The Working People’s Alliance (WPA) is saying that even though Guyana has finally seen the return
of Local Government Elections (LGE), the country still has a long way to go before realizing a full return of democracy at this level of governance.
This position was articulated by WPA executive member, Dr. David Hinds at the party’s most recent press conference.
“We feel that the Local Government Commission is long overdue, and that it should be put in place as soon as possible. We take local government very seriously. Guyana had Local Government Elections but we think we should go further than just Local Government Elections.”
Dr. Hinds continued, “There should be much more reform in the Local Government system. One of the things we have advocated in the past is a return of the village councils, because we feel at that basic level in the community, we should be involved in making decisions.”
Dr. Hinds said that the WPA is totally for the deepening of local governance. He said that Guyana has progressed in some areas, but in the WPA’s opinion the nation needs to move further than it currently has. “Certainly we would like to see the Local Government Commission be put in place, and for the people in the communities to become much more involved in making decisions.”
Once established, the Local Government Commission, provided for under article 78A of the Constitution, would, as it deems fit, deal with all matters related to the regulation and staffing of local government organs, and with dispute resolution within and between local government organs.
When operational, the Commission is expected to reduce the influence of Central Government by placing the oversight of local democratic organs under the purview of a commission, and not a government ministry.
The Commission would comprise eight members, four nominated by Government, one nominated by the unions operating in the local government sector, and three nominated by the Opposition.
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