Conflicts among councillors in the local government authorities: A tale of Msalala District Council

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African Journal of Governance and Development
This paper focused on conflicts among councillors in Tanzania's Local Government Authorities, where qualitative approaches were employed in data collection and analysis. The study focused on understanding the causes and effects of conflicts in the Local Government Authorities where Msalala District Council in Shinyanga Region was used as a case study. A sample of 22 participants was interviewed through mobile calls. Various local government documents, including the minutes of meetings and reports, were reviewed. The study found three types of conflicts at Msalala District Council. The conflict between the elected councillors themselves, conflicts between the District Council Chairperson and other councillors and conflicts between elected (Ward) councillors and special seat councillors. It was further found that the conflicts were contributed by the low level of education among councillors, personal interest and selfishness, poor communication, conflicting roles and unequal distribution of resources. The study found that the conflicts among the councillors affected the implementation of projects in the council, reduced the morale of the special seat councillors and increased unnecessary costs to the council. Different mechanisms have been adopted to resolve conflicts, like collective bargaining and cooperativeness, which are emphasized for the growth of local government authorities, and this reduces the rate of biased decisions. This study recommends training for councillors immediately after being elected to provide awareness of their roles and duties in the local government authority.
A paper submitted to the African Journal of Governance and Development Volume 12 Issue 2 of December 2023
Councillors conflicts, Councillors’ role, Conflicts in the council, politico-administrative conflict, Special seat councillors