…As He Tenders Resignation Letter
Local Government and Rural Development Minister Dan Kwaku Botwe is at the verge of resigning from his post.
The decision follows what insiders say is the frosty relationship between the Minister and Irene Naa Torshie Addo-Lartey, Administrator of the Districts Assemblies Common Fund (DACF).
The paper is informed that Mr. Botwe’s resignation letter which has already been submitted to President Nana Akufo-Addo is yet to be accepted by the presidency.
The letter sources say triggered a marathon emergency meeting on Monday between the two feuding parties and the President in a desperate attempt to bring closure to the matter.
Mr. Botwe who is also the Member of Parliament for Okere in the Eastern Region wrote to the president over what he described as Naa Torshie’s refusal to cooperate with his Ministry in the equitable disbursement of District Common Funds in the manner in the best interest of government.
In the said letter, Local Government Minister wrote: “It is instructive for His Excellency to note that, this Ministry has not had the expected level of cooperation from the Office of the Administrator of the District Assemblies Common Fund.”
“In the past two (2) years and three (3) months since I have been in the Ministry, efforts to get the Office of the Administrator of District Assemblies Common Fund to align with the Ministry in the strategic determination of the beneficiary Districts of such allocations has not been successful”, an unhappy Minister Botwe, noted in his letter to the President, dated Monday July 10, 2023.
He continued: “even more worrying is the fact that, as the Ministry responsible for the MMDAs we are not involved, engaged or consulted in any form by the Administrator of the District Assemblies Common Fund in the development of the formula proposed to Parliament. We are of the view that, Government would be more efficient in the utilization of such resources if we align the decision making process with all relevant stakeholders.”
Dan Botwe argued that his Ministry, by law, has the mandate to provide coordinating and supervisory role over the activities of the MMDAs and to guide their development activities, therefore the mandate to determine which Districts receive such support and special attention, lies with the Ministry.
“We are of the firm belief that the trigger for distribution should be initiated by the Ministry, on behalf of Government, to ensure it sits well within the broad government strategy”, he added.
Mr. Botwe among other things added: “Annually, the Administrator of the District Assemblies Common Fund proposes the formula for distribution of the District Assemblies Common Fund to the Parliament of Ghana. Once the approval is done, the Administrator of the District Assemblies Common Fund has the function under section 129 of the Local Governance Act, 2016 (Act 936) to “administer and distribute moneys paid into the Common Fund among the District Assemblies in accordance with the formula approved by Parliament.”
The Okere Legislature noted that Section 126 (3) of the same Act states; The Minister shall in consultation with the Minister responsible for Finance, determine the category of expenditure of the approved development budget of District Assemblies that must in each year be met out of amounts received by the District Assemblies from the District Assemblies Common Fund.
He explained that as the supervisory Ministry of the Local Governance Act, 2016 (Act 936) and the Ministry responsible for coordinating the MMDAs, we are of the view that , the mandate to determine which Districts receive such support and special attention, lies with the Ministry. We are of the firm belief that the trigger for distribution should be initiated by the Ministry, on behalf of Government, to ensure it sits well within the broad government strategy.