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GOVERNANCE & ADVOCACY

Councils and councillors have an important role advocating on a broad range of issues on behalf of their communities.

WHO IS OFFICIALLY RESPONSIBLE FOR ADVOCACY?

An important good governance issue relating to advocacy is that the responsibility and accountability for advocacy needs to be clear.

In its formal decision-making role, council can officially advocate to external bodies or levels of government on behalf of the community and municipality. Public statements are usually made by the mayor or the Chief Executive Officer (CEO), although some councils have internal protocols which empower particular councillors to issue statements on matters within their portfolios or allow individual councillors to advocate on issues which affect their wards.

One of the roles of individual councillors as representatives is to advocate to council on behalf of their constituents. This is legitimate, as long as it’s done within the framework of good governance in terms of language, using appropriate forums and focussing on issues rather than personalities.

For more information about the differing roles of councils, councillors and the CEO see Roles and relationships.

FACT

“Councils need to be very clear about who is responsible and accountable for advocacy.”

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