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Balochistan’s local bodies seek financial, administrative powers

Balochistan’s local  bodies seek financial, administrative powers

QUETTA: The mayors of municipal corporations and chairmen of 32 district councils and municipal committees of Balochistan have demanded administrative, financial and legal powers for local bodies under Article 141-A of the Constitution to enable them to carry out their work effectively.

The demand was put forwarded by Mayor of Quetta Metropolitan Corporation Dr Kaleemullah Khan at a press conference after a meeting of chairmen, vice-chairmen, mayors and deputy mayors of local bodies held under his chairmanship.

The meeting discussed issues and problems faced by the elected local bodies because of lack of financial and other powers and suggested measures to improve their performance.

It observed that the work of local government institutions had been adversely affected because powers, privileges and protocol of their heads were yet to be determined.

Dr Kaleemullah said the minister for local government should be appointed chairman of the Local Government Grants Commission and representatives of all local bodies should be included in it. A procedure should be worked out for distribution of grants.

He said that in the provincial budget the government should allocate 33 per cent funds for development and 10pc for non-development expenditures and the power to approve the budget should be given to the local bodies, instead of the Divisional Coordination Committee. A commission should be formed to resolve disputes and improve coordination among the LG institutions.

Dr Kaleemullah said the meeting had suggested that funds should be provided to the local bodies in accordance with their needs. He added that at present mayors, deputy mayors and chairmen of district councils and municipal corporations and committees had no funds for development schemes in their constituencies.

The meeting demanded that chairmen and vice-chairman of local bodies should be given the status of mayor and deputy mayor and no transfer and posting should be made without their approval.

Published in Dawn, June 10th, 2015

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