On November 16, US funded Local Empowerment for Government Inclusion and Transparency (LEGIT) Project launched its activity in the rural parts of the country as part of government’s decentralization policy. According to LEGIT Chief of Party Dr. Ross Worthington, the project will be working in Bong,
Grand Gedeh and Nimba counties for the next three years on a pilot phase.
He said the purpose of LEGIT is to increase the accountability, transparency, and effectiveness of sub–national government resourcces in the country.
“LEGIT will provide support to the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Governance Commission as they lead, monitor and coordinate the implementation of the government’s decentralization agenda,” Dr. Worthington said.
He said LEGIT will also strengthen sub–national institutions in at least three counties and three cities to be more capable, transparent, and responsive to citizens, improve the information provided by the government on how public resources are used at sub–national levels.
The launch, which brought together a cross section of residents from civil society organizations in Nimba and local government officials including Ganta City Mayor Ben Dokpa, chiefs, elders, youth and women, among others, was characterized by speeches and power point presentations on various topics beneficial to the project.
LEGIT will be working in four complementary components including Component One that will increase the capacity of the government’s institutions to make incremental and sustained progress in the implementation of the National Policy on Decentralization and Local Governance.
Component Two will improve performance and strengthen the capacity of county administrations to coordinate and provide oversight of government activities across sectors.
In Component Three, LEGIT improves the capacity of cities to manage revenues and deliver key services; while in Component Four, citizens’ representation in planning and decision-making of service delivery in counties and cities will be increased.
Dr. Worthington assured the gathering that LEGIT will also build the capacity of civil society organizations to enhance government functions in the county, instead of looking at government as an opponent.