Local leaders have been challenged to revive village committees in an effort to improve social service delivery.
The challenge was posed by villagers here recently when contributing to a topic on the role of leaders in managing service provision and the rights of citizens to demand for better services.
They stated that village communities were getting poor services due to many factors, including absence of special committees that supervise general service provision within their localities.
“Reviving these committees will be an important thing in boosting service delivery in respective areas,” said Asia Lembris from Babati district, Manyara region. She stated that earlier, the committees were available in every village.
“This is an important area to work on if we want to improve service delivery at the village level,” she added. However, she stressed on the need to empower rural communities for them to effectively make their leaders accountable.
Kulthum Kimario from Orarashi village in Engutoto ward stressed on the need to empower the committees by giving them better skills and knowledge to supervise social service delivery in their respective areas.
“Through such trainings, members of the committees need to be given directives on the best way of doing things,” Kuruthum said.
Training facilitator Lambert Chialo revealed that poor service delivery at the village level was contributed by inefficient and incompetent civil servants. He said some of them were reckless, going to office late and some of them using abusive language against those seeking rightful services.
“All these lead to poor service delivery in the society,” he stressed, adding that poor communication systems between service providers and service consumers was yet another challenge making things even worse.
“There are lots of things here, especially when we speak about service delivery to our people. For instance, in a particular area service will be poor and the reason behind could be limited resources such as staff, funds and working tools,” he said.
Chialo called involvement of civil society organisations (CSOs) in the ward development committee (WDC) meetings.
“Ward councillors should work hand in hand with CSOs due to the latter’s importance and role in socio-economic development,” the facilitator said.
He also reminded the villagers that district councils through ward councillors have the mandate to hire and fire public officials working in their respective areas.
“Local government leaders have the responsibility to educate the people on the need to know their rights,” he said.