Local Govt Ministry takes turn at ‘Meet the Press’ series
The Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development (MLGRD) has decided to value and re-value property in all the 254 municipal, metropolitan and district assemblies (MMDAs) across the country.
In collaboration with the Land Valuation Division of the Lands Commission, the ministry will begin the exercise with a pilot involving 60 MMDAs.
The objective of the exercise, among others, is to improve upon the percentage of internally generated funds (IGF) of the assemblies’ revenue.
The sector Minister, Hajia Alima Mahama, made this known to journalists in Accra Tuesday at the Meet the Press event.
With the minister were her deputies, the directors and the heads of agencies under the ministry who later took turns to answer questions from journalists.
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She also said all the assemblies were being assessed on the implementation of their Revenue Improvement Plans (RIAP) that had contributed to the growth of the IGF as a portion of the total revenue of assemblies, increasing from 21 per cent in 2016 to 23.3 per cent in 2017.
On the general performance and achievements of the ministry, Hajia Alima announced that the processes for obtaining building permits had been improved, while the length of time had also been reduced.
“The processes involved in acquiring a building permit have now been reduced from 15 to 11,” she said, adding that the duration had been reduced from three months to 30 days at the Accra Metropolitan Assembly and 40 days at the Tema Metropolitan Assembly.
She said those reforms had been achieved in collaboration with the British Department for International Development (DFID), under the Business Enabling Environment Project (BEEP) of the ministry.
Additionally, the minister said, the District Assemblies Common Fund (DACF) had transferred GH¢663,183,029.70 for all the quarters of 2017 to the MMDAs.
Hajia Mahama announced that in collaboration with the Irrigation Development Authority, the ministry had identified 1,221 potential dam sites suitable for the One-village, One-dam programme.
Out of the number, she said, technical appraisals were done on five in each of the 64 districts, following which 196 dams had been confirmed as suitable for development.
She said the ministry had also initiated a Planting for Exports and Rural Development (PERD) programme under which cashew seedling nurseries had been established in seven districts across the country, with the support of the Ministry of Food and Agriculture.
She added that the nurseries were expected to yield more than 2.2 million grafted seedlings for the 2018 planting season.
Hajia Mahama told the gathering that the ministry had also drafted a Registration of Births and Deaths Bill which had already been reviewed by the Attorney-General’s Department.
She said the new bill had reduced the challenges associated with the registration of births and deaths.