Hands off, Eyes on: Is it a True Reflection of the Administrative Legal Framework of Central-Local Government Relationship in Tanzania?
This article is an upshot of a research work done by the authors on the administrative legal framework of Central-Local Government relationship and its implication on the autonomy of Local Government Authorities in Mainland Tanzania. Tanzania, being a decentralized state, has undergone several Local Government reforms since independence to date. The most remarkable reform was the 1998 -2014 reform which aimed at reviewing the administrative legal framework of Central-Local Government relationship to create autonomous and robust Local Government Authorities (LGAs) in managing their administrative, personnel, and financial affairs, and in determining their own priorities. The desired reform was accompanied by the adage “hands off, eyes on,” meaning that the Central Government would refrain from direct control and intervention over Local Government Authorities. However, in this study it was revealed that despite the amendments made to the local government laws by Act No. 6 of 1999 and Act No. 13 of 2006, the legislative framework of Central-Local government administrative relationship is yet to afford autonomy to LGAs. Therefore, the adage “hands off, eyes on” still remains unrealistic in the context of Central-Local Government relationship. What actually characterizes the administrative legal framework of Central-Local Government administrative relationship is, “hands on, eyes on” and not “hands off, eyes on,” as intended by the Local Government Reform Programme. Key Words: Administrative Legal Framework, Central-Local Government Relationship, Hands Off, Eyes On.