in local government issues in Uganda will include:
i) Government Ministries, Departments and Agencies with decentralized mandates and services.
ii) Non-Governmental Organization (NGOs) operating in the local government system.
iii) Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) operating in the local government system.
iv) The Private Sector.
vi) Development Partners.