Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (K-P) will implement a new municipal system from August 14, under the municipal corporation in Peshawar, while also establishing district municipal committees. A chief coordinator officer will lead the district council while a chief municipal officer will function in the municipal corporation.
On August 14 the district government system will be abolished and the new system will function temporarily until the next municipal elections, to be held on June 30, 2013. K-P Chief Minister Amir Haider Khan Hoti will make this announcement on Independence Day.
According to the Local Government Bill 2012, the municipal corporation and councils will be established much like the system introduced by former president Ziaul Haq in 1979 which provided wards for cities and union councils for rural areas. Eleven seats will also be reserved for minorities, women, farmers and labourers.
The municipal corporation, to be led by a mayor, will only be set up in Peshawar, while districts councils will be established in 24 other districts led by a chairman.
Females will have 10 per cent representation in the districts while minorities and technocrats will have 5 per cent each. At least 11 members will be office bearers in union councils who will also, according to their seats, be members of municipal committees and district councils.
All members will be elected on an individual basis and allowed to bring a no-confidence motion against other members. According to the new system, seven male seats, two female, one minority seat and one seat for farmers and labourers have been allocated in each union council.
The members of the municipal corporation, district and union councils will enjoy municipal powers, however they will not have administrative powers. Departments transferred to the district will stand dissolved in the provincial departments while the seats of DCOs and ACOs will become DCs and ACs.
These institutions will be liable to impose taxes in their areas and a local finance council led by the minister for treasury will be established to supervise and fund these committees.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 13th, 2012.