CGPA Demands Effective Implementation of the KP Local Government Act

Peshawar, January 12. 2023. Since elections of the Tehsil Council and Village Council/Neighbor Council held in two phases in November 2021 and March 2022, the elected local government members are still facing enumerable challenges to serve their communities in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa

province. Elections of the Presiding Officers of the local councils are still awaited, and meetings of Tehsils’ councils can’t be convened. This has caused huge delays in convening meetings of the local councils, and the elected members have lost almost a year without contributing substantially. 

Muhammad Anwar, Executive Director Centre for Governance and Public Accountability (CGPA) stated that most of the village councils/neighborhood councils have either no offices or these offices are in very dilapidated situation. Government has fixed rent for the village councils/neighborhood councils as Rs10,000 which is not sufficient also. There is a dire need to provide furniture and other office equipment to these offices. 

He stated that the situation is very grim in newly merged districts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. These districts were expecting immediate development work after merging with KP in 2018. Local government could have been a very effective engine for development in these areas. 

He pointed out that though the financial crises are loomed in the recent months only, the provincial government has released not a single rupee to the any of the local governments on account of development budget allocation since the taking of oath by these local governments in May 2022. The releases of funds to local governments for developmental activities in mandatory under the Provincial Finance Commission Award. 

Muhammad Anwar demanded the Election Commission of Pakistan to hold the presiding officers’ elections for the local councils at the soonest. He also demanded the KP government to allocate 30% of development budgets to the local councils. He stated that the KP government should put a mechanism where local governments can contribute to the development of merged areas and in the whole KP province.