Local Government Minister launches service tracker scorecard

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Minister Tamba Lamina

By Frederick V. Kanneh, Information Officer MLGCA

Tamba Lamina, the Minister of Local Government and Community Affairs has launched the Local Governance and Services Tracker (LGST) and signed an MoU with the Initiative for Government Reform (IGR) on behalf of the 6 Local Councils that the scorecard is targeting.

The Local Governance and Services Tracker (LGST) is an online citizen scorecard that enables stakeholders in government and civil society to collaborate and see the contributions they make, as well as the outputs they co-create, in local service delivery. LGST is established by BASE (Building Accountability Systems through Empowered Communities), a USAID-funded project primed by the Institute for Governance Reform (IGR) and implemented by Sierra Leonean organizations including CARL, BAN, IRN, and the 50/50 Group.

In his keynote address after the presentation of the scorecard, Amb Tamba Lamina described the scorecard as one that keeps track of activities and performance of both the local and central governance, adding that the local governance including Regions, Districts, and Chiefdoms with specific reference to services that the government delivers to those areas.

“As a Ministry, we are opening our doors for us to be assessed in different areas in order for us to know exactly how we are performing but additionally, areas where we need to improve, which is the function of this scorecard,” he explained while underscoring that the animated reaction of various Local Council representatives after the presentation of the scorecard was enough to testify that it has already started its function.

He noted that the scorecard serves as constructive engagement with citizens in 6 Local Councils including the Western Rural District Council, Moyamba, Karene, Falaba, Tonkolili, and Koidu New Sembehun District Councils. He added that it is very important in a democracy for citizens to engage and participate in evaluating the performance of government at both local and central levels.

He confessed that this is the first time the gauge has been set for the Local Councils which allows the citizens to hold them accountable, adding that the other interesting aspect in the scorecard is that it is not going to be the usual Civil Society Organizations’ role of holding leaders to account by criticizing but helping to establish tangible data on critical issues that impact on the lives of citizens.

He expressed delight as a Minister of Local Government for launching the scorecard and signing an MoU on behalf of the 6 named Local Councils, he admonished that the scorecard is not an indictment but a tool that pushes the Councils to improve on their service delivery.

He ended by assuring that the aim of the Ministry is to upscale the scorecard to all Local Councils across the country as time goes on, and he pledged the Ministry’s commitment to sustaining the scorecard.

The presentation of the scorecard was done by the Executive Director of the Initiative for Government Reform, Andrew Lavallie, in the presence of the Deputy Minister of Local Government, Acting Permanent Secretary, Media, Ministries Departments and Agencies (MDAs), and Civil Society Organizations, amongst others.

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