The Chamber for Local Governance (ChaLoG) has become aware of the 24-hour Economy Policy as announced by the flagbearer of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), HE John Dramani Mahama and has thoroughly analysed its potential impact on the revenue generation drive and the corresponding improvement in the public service delivery by most Metropolitan/Municipal/District Assemblies (MMDAs).
ChaLoG wishes to endorse the 24-hour Economy Policy in its entirety as well as agree totally with the Trades Union Congress (TUC’s) description of the Policy as a GAME CHANGER.
This is because, it has the greatest potential to completely revolutionize the local governance landscape of this country as well give true meaning to the concept of decentralisation and citizens participation.
ChaLoG firmly believes that, the Policy if fully implemented would portend the following benefits to the local citizens and local government administration in Ghana:
- Improve Local Economic Development: this will greatly improve on the local economies of cities, towns and villages, thereby creating more income generation activities.
- Increment in total revenues collected by central government: this will invariably lead to an automatic increment in the 5% share of total revenues collected and deposited into the District Assemblies Common Fund (DACF) for MMDAs to undertake more developmental projects.
- Increased revenue generation through the collection of Night Tolls: this particular revenue handle has become very difficult, if not impossible to collect, due to the fact that Assembly Task Forces do not work beyond 5pm across the country.
- Facilitate the easy collection of Property Rate Taxes: most MMDAs have struggled and continues to struggle to efficiently collect this tax, because once again, the Assemblies do not work beyond 5pm on weekdays and on weekends. As a result, the revenue collectors do not get to meet most rate payers at home, as most of the rate payers to are at work.
- MMDAs will be able to exercise proper development control: many property owners who intend to build or persons bent on erecting illegal structures without obtaining permit have been operating mainly in the night and on weekends when the MMDAs are not working. This Policy no doubt, will lead to an increment in the payment of permit fees to MMDAs, because they will now be in the position to stop illegal building or erection of unauthorized structures in the night just as they effectively do during their official working hours.
- Promote greater security for local citizens: it will lead to the provision of proper lightening of local communities leading to improvement in their security and engender new night commercial activities through the provision of street lights.
- Improve sanitation and waste management: this has the tendency to greatly improve the sanitation situation in most markets and public areas which are directly managed by the MMDAs. This is because, waste generated after 5pm after they have close for the day. These wastes are left unattended to overnight until the next day before they are cleared. The situation even becomes compounded if these wastes are generated after 5pm on Friday and have to be left unattended to over the weekend until the next Monday before they are cleared. The Policy will undoubtedly nip this unsightly phenomenon in the bud.
- Create more informal jobs: the Policy will serve as a major source of job creation especially within the informal sector in the local communities as well as acting as a catalyst to bring out the entrepreneurial acumen among local citizens.
ChaLoG is convinced beyond reasonable doubt, that the Policy is sound, pragmatic and properly thought through.
It is against this backdrop, that ChaloG wishes to call on all well-meaning Ghanaians, to fully endorse and embrace the 24-hour Economy Policy, to help expand the frontiers of local governance and further deepen decentralisation in Ghana.
Long Live Ghana
Long Live Local Governance
Long Live ChaLoG
Dr. Richard Fiadomor President 0243138633
Hon. Romeo Elikplim Akahoho Executive Secretary 0244967680
Hon Alhaji Ibrahim F. Faila Public Relations Officer 0244237456