The proposal to scrap the legal personality for all the three districts of the City of Kigali will not undermine district authorities but will instead ensure a capital that is delivering top notch people centered services.
This is according to the Minister of Local Government Prof. Anastase Shyaka.
He was appearing before the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Political Affairs and Gender Equality on Tuesday, during which he briefed the MPs on the draft law seeking to scrap legal personality for all the three districts of the Kigali making the latter the only office that decides what is done within the precincts of the capital.
“The executive and advisory committees of the city will remain and more expertise will be developed on that level while we build even more people-centered decentralised service delivery systems on the grassroots level,” he said.
He pointed out that the move to change the law governing the City of Kigali is aimed at creating a capital city that is being led and developed by expert minds while at the same time delivering services directly to the people on the grassroots level.
For instance, he pointed out that there was a proposal to create a team, possibly local, foreign or even both whose expertise can be relied on to drive the capital towards a much more modern city.
“We are saying that even the CoK advisory committee needs advisors representing the masses and expert advisors. What we are aiming for is a city advisory committee bringing together people whose diverse expertise can benefit the city for 20 or 30 years to come,” he said.
Change in name and appointment
If passed, the new law will see the titles of the top members of the district executive organ who are currently Mayor and vice mayors dropped and replaced with District Chief Administrator and Deputy District Chief Administrator.
Members of the Executive Organ are appointed through a presidential order for a term of five (5) years renewable.
It is proposed that the district’s administrators for the three districts will be assisted by a security committee and a corporate services division focused on delivering the city’s services to citizens.
“The executive and advisory committees of the City will remain and more expertise will be developed there while below, we will be building even more people centered decentralized service delivery systems,” he said.
That’s why we are saying that even the advisory committee needs advisors representing the masses and expert advisors, he added.
During the meeting, City Mayor Marie-Chantal Rwakazina emphasized that changes are minimal pointing out that the taxes will still be collected by districts but will be handled by the city authorities.
“The districts have been giving us 30 per cent of the collected revenues but now, the difference is that the taxes will still be collected by districts but will be referred to City of Kigali taxes. Districts budgets will also be based on one comprehensive action plan unlike the past where each district had its own action plan,” she said.
The services provided by the district will not change. However, if the law is approved, the changes will be minimal. For instance, as of now, if someone for instance works for Gasabo district, he or she is an employee of the district but if the law is approved, he or she will be an employee of the City of Kigali.