From Awareness Times Newspaper in Freetown

Local News
In Sierra Leone, Hon. Elizabeth Alpha Lavalie Gives Public Lecture on the reinstatement of District Officers
By Dauda Koroma
Sep 9, 2010, 17:14

The chairperson Human Rights Committee in Parliament Hon. Elizabeth Alpha Lavalie yesterday gave a lecture to Colleague Members of Parliament, members of the civil society, journalists and the general public on the intention of the APC government to re-introduce the offices of District Officers.

Hon. Elizabeth Alpha Lavalie started by thanking the participants for coming to listen to her lecture. She gave a brief profile of herself after which she said that she was a deputy speaker of parliament in 2004 when the Local Government Act was passed into law which she said paved the way for the introduction of the decentralization system of government thus laying the foundation for good governance at all levels to meet contemporary world requirement of transparency and accountability in governance.

Hon. Elizabeth Alpha Lavalie

Mrs. Lavalie said in that regard the position of district officers which for a very long time characterized centralization, coerciveness and non participatory system was remov
ed giving way to decentralization at local levels.  “The people were then given the noble tasks of participating directly in the making of councilors who were tasked with local responsibilities thereby making them more answerable to their electors not as masters over them in order to ensure good governance and accountability even at the grass root level,” she went on.

Hon. Elizabeth Alpha Lavalie said she felt compelled as a citizens and a contributor to national polices adopted on the platform of transparency and good governance to talk about the much talked about reinstatement of district officers. Quoting from Section 31 (4) of the Local Government Act, she said the duties of district officers have been pro
vided for in the responsibilities of the local council Chief Administrators.  “That is why it is will be proper for this body to take a deep consideration of the Act and draw individual lines whether in fact there is a need or the reinstatement of district officer and if such reinstatement will not be a deliberate attempt at undermining the credibility of an Act of Parliament meant to give power to the people in enhancing the decentralization process,” she implored. She said decentralization is not only a hall mark for modern democratic development but a firm foundation fro the country’s rapid economic growth and progress especially when we are yet to recover fully from its present devastation.

She ended up by saying that government should not reintroduce D.Os as it will not bring good political climate for the people of this country.

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