He noted that it was the duty of assembly members to maintain close contact with their electoral areas, consult their people, meet the electorate before and after each assembly meeting and also maintain frequent liaison with organized productive economic groups and take part in communal labour.

NCCEAlhaji Razak Saani gave the advice during a focus group discussion on the post 2015 District Level Elections organized by the NCCE in Tamale with support from the European Union to refresh the minds of participants on the country’s decentralization concept.

Participants were taken through topics such as the functions of the district assembly and its composition, functions of unit committees and the assembly members.

Alhaji Razak Saani noted that “We can ensure accountability if there is a regular consultation and active participation of the people in the decision making process”.

He said many district assemblies had neglected their people in decision making process, a situation which was affecting development in the communities.

He indicated that assembly members were at the heart of the country’s decentralization system, adding “they are critical in the drive to deepen the democratic credentials of the country in promoting effective and efficient local government administration at the local level” hence the need to be closer to their people for true participatory democracy.

Mr John Doe, Senior Officer at the Programmes Office of the NCCE, elaborated on the programme saying it sought to rekindle community participation in the activities of local government units especially at the grass-root levels as well as help build the capacity of participants on the concept of decentralization.

Mr Doe said the project would be undertaken in 84 districts across the country to sensitize the people on the concept of decentralization and urged district assemblies to always consult their people on development initiatives within their jurisdictions.

Alhaji Mohammed Baba, Head of Programmes of NCCE in the Northern Region, challenged assembly members to uphold the trust reposed in them by being accountable and work for the public good.

Some of the participants advocated that assembly members be resourced to enable them to effectively perform their duties.

GNA

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