Virtual Kollage: The functions of Local Government

Posted by / Wednesday, 12 October 2016 / No comments

The functions of Local Government



LOCAL GOVERNMENT
Introduction
A Local Government is a local political unit of the state which is established by law with the powers to administer the local areas on behalf of the central government.

FUNCTIONS OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT
Law and order
One of the functions of Local Authorities is to maintain law and order. Where any of the bye-laws of a particular locality is flouted, the relevant local agencies are there to enforce such laws. Local Authority Courts also exist so that when culprits are tried and found culpable, they could be either fined or asked to serve a term of imprisonment.

Less concentration of power at the centre
The operation of Local Authorities at the local level is just a representation of the operation of the central government. The powers of the central government devolve to the local level so that powers are not concentrated at the centre.

Reduction of workload
As the Local Authorities perform certain function of government at the local level, the duties that would otherwise have been performed by the central government is taken by the local government. This is a reduction of the workload of the central government.

Resource Mobilization
Another function of the Local Authorities is to mobilize resources for the operations of the local governments. Resource mobilization by the Local Authorities takes the form of collecting local taxes, property rates, taking of facilities or loans from the commercial banks.

Provision of essential services
Also, Local Authorities provide markets for traders to trade in, they also provide toilet facilities so that those who are hard pressed by nature can use them. They maintain school structures and their maintenance.

Town planning
It is the function of Local Authorities to plan the layout of towns and cities. They have the powers to grant permits for the construction of houses and offices. They also have the powers to pull down any building that is erected without the necessary permit.

SAMPLE QUESTIONS
1. a. What are Local Authorities?
    b. Highlight five functions that they perform.

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