Local Government Act of Sierra Leone

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History
In 1972, the local government system in Sierra Leone was abolished by the then Executive by a “Presidential declaration” which was achievable as there was no codified law or any constitutional provision to protect local government from such powerful actions by the Executive. This abolition effectively meant that Management Committees appointed by the President between 2002 and 2004 replaced local authorities.
Binneh –Kamara in 2013 argues that the “Local Government act of 2004 was enacted to address the undemocratic principle of centralisation and state administration. Districts and chiefdom councils have been reconstituted and they have been functioning since their inauguration after the first Local Council elections conducted under the new dispensation in 2004. Whether the establishment of district and chiefdom councils and the entire decentralisation process have positively impacted the lives of the people of Sierra Leone are issues which experts in governance and development studies should look into”
The Act of 2004
In 2004 a new Local Government Act facilitated the resuscitation of elected local authorities by providing for the creation of 19 local authorities, 12 District councils; 1 metropolitan council; 1 rural district council and 5 town councils led by District Council Chair Persons and Mayors.
The main thrust of the Local Government Act (2004) is to foster effective and efficient service delivery in Sierra Leone at acceptable standards.
The Local Government Act 2004 specifies 80 functions to be devolved to local government, all of which were to be devolved by the end of 2012.
In the early days of the reintroduction of local governance, there were initial successes such as the ‘big bang’ of devolving three basic services of primary health care, basic education and agricultural extension from central government to the new local councils.
The Local Government Act (2004) has provision for the setting up of an Inter-Ministerial committee on

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