President Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom on Wednesday ratified the amendment to the Decentralisation Act awarding full control of the board of Local Government Authority (LGA) to the president.
The previous LGA board consisted of nine members including six elected councillors. The new amendment removes all elected councillors from LGA’s board which has been reduced to five members with a minister, a female appointee from the Gender Equality sector, a member of a non-governmental organisation, a member with a background in governance or public administration, and a Chief Executive Officer. All members will be appointed by the president with the consent of Parliament.
The president is to determine the allowances to be provided to the five members who will serve a term of five years. The previous Decentralisation Act mandates a secret vote among LGA board members to elect its president and vice president. However, with the new amendment, the president will appoint LGA board’s president while the vice president will be elected from among the other members sans the CEO.
This amendment to the Decentralisation Act was passed by the parliament with a majority of 44 votes out of 61 members present. Lawmakers of the opposition coalition had opposed the bill.