Decentralization crippling local govt programs, says Lop Mpuuga

Leader of Opposition in Parliament (LoP) Mathias Mpuuga (C) interacts with leaders with fellow MPs and local authorities at Kikamulo Heath Centre III in Nakaseke District on June 5, 2023. PHOTO/DAN WANDERA

What you need to know:

  • Mpuuga says that the continued decentralization of the local government powers and programs has slowed service delivery at the lower local governments.

TheLeader of Opposition in Parliament (LoP) Mathias Mpuuga has rallied for autonomy of the local government programs to boost service delivery.

Mpuuga says that the continued decentralization of the local government powers and programs, including the local revenues, has slowed service delivery at the lower local governments.

“What is happening at the lower local governments is a deliberate crippling of the service delivery systems since the funds supposed to cater for services are held by the central government and released late. As Parliament we played our part. We demanded that the lower local governments take charge of their respective locally generated resources,” he told Nakaseke District officials on Monday.

According to the LoP, it is illogical when the funds locally generated are sent to the central government and never released on time.

“I acknowledge the fact that your roads are in bad shape and the state of the dilapidated schools and less classroom blocks for our children. We need to have these challenges addressed. This is why the office of the Leader of the Opposition is touring your areas for purposes of monitoring and to help have the different challenges addressed by the relevant government departments,” Mpuuga noted.

Benjamin Makanga, the Nakaseke District Secretary for Works who represented the District LC5 Chairperson revealed that the withholding of the locally generated funds and the recentralization of several of the local programs and services is a great pain to the locals.

“The decentralization program needs a complete overhaul because the original purpose of ensuring service delivery is decentralized has lost the original meaning. We are very powerless as political and technical leadership in the major decision-making processes,” he remarked.

Nakaseke South MP said many residents believe that the government has abandoned its major role yet the residents pay taxes.

“We have some parishes that do not have a single primary school and sub counties that lack a government secondary school. The health facilities lack accommodation for the medical staff. The medical personnel walk long distances to their respective stations. The roads are in a poor state,” he observed.

On Monday, Mpuuga was joined by a section the opposition lawmakers including the Luweero District Woman MP Brenda Nabukenya, Mityana Woman MP Joyce Bagala, Wakiso District Woman MP Betty Naluyima and Nakaseke Central MP Allan Mayanja- among other MPs on the tour of the different government programs in the greater Luweero Districts.