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Local govt instts should be accountable to people

Says Tazul

  • Diplomatic Correspondent
  • 29 July, 2022 12:00 AM
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Local govt instts should be accountable to people

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Local Government, Rural Development and Cooperatives Minister Md Tazul Islam has said capacities of local government institutions of Bangladesh as well as their accountability and transparency will have to be increased to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030.

The minister made the statement at an event titled “Stakeholders’ Conference on Local Governance: Progress, Learning and Way Forward” organised by the Local Government Division (LGD) and the UNDP at the Bangabandhu International Conference Center (BICC), Dhaka on Thursday.

Speaking as the chief guest, Tazul said, “Local government institutions need to be accountable to the people by providing better services for them and the local representatives should earn dignity by their work for the people.”

Addressing the conference as a special guest, Resident Representative of UNDP Bangladesh Sudipto Mukerjee said, “The Efficient and Accountable Local Governance (EALG) project has been working with the local government institutions for the last five years to localise SDGs and build the capacity of Union Parishads and Upazila Parishads and provide policy support to the government for establishing effective local government systems, leaving no one behind.”

He thanked Switzerland and Denmark for their support to implement the project and stressed the importance of continuing the support to the local government.

Swiss Ambassador to Bangladesh Nathalie Chuard in her remarks as a special guest said, “In relation to strengthening local governance in Bangladesh, we work with the government and development partners to ensure transparency, accountability, efficiency and inclusivity so that no one is left behind.”

She further added, “One of the key lessons we learned from EALG is that coordinated development planning and monitoring by the local government is crucial to ensure effective and optimum utilisation of scarce resources and also avoid overlapping of activities.”

Earlier, Md Mozammel Haque, programme analyst of UNDP Bangladesh, presented the keynote paper on EALG project and its key achievements.

Mohammed Mezbah Uddin Chowdhury, secretary, Local Government Division, Shariful Hoque, project coordinator of the EALG project, deputy directors of the local government from nine districts, chairmen and vice-chairmen of Upazila Parishads, chairmen of Union Parishads and Upazila Nirbahi Officers also spoke.

With the support from the Embassies of Switzerland and Denmark, the EALG project of the Local Government Division and the UNDP has been implemented in 251 UPs and 18 UZPs under nine districts.

The project played an important role in identifying and solving local social problems by holding public hearings in Union Parishads and Upazila Parishads. It has not only helped the local government institutions to learn about the public’s opinion on its services, but also to find immediate solutions or plans.