A village is the lowest political, administrative unit. A village consists of approximately 50 or more households. Each village is governed by a Village chairperson and nine other executive committee members.
The parish is the next administrative level up from the village. A parish is made up of a number of villages. Each parish has a parish made up of all the chairpersons from the villages in the parish. Each parish elects, from among themselves, an executive committee. Currently, Parishes are largely involved in settling land disputes and community mobilization for various activities. The parish is run by a parish chief who provides technical leadership.
A sub-county is made up of a number of parishes. The sub-county is run by the sub-county chief on the technical side and by an elected Sub County chairperson, supported by an executive committee. The sub-county has a council, with a speaker and deputy speaker. The council consists of elected councilors representing the parishes, other government officials in the sub-county. In the Municipality, a sub-county is called a division. Mbarara has seven sub counties and 6 divisions.
A county is made up of several sub-counties. Mbarara District has two rural counties: Kashari North and South, and one municipality. Each county is represented in the national parliament by an elected member (MP).
Mbarara district is made up of two counties and one municipality. A district is led by an elected District Chairperson and his executive. There is also an elected District council, with representatives from the sub-counties and technical staff in the district.