The General Assembly of the Rwanda Association of Local Government Authorities (RALGA) held on 06 October 2022 in Bugesera District elected new members of its governing organs including the Executive Committee, the Audit Committee and the Conflict Resolution Committee. It also amended its articles of Association as well as the internal rules.
Madam Nyiramasengesho Jeannette was elected new Chairperson of the Executive Committee. She replaced Mr Innocent Uwimana who chaired since May 2016. Nyiramasengesho is the President of Ngororero District Council in the Western Province. Other elected members of the Executive Committee are; Mr Cllr Rangira Bruno (Mayor of Kirehe District) and Mr Cllr Niyomwungeri Hildebrand (Mayor of Nyamagabe District), First and Second Deputy Chairperson respectively.
The General Assembly also elected Heads of the four Commissions who are Cllr Madam Kalimba Doreen, Cllr Mr Sebutege Ange, Mr Bagirishya Peter Claver and Cllr Madam Uwanyirigira Marie Chantal. They shall head various commissions that are; Decentralization, Finance of local Government Entities, Local economic Development, Social Welfare Development
The General Assembly also elected the members of the Audit Committee who are Madam Rugaza Julian, Mr Mbonyumuvunyi Radjab and Mr Mbyayingabo Athanase.
The meeting elected also the members of the Conflict Resolution Committee as follows; Cllr Mr Dr Nahayo Sylvere, Cllr Mr Ntagungira Alexis, Cllr Madam Ingabire Veneranda, Cllr Madam Niyonagira Nathalie and Cllr Madam Ingabire Dominique.
The new chairperson expressed gratitude to the members for the trust bestowed in her and assured her commitment to serve the Association and to further strengthen its capacity to effectively serve the members.
“I am thankful for the trust of members who elected me as the chairperson for this term. I am committed to serve and I am confident that with their support, RALGA shall reach greater height. I shall strive to strengthen the Association’s organs to ensure that they serve in accordance with national policies and contribute to citizens’ socioeconomic development as per the national aspirations,” said Nyiramasengesho Jeannette.
The outgoing Chairperson of RALGA, Cllr Innocent UWIMANA, highlighted the key achievements of RALGA during his term. He expressed his confidence for a “going concern” of RALGA and its interventions including capacity building of Local government entities, advocacy and representation.
“We have achieved significant milestones in the past six years in all areas of RALGA interventions. We conducted several capacity building programs to empower local leaders and we carried out advocacy in relation to local government economic development. Particularly, during the past six years, local revenues collection has improved and districts budgets increased by about 40%”, Innocent UWIMANA underlined.
“It is my great hope that RALGA will continue to flourish and expand its network locally, regionally, on the continent at the global stage,” he added.
As per its internal rules, the Secretary General of RALGA, Mr Ngendahimana Ladislas, chaired and presided the elections of the governing organs. He declared and confirmed the winners for each position. Elections were conducted in a democratic and competitive manner, with secret ballots.
The General Assembly amended Articles of Association and its internal rules
In addition to electing new leaders of the Associations’ organs, the General Assembly also adopted the amended Articles of Association as well as its internal rules and regulations. The amendments aimed at adapting the Association to the current legal and policy reforms, as well as updating the functioning of the Association to remain relevant in modern arena.
The major change in the Articles of Association touched on membership whereby the members of RALGA shall remain the City of Kigali and Districts with legal personality. Thus, the three Districts that make the City of Kigali shall be represented by the City of Kigali.
Other key amendments in the internal rules included the establishment of the Local Government Women Network and the Local Government Alumni within RALGA. The amended internal rules also streamlined the term of the Secretary General to five years renewable as it was in the Operations Procedures Manual.
Members rewarded for payment of membership contributions
During the General Assembly meeting, all members of RALGA were recognized for compliance in payment of membership fees that allow the Association to meet its obligations.
They included Gatsibo, Muhanga, Rubavu, Nyamasheke, Nyagatare, Nyanza, Ruhango, Huye, Nyabihu, Nyamagabe, Gakenke, Kayonza, Bugesera, Karongi, Burera, Rulindo, Rutsiro, Gisagara, Musanze, Rwamagana, Rusizi and Ngororero. They were all rewarded with trophies for appreciation, which were handed over to them by the Minister of Local Government, Hon Gatabazi Jean Marie Vianney.
Government pledges continued support
The Minister of Local Government, Hon Gatabazi Jean Marie Vianney, who attended the meeting as guest of honour appreciated RALGA for organising a successful General Assembly and especially for conducting fair elections of the Association’s organs. Minister Gatabazi reassured the continued Government’s support and called RALGA members to work in unity and put citizens first.
“When RALGA delivers efficiently, it brings positive impact to the functioning and delivery of local government entities in all areas including governance, economic development and social development. The Government will continue to support RALGA to enable it accomplish its mandate. We shall also support elected leaders for them to properly discharge their responsibilities”, said Minister Gatabazi.