Decentralisation not only promotes power sharing across regions, political parties and ethnic groups, it also creates healthy competition among these groups and thus strengthens democracy. This observation was made by Federal Minister for Inter-provincial Coordination Mir Hazar Khan Bijarani in Islamabad on Thursday. He was speaking at a workshop on decentralization and local government reforms organised by the Pakistan chapter of the World Bank. He said, “[Decentralisation] establishes a participatory style of local governance, and therefore fosters greater social cohesion and stability, and encourages reconciliation and harmony among provinces.” Roy Bahl from Georgia State University gave an exhaustive presentation on decentralisation and local government reforms. Bahl said, “Decentralization is indispensable for economic development and democratization of society to the grassroots level.” Dr Rachid Benmassaoud, Country Head World Bank Pakistan, George Mathew, Chairman Institute of Social Sciences at New Delhi, and Dr Hamid Mukhtar, senior economist, also addressed the participants.
Published in The Express Tribune, June 29th, 2012.
More in PakistanBudget 2012-13: Chasing a mirage