Papua New Guinea Country Report for Local Governance & Public Policies 2014 Pacific Local Government Forum, Port Moresby 19 – 23rd May 2014 LAND OF THE UNEXPECTED INTRODUCTION Overview • • • • • Country Profile Background on Local-level Governments Constraints & Challenges Government Initiatives Conclusion PNG Country Profile • PNG is the largest island in the Pacific with a population of more than 6 million • Has 22 Provinces excluding NCD & ABG • Has 89 Districts, 319 Local-level Governments with 6, 186 Wards. . Has approximately 465,000 square kilometers land mass • Has 800 plus languages & cultures • Shares borders with Indonesia, Australia & Solomon Islands • Gained Independence on 16 September 1975 (without shedding of blood) GOVERNMENT SYSTEM • PNG adopted Westminster model of government • Unicameral single legislative body (one house) • Has 3 tiers of government, National, Provincial and Local-level Governments Background on the Organic Law on Provincial Governments & Local-level Governments The Organic Law was passed by Parliament in July 1995 • The Organic Law Reforms was aimed at: • • • Improving the delivery of services to rural areas Increasing participation in government at community level Increasing funding to local governments Relocating public servants from urban to districts Decreasing the number of elected politicians Reduce mismanagement or misuse of funds Reforms brought important changes to the powers, structures, roles and responsibilities of governments at all levels LLGs differ from each other in terms of sizes of wards They have greater responsibilities including preparing 5 Year Development Plans, Develop Annual Budgets and ensure services are delivered. The Organic Law Reform Structure • • • • Established 18 Provincial Administrations Created 89 District Administrations Established 319 LLGs Established 18 JPP&BPC and 83 JDP & BPC (625) (now replaced with DDD) • Increased Ward Councilors numbers to 6, 186 • Established 6,186 WDCs with some (32, 000) members • Increased the number of Appointed Members in Provincial & LLG Assemblies (700) • TOTAL LEADERSHIP POSITIONS = 37, 000 Local-level Governments • LLGs are governed by the Organic Law on Provincial Governments & Local-level governments and Local-level Government Administration Act • Organic Empowers LLGs to make Laws- Section 44 • Organic Law Empowers LLGs to Collect Taxes - Section 89 • LLGs rely heavily on annual funds from National Government through Budget Process inform of Administrative support, Development, Town & Urban Service Grants, & Economic Grants • LLG head taxes not collected: people unwilling. Other Taxes only appropriate in the Urban LLGs • No other form of revenue base/Borrowings by LLGs • LLG Budgets passed in LLG Assemblies and funds released by the Minister of Finance and funds are then release by the Minister of Finance to District Treasuries • LLG Audits Cells are established and operating in Provinces Model LLG & Ward Structures LLG WC WDC Responsibilities • • • • • Receive and approve Ward development plans Determine LLG development objectives and priorities Recommend annual budget Formulate the overall LLG Development program and its 5 year rolling expenditure plan Monitor implementation of projects in all Wards • • • • • Provide leadership Initiate the preparations of the Ward Activity plan Present Ward Activity plan to LLG for endorsement Coordinate implementation of Ward Projects Take ownership of Ward projects • Seek the views of the community in the formulation of a Ward Activity plan Oversee project work Mobilize Community for improving services Maintain peace and harmony • • • Model LLG & Ward Structures Cont.. Responsibilities WDCM COMMUNITY • Community meetings • Arrangement discussion groups within the community to identify needs • Prepare project proposals including documentation • Support the work of other services providers • • • • Give ideas Support the work of all service providers Provide free Labor Do community work Constraints & Challenges Since the Organic Law reforms, constraints were experienced by Local level Governments; - Government Budget under stress, difficult to maintain adequate services, - Too many councilors result in high overhead cost for staff, administration & infrastructure, - Lack of capacities, - Lack of funds to implement LLG Plans, - Lack of revenue base for LLGs to generating income for sustainability, - Unwillingness of Public servants to move to Districts & LLGs, - Lack of accountability of leaders, and - Services still not reaching down the people especially at rural areas. MAJOR CAUSES OF POOR SERVICE DELIVERY Corruption & instability Poor personnel Management Systems & processes Poor budgeting & implementation Inappropriate agency structures Lack of funding Not Community Driven PROBLEMS INTERNAL TO SERVICE DELIVERY AGENCIES Poor financial Management systems & processes HIV/AIDS Cumbersome & Ineffective intergovernment Financial arrangements Lack of accountability for performance Law & Order Problems Poor Economic Performance Government Initiatives The Government is aware that the Organic Law has not been fully implemented and is; • Currently reviewing the Organic Law to strengthen both the Administrative and Political structures with the view to improve services delivery. • pursuing improved functioning of sub-national government through a number of initiatives spearheaded by different departments such as the establishment of DDAs in all districts, • Revived the National Monitoring Authority as the agent established under the Organic Law to monitor the implementation of the reforms in country. . • Re-emphasis on Medium Term Development Strategy is a priority and remedial measures have been undertaken by the Government to ensure that improved services are delivered to the people • The Public Sector Reform Management Unit (PSRMU) now Office of Vision 2050, of the Department of Prime Minister is administering the Government Strategic Plan for supporting public sector on the Public Sector as a key development objective, the improved efficiency and performance of Provincial and local-level governments in the delivery of core services. Continue.. • Addressed the issue of decline in the flow of funding and increased the level of funding to Local Governments • Carried out District Roll-out programs to bring financial services out to the districts • Administers a number of programs seeking to provide funds directing to the districts level (District Roads Improvement Programs, and District Service Improvement Program) • Developed new inter-government financing arrangement. • Strengthening the functioning of the sub-national government through Provincial Performance Improvement Initiatives (PPII) which is supported by AusAID. • Revived the National Monitoring Authority as the agent established under the Organic Law to monitor the implementation of the reforms. • PNG Urban Local Government representing the professional interests of LLGs (both rural and LLGs) who involved in other respective programs. Conclusion • PNG is a developing country. • Government has taken the right direction in readdressing the reforms in ensuring services are effectively delivered to all.