Local government database
The database is a collection of the major legislation and policies dealing with local government in Africa. Countries provide for local government in a wide variety of ways depending on their political, economic and geographic situation. Some countries have recently emerged from civil war and thus provide for local government in the peace agreement that ends the conflict or in the interim constitution that governs the transition to democratic government.
Local government may be purely a creature of statute with devolved powers or enjoy constitutional protection as autonomous government with its own powers and functions. In countries with a federal form of government, the state/ province may have the constitutional authority to regulate local government.
In order to reflect the different ways that local government is provided for in states and to make it easier to draw comparisons between different countries, the legal instruments are classified according to nine standard headings, with each heading corresponding to a specific type of political/legal instrument where local government is commonly provided for.
The nine categories are peace agreements, interim constitutions, final constitutions, sub-national constitutions, national legislation, national policy, sub-national legislation, sub-national policy, commissions. The database can thus be searched by country or by any one of the above instruments.
Currently the database contains information on Sudan, Kenya, Ethiopia, Uganda and Zimbabwe. Building a comprehensive database on all countries in the region will be a long term project, because the legal instruments are generally not easily accessible online.
We also see this as a communal project that can benefit other universities, researchers and practitioners working in the local government sector. LDPHS would like to call on every organization or person with copies of local government instruments for any country in Africa to make those available to us so that we can publish them on the database. Feel free to contact us to find out how you can participate. Otherwise find us on Facebook or Twitter.
The database has been made possible through the generous support of ICCO, the Interchurch Organisation for Development Cooperation.