The urban communities were settled in proclaimed townships and were outnumbered by rural communities which were haphazardly settled on tribal, state and privately owned land. Rural communities were governed by tribal authorities or local magistrates.
The need of local government legislation was therefore recognised soon after independence. An administrative basis for developing a local government and guiding and controlling urban local authorities came about with the establishment of a Directorate of Local Government, which resulted in a fully fledged Local Government and Housing Department.
Governors, deputies and assistants were appointed in the 12 districts - who were responsible for government service and to facilitate delivery - taking government to the people.
However, the country did not forget its origins and traditional authorities played a leading role in dispensing justice and interpreting the law. This ensured that tribal customs and territorial integrity were maintained.
In line with government’s decision to take it’s service to the people, personnel manning tribal offices were educated to read and interpret the laws, codes, circulars and letters sent to tribesmen.