The two-day orientation workshop for the district nazims was fruitful in terms of understanding the devolution of power. The workshop, held in Peshawar on Tuesday, was attended by 22 newly elected nazims representing various districts.
With a focus on local government systems, planning, development and finance; the workshop informed nazims about the processes and procedures, as defined and formulated by departments of planning and development (P&D), finance as well as local government.
Chitral District Nazim Mughfirat Shah told journalists “this was a good opportunity to interact with provincial government authorities and expunge our reservations on many undecided issues”. He added, “The training process should be extended to tehsil and union council level representatives.”
“Much clarity was needed on many things including the LG legislation, processes and procedures of the newly established local government system. This training helped us understand these areas and provide for open discussion with provincial authorities,” said Mardan District Nazim Himayatullah Mayar.
The district nazim of Hangu, Ubaidullah, said, “The training cleared my idea on the division of power to districts and lower tiers, and for this I am thankful to the organisers.”
According to DI Khan District Nazim Azizullah Alizai, this was a good opportunity to interact with other district nazims and local authorities. “The lectures on finance and planning, as well as local government systems, were new for me” said Alizai, the youngest nazim in the province.
Majority of the nazims agreed that this had been the only opportunity since their election to understand the K-P Local Government Act 2013. The workshop was exemplary in relaying the rules of engagement in a three-tier governance system, with district, tehsil, and neighbourhood councils. In addition, it provided much clarification on fiscal decentralisation, the provincial finance commission award and LG budget rules.
The Local Government Elections and Rural department, along with technical support from Sub-National Governance programme, arranged and sponsored this orientation workshop to strengthen local government institutions and broaden the knowledge of the elected leadership to develop new systems.
Published in The Express Tribune, October 7th, 2015.