The Minister of Local Government and Rural Development (LGRD), Hajia Alima Mahama, yesterday launched a revised Model Standing Orders (MSOs) for Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies (MMDAs) in Accra.
The model, she explained would among other things, deepen decentralization and ensure that policies, laws, regulations, and guidelines for local governance administration are enhanced.
“The absence of a revised Model Standing Orders has been a gap in local government administration since parliament passed Act 936 in 2016,”Hajia Mahama said.
She indicated that continuous application of old MSOs by MMDAs has created a number of challenges in their job functions, thus the need for the revised model.
Hajia Mahama observed that the revised order would facilitate the work of secretaries of the assemblies and presiding members to effectively apply and interpret orders for effective administration.
The new features of the standing orders, she said realigned with Act 936 with provisions to cater for circumstances that lead to the inability of an assembly to elect presiding member at inaugural meetings.
Hajia Mahama stated that orders 10(4) and (7), 14 (1) introduced new provisions to forestall difficulties encountered in electing presiding members on unending basis, adding that “it has made executive committee more accountable to the general assembly.”
Casual vacancy of a presiding member, she noted, created problems thus have been redefined to allow members to overrule the decision on adjournment of meetings.
The sector minister expressed expectations that the orders could improve deliberations and rapid proceedings of assemblies, and urged them to quickly pass a resolution to adopt the revised standing order.
Professor Samuel Nunoo Woode, a former Chairman of Public Services Commission (PSC), encouraged assembly members to observe high standards of behaviour by conforming to the revised rules and regulations.
He said the government was committed to deepen local governance, and called on the MMDAs to work hand in hand with the former to ensure efficient administration, stressing that the revised standing orders would improve integrity of the assembly.
BY JOYCELINE NATALLY CUDJOE