He said as representatives of their electoral areas, assembly members ought to work diligently devoid of political colourisation to improve on the general living conditions of the people.
The Regional Minister made the call in an interview with the Ghana News Agency on the sidelines of an orientation workshop for newly elected and appointed members of eight out of 16 Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies (MMDAs) in the Eastern enclave of the region on Friday in Tema.
The assembly members drawn from Kpong-Katamanso, Shai Osudoku, Ningo Prampram, Ledzekuku Krowor, Ashaiman, Ada East and West and Tema were trained on participatory and accountability in assembly management, conflict management, district assembly project and contract management, resource mobilization and contemporary issues in local governance among others.
Mr Afotey-Agbo indicated that Assembly Members are at the heart of the decentralization system of the country and said “they are critical in the drive to deepen the democratic credentials of the country in promoting effective and efficient local government administration and participatory democracy at the local level”.
Assembly processes, he said, had changed considerably in recent times, which called for assembly members to be given the requisite training in the performance of their duties at the assemblies.
“Their mandate places a huge responsibility on you and would therefore require that you are well equipped with the requisite knowledge and capacity to be well positioned to offer useful and pragmatic policy choices, advice to ensure efficiency in the assemblies,” he explained.
Mrs Sethina Annag Danquah, Senior Assistant Registrar of the Institute of Local Government Studies, facilitators of the training, noted that, with the training given the assembly members, their attitudes, working relationships and ethics would be improved to bring the desired change in the country’s socio-political agenda.
She said the training in financial management, accountability and resource mobilization would help the assembly members to mobilize the needed revenue internally for infrastructural development.
Participants expressed optimism that the training would enhance their work as representatives of their electoral areas, ensuring that, their people are made actively part of the decision-making processes and governance.