Absenteeism of parish chiefs threatens implementation of PDM in Sembabule

Museveni launches the Parish Model to eliminate poverty from households starting with parishes as the smallest units. File Photo

Sembabule, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Absenteeism of parish chiefs in Kawanda sub county, Sembabule district is threatening the implementation of the Parish Development Model-PDM program in the area.

Asuman Mwanje, the Kawanda LCIII chairperson says the intended beneficiaries of PDM in the area are still ignorant about the program, largely due to the absenteeism of parish chiefs who are charged with mobilizing and sensitization of residents.

Kawanda is among the seven newly created sub-counties in Sembabule district, which were established by an Act of Parliament in 2017.

According to Mwanje, many sub county and parish chiefs deployed in the area are rarely on their duty stations, hence failing to perform their responsibilities which deprives service delivery to the public.

Mwanje has petitioned the Sembabule District Chief Administrative Officer Malik Mahabba, asking him to take action on the technical staff over their failure to perform their duties.

“These workers report on rare occasions that is if there are some meetings, that is when they tend to appear and after the meetings, they move back to their homes outside Kawanda sub-county,” the petition reads in part.

Mwanje indicates that he has repeatedly called the civil servants to order, but to his disappointment, they have remained adamant hence affecting service delivery.

For instance, according to Mwanje, the sub-county is lagging behind in mobilization and sensitization campaigns for the Parish Development Model program, indicating that apparently, the roles have been assumed by the political leaders because the appointed parish chiefs are not regularly reporting for work.

“Now that they see that time is against them, they are panicking and resorted to doing work through phone calls instead of physically reaching out to the community. Even other daily government programs in the sub-county are not appropriately done. Parents are looking for chiefs for issuance of birth certificates for their children to be used in schools but in vain,” he indicates.

Meduis Kyalimpa, the LCIII councilor Kairasya parish partly blames the absenteeism on the appointment of parish chiefs who are not residents in the area. He explains that these give excuses for transport expenses and lack of accommodation in their workstations. He prefers that parish chiefs are redeployed in their home areas that are more convenient for them.

Malik Mahabba, the Sembabule District Chief Administrative Officer says that he is going to study the complaints and take appropriate actions.

However, Resty Nanyondo, the Kawanda sub county chief has denied allegations of absenteeism.

According to Nanyondo, the sub-county does not have enough office space for all the staff, and as a result, some of them spend much of their time in the field.

“We have enough evidence to exonerate us because the village council chairpersons and office of the sub-county internal security officers can attest that we are indeed effectively doing our duties,” she says.

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