Councils directed to improve delivery Local Government and Public Works Minister Winston Chitando said the country’s oldest town had made commendable strides in the sphere of service delivery.

Wallace Ruzvidzo

Herald Reporter

All local authorities have been directed to come up with implementation matrices detailing the actions they will undertake to ensure quality and unfettered service delivery for the benefit of ratepayers.

The directive was given yesterday by Local Government and Public Works Minister, Winston Chitando, at the launch of the operationalisation of the local government blueprint and unpacking the gender responsive toolkit to council chairpersons and mayors.

Minister Chitando directed local authorities to prioritise service delivery as the country journeys towards the attainment of Vision 2030 of an upper middle income society.

“In this vein, all local authorities will now localise and operationalise the dictates of the blueprint and ensure prompt response to the ‘call to action without compromising service delivery’,” said Minister Chitando.

“Each local authority must now come up with an implementation matrix spelling out a clear roadmap that shows actions to be taken to deliver quality and unfettered services to the people. This an instruction that all local authorities should implement and provide traceable evidence of progress in a dash board format.”

Apart from crafting roadmaps, local authorities were also challenged to set targets and deliver on them, to inspire investor confidence, which would in turn see accelerated development in their communities.

Minister Chitando said service provision and delivery have gone down the drain in most local authorities, especially in urban areas led by the opposition.

“As such, I am directing that every local authority must come up with service delivery targets that aim at creating safe habitats which promote investor confidence and in turn develop the councils and communities across the country,” he said.

“The attainment of Vision 2030 is indeed an achievable dream if local authorities work towards operationalisation of this blueprint. People must see, live and observe an upper-middle income society not only from the income per capita point of view, but also from the services they receive from Government and local authorities similarly.

“We need to provide world class services that will boost confidence of ratepayers in our local authorities.” 

Councils were also challenged to champion gender equality through gender responsive budgeting.

The inclusion of women and youths, said Minister Chitando, must remain a critical pillar in implementing the ‘call to action without compromising service delivery’ blueprint. 

“It is common knowledge that gender-responsive budget works for everyone (women and men, girls and boys) by ensuring gender-equitable distribution of resources and by contributing to equal opportunities for all.

“As we also launch this gender responsive budgeting toolkit, it is essential to observe that the same is vital both for gender and fiscal justice. The toolkit aims to assist managing local authorities to apply gender budgeting tools in their processes.

“Government and all local authorities have a duty to promote gender equality by implementing the legal and political commitments in the national Constitution,” he said. 

Government has made strides in promoting women participation in decision making in local governance through the 30 percent women’s quota councillors.

The iwomen’s quota has seen an increase in the number of councillors by 587 women across all councils.

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