Sri Lanka Institute of Local Governance: Corporate View
Sri Lanka Institute of Local Governance (SLILG) emerged as an institute in the background of the search for a developmental vision for Local Government in the country by catering to the requirements of capacity building in the Local Government sector. The emphasis herein was to consider Local Government as an autonomous, independent sector that could be directly linked to meet the multi faceted needs of the people through an effective, efficient service delivery. The implying characteristics in this are that, being at the grass root level, they are the best suited institutions that could meet these expectations. In pursuance of these expectations, the Parliament established the SLILG by Act No. 31 of 1999. The institute commenced functioning in October that year.
Under the 13th amendment to the Constitution of Sri Lanka, a three-tiered devolved system of governance was created in the country in 1987, as the effective exercise of devolved power is a necessary condition for the realization of democracy and objectives of power sharing. The objective of the SLILG is to facilitate the enhancement of institutional and managerial capabilities of Local Government Institutions and Provincial Councils for the efficient and effective delivery of services to the people and to ensure good governance at regional level. The establishment of SLILG was a logical conclusion in implementing the recommendations of a Presidential Commission appointed in 1997 to address the issues of capacitating the Local Authorities and Provincial Councils.
The goals of decentralization can be categorized as follows:
- Empowering the citizens democratically to manage their local affairs such as education, health, etc.,
- Improving allocative efficiency and effectiveness, ensuring that the allocation of resources addresses the immediate prioritized needs of the society.
- Enhancing the responsiveness of policy making and the implementation in addressing the needs of all target groups.
- To take effective measures on poverty reduction and development.
- Involving the communities in decision making on development works that affect their lives.
Hence, to realize the objectives of decentralization of Powers, the Provincial Councils and the Local Authorities have to be capacitated suitably.The capacity building responsibilities are delegated to the SLILG which operationalises its mandate fitting into a time frame each year.
The Institute was established as a public sector agency to perform the following functions:
- Training Members & Officers and Servants of Local Authorities & Provincial Councils and to assist in building up of a cadre of competent provincial and local government officers and the personnel in the country with a view to ensuring good governance.
- Making available to Provincial Councils and Local Authorities services of specialists in improving their organizational systems and management capability.
- Providing a forum for the critical appraisal of Provincial and Local Government Organizational Management Systems and Practices.
- Assisting the provincial Management Development and Training Units (MDTU) in management development.
- Providing the necessary data and information to the Minister in charge of the subject of local government for formulating national policies on Local Government and Provincial Councils.
- Network with local & foreign institutions in disseminating information, holding conferences, seminars and publishing books and magazines on Provincial & Local Government are the additional operational features of SLILG.
- To ensure the development of human resources of Local Government Institutions and Provincial Councils in order to strengthen their institutional and management capacity.
- To function as the leading centre for Training, Research and Consultancy Services on issues relating to local governance in Sri Lanka.
The above mission leads to the following objectives;(i) To formulate and deliver programmes of capacity building activities for the institutional strengthening of local governance independently and in partnership with Provincial Management Development Training Units (MDTU).(ii) To support and strengthen the capacity of MDTU towards delivering training and development programmes for improving the performance of Provincial Councils and Local Government Institutions.(iii) To function as a resource centre on Local Governance, providing technical and information services for its stakeholders.(iv) To functions as the focal point for Local Governance, networking with relevant National and International Institutions.(v) To provide special support services in the development of human resources, improvement of management systems and facilitate organizational changes.(vi) To build the capacity of SLILG, to provide Advocacy, Training, Consultancy and Research support for strengthening institutions of Local Governance.
Consultancy and Advisory Services of SLILG
The SLILG has set up Eight (08) major divisions for Providing Training, Consultancy and Advisory Services and to embark on relevant research programmes as follows:
- Engineering Division
- Financial Management Division
- Legal & Legislative Affairs Division
- Physical Planning Division
- General Management and Human Resource Development Division
- Research & Development Division
- Training Division
- Director’s Division
Message from the Director…..In keeping with the defined objectives stipulated in the Sri Lanka Institute of Local Governance Act No. 31 of 1999, the institute has embarked on a programme of upgrading the capacity and know-how of the Local Government employees and elected members in the field of local governance. In taking the Governance into practice its defined path, it is imperative to incorporate the positive contributions of the elected members and the employees of the Local Authorities for building up the country. The ongoing massive development activities in all spheres of national economy aimed at improving the infrastructure facilities and providing enhanced services to the people, it must embrace in their wake the active participation of all stake holders in the Local Government Sector.However, the quality and quantity of service delivery by the local authorities to the public are diluted by considerable incapacity which is inherent in the system. The prime cause for this can be traced to the insufficient awareness of the elected members as well as the LA employees on the finer points of local governance since they are often raw hands. This basic know- how and the accrued capacity are essential elements to put the available resources of the local authorities to optimum use for the larger benefit of the public.It is at this juncture the need for the services rendered by SLILG is strongly felt. The capacity building and awareness programme, consultancy and research services provided to the local authorities by the SLILG help to boost up the ability of the LG staff and the elected representatives to make them more capable to deliver to the public in an exemplary manner.The services rendered by SLILG in this sphere for the last 12 years are appreciated by the government and in recognition of the progress made by the institute; the General Treasury had been gradually increasing the HR capital allocation for the SLILG every year. This year too, the SLILG has an increased allocation of Rs. 50 million, a 50% increase. This HR capital allocation is equally divided among all divisions within SLILG to enable them to deliver their services with equal weight age. Thus, the divisions have planned their activities by way of workshops, consultancy, and other services, the details of which are given in the following pages. Each division is allocated Rs. 3 million this year, including that for the Deputy Director (Training) which is revived this year after a lapsIt may also be pointed out that the activities described in this booklet show only the programmes performed by utilizing Treasury Fund. However, apart from the treasury funded programmes which are mainly confined to short term training workshops and consultancy services, the SLILG also conducts various Diploma and Certificate courses to the LA staff and elected members , the durations of which range from one year to five weeks. These courses are conducted in Colombo or in the provinces. Some of these courses are fully funded by donors while others are subsidized by SLILG as the costs of operation of such courses are partially met by contributions from the participants. Apart from this the SLILG also envisages providing short training courses to participants from foreign countries such as Bangladesh, Maldives in the year 2017.Finally, I wish success to everyone involved to complete the activities in full within the year
Mr. Sujeeve Samaraweera
Sri Lanka Institute of Local Governance