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Uganda adopted decentralization in 1997 with the aim of bringing services nearer to communities. Central government continues to provide resources to local governments; however, some communities still experience inadequate service delivery and poor-quality services in construction works, health, education and roads. This article examines the relationship between effective communication (information sharing, cohesion and succession) and the performance of selected Local Governments in Eastern Uganda. Three local governments (Jinja, Tororo and Soroti) were purposively sampled. Using a cross-sectional design, a sample of 313 respondents comprising both political and technical personnel was selected from sub-county and district levels, yielding a response rate of 85.6%. Both quantitative and qualitative data was collected using a self-administered questionnaire and key informant interview guide respectively. Data analysis involved descriptive statistics, correlation, regression and content analysis. Findings revealed that effective communication is essential in building cohesive and effective teams as well as minimizing misunderstandings in local governments. The study concludes that effective communication plays a role in local governments by enabling management to motivate subordinates and improve performance. It recommends local governments to ensure cohesion exists within teams and among the relevant departments, to be open in succession process. This makes employees perform their jobs better, which leads to improved service delivery and provision of quality services.
Keywords: Effective Communication, Local Governments, Performance, Service Delivery, Quality Services, Eastern Uganda