The government has called for collective working relationships between town council authorities and departments under central government to actualise decentralisation.
Cabinet Office Special Duties Permanent Secretary Wisdom Bwalya says there is a need for local councils and government departments to work in harmony if the decentralisation process development agenda is to be achieved by 2024.
ZANIS reports that Mr Bwalya said this during a meeting with government heads of departments in Mambwe district at the weekend.
He further directed district administrations, together with local authorities, to ensure that planning of all public infrastructure construction projects takes care of water, sanitation and electricity installations.
Mr. Bwalya said government wants rural areas to start using flushable toilets and move away from pit latrines
“That way, we will not only develop the remote areas but we will also cut on the number of government workers wanting to move from rural areas to urban areas as the services that they want to access in urban areas will be readily available in rural areas,” he said.
The Permanent Secretary urged government officials at the district level to provide civil leadership and put power politics aside if they are to deliver the needed services to all Zambians.
He also advised local councils against overriding Ward Development Committees in their planning processes, as these committees are a cardinal component in fostering sustainable development that responds to the needs of the people.
“Do not override the Ward Development Committees. Let people at the grass root level also have a say and have a feel of the sense of ownership. Engage them and hear their views too,” he said.
Meanwhile, Mambwe Town Council Secretary John Mwanza appealed to the Permanent Secretary to liaise with his counterpart at the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development to facilitate speedy approval of Constituency Development Fund projects that have been submitted.
Mr Mwanza said some of the CDF projects need to commence before the rainy season hence the need to approve them without delay.
“We pushed in our projects and empowerments on 25th July 2022 to have them approved. Right now we are still waiting for the response,” he said.