Professor Purshottama Reddy who is attached to the School of Management, Information Technology and Governance participated virtually in the annual conference of the International Institute of Administrative Sciences (IIAS) held in Rome from 27 June to 1 July.
The theme of the Conference was Next Generation Governance and Young Global Public Administration. Reddy presented a paper, chaired a conference session and jointly chaired the meeting of the Programme and Research Committee (PRAC), the main scientific committee of the IIAS. He was elected Vice-Chair of the PRAC for three years, which includes membership of the IIAS Council of Administration; Finance Committee and General Assembly.
The title of Reddy’s paper, co-authored with a master’s student, was the Role of Traditional Leadership in Integrated Developing Planning (IDP): A Case Study of Umhlathuze Municipality, South Africa. This municipality prioritised basic service delivery and had a good working relationship with the seven traditional leaders in the locality. However, these leaders’ participation was compromised by the fact that they did not have a vote, and were not members of any of the Council’s statutory committees.
Furthermore, the budget for traditional leaders was limited; educational skills/development was far from satisfactory; land disputes and disputes over authority and traditional authorities’ legitimacy were ongoing; gatekeeping and politics were still the norm and the communication strategy was not effective. Recommendations included inter alia, crafting realistic solutions to ensure traditional leaders’ effective participation; clearly demarcating councillors and traditional leaders’ roles; empowering traditional leaders through skills development and training, and providing them with the required administrative and financial support.
Reddy also chaired a virtual session on Local Governance and Service Delivery Post- COVID-19 that focused on local governance in a post-pandemic recovery scenario, with emphasis on sustainable service delivery as part of the vision of meeting the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).