-says Vice President
September 24, 2019
By Ibrahim Tarawallie
“We don’t need politicians at local councils but development experts rooted in local and non-partisan politics. You can contribute to national development but you don’t need to carry the flag of a political party,” says Vice President Dr. Mohamed Juldeh Jalloh.
According to him, there is need for a rethink to depoliticise local councils to make room for an environment that would be free from political and institutional stress.
He was speaking during a two-day workshop organised by the Ministry of Finance in collaboration with the Local Government and Rural Development Ministry at the Bank of Sierra Leone Complex on enhancing efficient revenue mobilization in local councils.
He attributed some of the institutional and political stress under which local councils are currently operating to that of politics.
He urged representatives from the various councils to start thinking about depoliticising the institution because one doesn’t need to be a member of the Sierra Leone People’s Party (SLPP) or the All Peoples Congress (APC) to become a Mayor or Chairman.
“You depoliticise the councils, councilors and wards so that they will not act under political stress. By so doing, the councils will no longer become an outlet for political consolidation but for local development. Let the people of Tonkolili vote for the person they think is going to drive development,” Dr. Jalloh noted.
According to the vice president, most times, some of those councils are under stress and that even when they want to carry out development activities, they are forced to think along colours to satisfy supporters and their party.
Dr. Jalloh stated that by liberating councils from being political, less institutional and political stress is created for them and that they will have a space to maneuver and related with the central government independently.
“These are the thinking process we will generate and share with the people that are going to drive the constitutional review process. I know it is going to be unpopular but we are going to say it,” he promised.