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Minister Babalanda Issues Fresh Guidelines To RDCs

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MINISTER FOR PRESIDENCY HON.MILLY BABIRYE BABALANDA NEW ORDERS, GUIDELINES TO RDCs

1.RDCs should not operate from outside their stations. All RDCs should reside in their districts of deployment to avoid operating on remote.

2.As Chairpersons of the District Security Committees, RDCs should have 24/7 telephone access. Their office secretaries should attend to all calls from the public without discrimination. To this end, the Secretary, Office of the President is requested to provide all RDC’s offices with movable landlines.

3.RDCs should liaise with the Chief Administrative Officers (CAOs) to access information on government-funded programs in their districts and they should have copies of the Bills of Quantities for construction projects for easy monitoring and evaluation. They should also physically visit these projects and brief the Secretariat on their progress.

4.As Chief Government Communicators and monitors of public investments at the district level; RDCs should utilize the free government radio programs every Friday of the week to brief the public on the implementation of government programs counter lies of detractors and also respond to public concerns on governance issues. Those in remote districts should liaise with the RDC Secretariat for guidance on how to manage the programs.

5.Every Monday, all RDCs will be required to make briefings on matters raised by the public during radio discussions which require interventions at the national level.

6.Any RDC acting outside their mandate and caught red-handed involved in corrupt acts will be immediately interdicted and charged in the Anti-Corruption Court. RDCs should lead by example.

7.RDCs are instructed to share responsibilities with their deputies to cut red tape and improve services. Sharing responsibility will eliminate performance gaps. The Head of the RDC Secretariat should encourage all RDCs to share responsibilities with their deputies. The culture of RDCs undermining their deputies and delegating non-staffs for official work should stop with immediate effect.

8.RDCs are not permitted to delegate non-staff members to transact business on behalf of their offices.

9.There has been a culture where individuals crowd in the RDC offices but with the objective of conning unsuspecting members of the public. In the future, we will be forced to provide uniforms and identification tags for our secretaries and office assistants in the RDC’s offices countrywide to eliminate conmen.

10.All RDC offices should be opened to the public every working day at 8.00 am and closed by 5.00 pm. The office of the RDC mustn’t be without a senior staff or secretary responding to the public at any one time during business hours. If the RDC is out, the deputy RDC or secretary must be available to meet with clients. The culture of having empty and/or closed offices of RDCs has ended today.

11.RDCs should strictly notify their immediate supervisors if they intend to stay out of their stations for some time to ease monitoring of the office by the Center.

12.For effective communication, the Office will secure a toll-free line for the public and RDCs’ communication with the Center.

13.The RDCs in their capacity as chairpersons of the District Security Committee alongside the DPCs should address the press at least twice a month i.e. the second and last Fridays in a month to update the public on the security situation in the district. This will go a long way to eliminate criminality and to keep the public vigilant.

14.RDCs should not engage in unproductive local politicking which involves taking sides. RDCs are unifiers, chief mobilizers, and central government representatives.

15.My Office, with the assistance of the Secretary, Office of the President and the RDC Secretariat will immediately develop an Online RDC Bio-Data Management System where the public will access information regarding name, contact, and photographs of their RDCs for emergency access and also to eliminate impersonators. I, therefore, require the Office of the Secretary, Office of the President, to urgently provide my Office with these details of all RDCs.

16.Also, in consultation with the Appointing Authority and the technical teams, I will propose reinstating resourceful cadres in the RDCs’ Offices to boost information sharing, intelligence gathering and mobilization as it was the case in the early years of NRM government.

17.The issue of RDCs’ transport will be given priority to ease mobilization and monitoring of government programs. Here, I wish to thank the outgoing Minister and the technical team for building new offices for the RDCs and the procurement of vehicles for some of them.

18.There has been a public outcry of poor public relations by some RDCs. This issue has been raised by both wanainchi and local leaders. I wish to caution RDCs that when you are appointed to this office you are public servants and you need to live up to this expectation. You cannot be RDC with an arrogant attitude towards the public. This is a democratic government that is sustained by the mandate of the wanainchi. Let’s be inspired by the Principal who is a good listener and accommodative while dealing with the public. I don’t expect you to engage in divisive politics in your districts. I will not entertain it as your supervisor.

19.Lastly, there has been an issue of poor working relations and hostility between RDCs, Local Government Officials, DISOs, and the DPCs. It is shameful for public officers who are working for the same government to engage in unproductive fights and disagreements which are usually caused by greed, selfish interests, and failure to appreciate each one’s roles.

20.There has been debate on social media concerning the term of office for the RDCs. I need to point out that RDCs are like Civil Servants. Their appointment is not dependent on the term of office of the President. They can stay in office until otherwise removed or transferred by the Appointing Authority. This means that the term of service of RDCs does not necessarily expire with the election of the President. This is in order not to create a vacuum in leadership but rather to facilitate a transition. I shall however work with the Attorney General to come up with more comprehensive guidance on this matter. For now, though; RDCs are legally in office and I wish to advise them to stay at their stations.

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