Decentralisation And Public Policy Implementation In Uganda: the Case Of West Nile Sub-Region
Andama, Felix Adiburu
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Decentralisation is a system of governance that gained prominence in the 1970s and 1980s with the claim that it spatially and institutionally brings government closer to the people, thus making governments (national and sub-national) more accountable and responsive to local needs. Despite the recognition of the importance of decentralisation in facilitating local development, the drivers of the decentralised system of governance over time have not been homogeneous across the world as they range from political, social, economic and ethnic to territorial factors. In some countries, decentralisation has been driven by the desire to enhance local participation in development and in conflict resolution, to entrench the ruling governments in power, and to improve service delivery, among others, or a combination of these drivers of decentralisation. Following decades of the implementation of decentralisation in different parts of the world, it has had mixed outcomes. However, it is still seen to be pivotal in the development of African countries. This study sought to examine why decentralisation in Uganda seems not to have lived up to its objective to enhance efficiency and effectiveness in public policy implementation. Using a purely qualitative research methodology and design, the researcher sought answers to the key question of why there seems to be a disjuncture between the intentions of decentralisation in Uganda and the public policy outcomes at the local level. A case study of the West Nile sub-region of Uganda was undertaken. The findings of the study indicate that the institutional framework has implication for the implementation of decentralised public policies and that the inter-governmental relationships influence the degree of responsiveness of the sub-national governments to local needs as well as determines the degree of autonomy that the sub-national governments can enjoy in the process of exercising their powers and performing their functions. Local political, administrative and fiscal capacity affects the ability of sub-national governments to implement decentralised public policies. The main conclusion is that the institutional framework, inter-governmental relationships and local capacity have a significant influence on the efficiency and effectiveness of decentralised public policy implementation.
- Humanities