President wants better service in the districts


President Michel and the DAs during the meeting yesterday

Also at the meeting, where the DAs shared their views and experiences in the management of district affairs, was the Minister for Community Development, Youth and Sport, Vincent Meriton and high ranking officials of the ministry.

President Michel said that the district administration offices need to strengthen partnership between stakeholders within government as well as the private sector to ensure better service delivery to the residents of the communities.

He also said they need to take greater responsibility to meet the public demands for efficient and reliable services.

"We are empowering the districts to take decisions more efficiently and to deliver a better service for the community. District administrators are aware of the needs of their community and need to identify the most innovative and least time-consuming ways to implement their projects, process individual cases as well as coordinate with other national agencies, such as Department of Environment, the Police and National Drug Enforcement Agency, when issues of concern arise," said Mr Michel.

The district administrators spoke to the President about their concerns and gave their suggestions on how district services could be improved. They expressed their concerns on the main challenge for their communities, the social ills, in particular drug abuse.

"The districts need to coordinate their efforts with the Social Renaissance Committee to identify problem areas, and seek immediate solutions for them. Social ills can seem like wide and overwhelming problems, but if we tackle them area by area, we will eventually win this battle against drugs and the related ills," he said.

Mr Meriton said the President wanted to meet the DAs and show appreciation for the hard work they do and also listen to their concerns, suggestions and recommendations.

“He also wanted to stress the need to focus efforts on capacity building including that of local leaders and to prepare for the development of the eventual election of the district councils that will promote the empowerment of the community that the President has always spoken about,” he said.

The meeting was planned a long time back but many other events have been coming up delaying the meeting, which took place in line with President Michel’s policy and ongoing exercise to reach out to the communities.

Mr Meriton said each district has its own issues but the need for all representatives of government ministries, the private sector and non-governmental organisations to work together with the DAs was common to all districts.

He said there are plans to offer training for the DAs, leading to diploma level qualifications, enabling them to boost their management skills.

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