Dep Local Govt Minister Speaks on De-amalgamation
The Deputy Minister of Local Government and Rural Development, Hadiru Kalokoh last Thursday at the weekly press briefing spoke on the de-amalgamation of chiefdoms and other administrative reorganizations in Sierra Leone.
He described chiefdom as the basic unit of administration and an integral part of the governance of the country adding that chiefdom administration started with the advent of colonial rule.
He discussed that the British Colonial Government divided Sierra Leone in to the Colony which is now the western area and the protectorate which is now the provinces.
The Deputy Minister stated that the colonial government ensured that each chiefdom has its own paramount chief elected by the chiefdom authorities and described a paramount chief as a chief that is not subordinate to any other chief within the jurisdiction of the chiefdom.
He said the reasons and factors that may justified the amalgamation of these chiefdoms at that time no longer apply to modern day Sierra Leone and mentioned that ethnic and cultural differences in some amalgamated chiefdoms are causing conflicts which is not helpful to the people and for social harmony needed for development.
According to Mr. Hadiru, even though the Chieftaincy Act of 2009 made provisions for Rotational Crowning of Paramount Chiefs in amalgamated chiefdoms, tensions and animosity still manifested themselves at paramount chief elections adding that eighty chiefdoms were amalgamated in the north, thirty chiefdoms in the south and nine chiefdoms in the east.
He noted that De-amalgamation will put some financial burden on government, given that forty one new chiefdoms will be added to the existing one hundred and forty nine chiefdoms.
Before the dissolution of Karene District in 1949, he said, it had its own District Office and District Council like the other districts in the country and disclosed that with the re-establishment of Karene District and the establishment of Falaba District, Government has declared these two districts as localities.
“There is now a Karene District Council with its principal offices located in Kamakwie Town and a Falaba District Council with its offices in Mongo Town”, said Mr. Kaloko and concluded that Port Loko Town which is the headquarters of the north-western province has been declared by Government as a locality in line with the other provincial headquarters in the country.
Samuel Thomas Bangura
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