A Consultant with the Centre for Applied Legal Research, Dr. James Tsabora says public participation and engagement in governance matters should not be taken for granted, if effective service delivery to citizens is to be achieved.

He was speaking during the Parliamentary Committee on Local Govt, dialogue with CSOs on the Provincial Councils and Administration Amendment Bill and Urban Council Shadow Bill currently underway in the capital.

Dr Tsabora emphasised that members of the Provincial or metropolitan Councils are accountable collectively and individually to the people whom they lead in the respective provinces.

He added that the Provincial and metropolitan council should now be composed of a Chairperson of a council elected in terms of section 272. ii) the Mayors and Chairpersons should be drawn from all urban and rural local authorities in the province iii) including ten women elected by a system put in place.

Apparently, a participant, Charlse Mazorodze, said citizen participating should be guaranteed and service delivery should be prioritised.

Meanwhile, one consultant, contributed, saying the elected Chairperson of a Provincial Metropolitan Councils represents the face of the electorate and should be accorded greater functions and responsibilities by giving prominence within the context of crafting a single government for this tier.

The consultant added that the design of the country’s devolution needs to be revised, saying the problem comes when a Minister of State is given the same mandated as that given to the Provincial Councils.