RAJSHAHI, Dec 20, 2016 (BSS)- Addressing a divisional level 'Lessons Learned' workshop some high administrative officials here today stressed the need for strengthening local government institutions like Upazila Parishads (UZPs) for strong democracy and its institutionalization at grassroots level.
They suggested for enhancing skills of the local public representatives of UZP chairmen, vice-chairmen and the field level administrative officials to achieve the long cherished goals of pro-people, service-oriented and transparent UZPs besides empowering grassroots people through strengthening local government bodies.
Uniform development and justice could be ensured through empowering the Upazila parishad body and building their capacities in preparing policies, strategies, work-plans and allocating funds ensuring good governance and accountability.
Upazila Governance Project (UZGP) of Local Government Division (LGD) organized the workshop in association with Commissioner Office of Rajshahi division at Shilpakala Academy Auditorium here.
Commissioner of Rajshahi division Abdul Hannan and Additional Commissioner (General) Munir Hossain addressed the workshop as chief and special guests respectively with Additional Commissioner (Revenue) Aminul Islam in the chair. Deputy Commissioner Kazi Ashraf Uddin and Deputy Director (Local Government) Shawgatul Alam also spoke.
During his keynote presentation, Rafiqul Islam, Divisional Facilitator of UZGP, gave an overview of his project's lessons learned issues. He also put forward suggestions for further strengthening activities and enhancing capacities of UZPs.
Divisional Commissioner Abdul Hannan puts emphasis on empowering and increasing efficiency of the UZPs, elected public representatives and relaxation of administrative control in the activities to give democracy a firm base.
Importance should be given on more service-orientation, especially in health, education, agriculture, fisheries, livestock, poverty alleviation and gender development, rather than only physical infrastructure development.
Awareness of local population about their rights, roles and responsibilities and orienting local governance issues to media people and local government institutions need to be focused properly, he opined.
Upazila Nirbahi Officers (UNOs), chairmen and male and female vice-chairmen and other officials concerned from 58 UZPs in seven districts under Rajshahi division attended the workshop.
In group discussions, they put forward a set of recommendations on how to strengthen the capacity of the UZPs for better service delivery including formation and activating the standing committees, holding the monthly meetings regularly and effectively and preparing the five-year and annual development plans and budget as per local needs and requirements.
Source: Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha (BSS)