Acting Chief Director of the Local Government Service (LGS), Mr James Oppong-Mensah, has stressed that public officers are placed in positions of trust, implying a duty to act in the public interest.
He, therefore, urged public officers to make the public interest of Ghana their ultimate loyalty as expressed through the democratic institutions and government.
Mr Oppong-Mensah said this in a speech read by him on behalf of the Head of Service, Dr Nana Ato Arthur, at the maiden conference of the Association of Local Government Service Administrative Officers (GALGA) held in Kumasi in the Ashanti Region.
The conference was on the theme: “The Critical Role of the Administrator in Shaping Ghana’s Local Governance System for Accelerated National Development.”
He said the formation of professional associations was a step in the right direction if it was meant to serve its members in a professional manner but not to serve as platforms for organisational vigilantism.
Mr Oppong-Mensah said the LGS was aware that some professional staff in the service were habitual late comers, as some come to work at 10:00 a.m., and leave at 3:30 pm.
“Some go on weekend on Friday and come on Monday afternoon, this is not only unprofessional but also incur displeasure of your bosses which negatively affect your career.”
He said, research has shown that professional associations can contribute to high performance in organisations, and urged them to select leaders who will be professional and focused to sustain the association.
Mr Oppong-Menah said prior to 1988 there were 65 metropolitan, municipal and district assemblies (MMDAs) and in 1988 45 more assemblies were created bringing the number to 110.
“As at 2018, we are having 254 MMDAs and by the close of this year six more assemblies will be added to make them 260 MMDAs.
It is also expected that six new Regional Coordinating Councils would be created depending on the outcome of the impending referendum scheduled for December 27, 2018.”
The chief director said the LGS was one of the composite public services in Ghana which integrates professionals from different ministries, departments and agencies into its fold at regional coordinating councils and MDAs level.
He said the integrated nature of the service comes with its own complications and challenges and this needed to be resolved to consider fairness and equal opportunities.
Mr Oppong-Mensah said the LGS Council in their last meeting approved a proposal to review the existing protocols of the service (schemes of service, code of conduct condition of service etc.,) and that the process will start early next year with a stakeholder consultations and charged members of GALGA to take the exercise serious and make relevant inputs during the exercise.
“The LGS is also committed to developing the skills of all its professionals by ensuring that members participate in career training programmes and short courses to improve their capacity.”
“The LGS has come up with a capacity building framework which when operationalised next year will address most of the capacity development challenges in terms of scope and funding.”
Story: Business DESK