LAHORE - Punjab Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif has congratulated Mayors, Deputy Mayors, Chairmen and Vice Chairmen District Councils for administering oath of their offices, saying local bodies are an effective system of resolving the problems of the masses at local level.

“Local governments will start functioning from January 2nd, 2017 in the province and activation of this system will help resolve the problems of the people at lower level and process of development will speedily be forwarded,” Shehbaz Sharif said yesterday.

He added the local governments are being empowered while decision has been taken to give them financial autonomy under Provincial Finance Commission Award 2016. “Accountability is also necessary along with powers and responsibilities,” he held.

The CM further said that 44 per cent increase has been made in the funds of local governments as compared to previous year. He stressed the local bodies’ representatives will have to come up to the confidence reposed by the people in them at all costs and made public service their mission. He expressed the hope that the LB representatives will work hard for serving the people and utilise all their energies in this regard.

He assured his full support to local bodies representatives and added that they should serve the people with honesty and selflessly.

 

MAJOR STEP TOWARDS STRENGT

HENING DEMOCRACY

Punjab Minister for Local Governments Mohammad Mansha has said the local government system in Punjab will largely help address the issue of corruption along with providing facilities to the masses at their door steps and instantly addressing their problems.

Talking to a PML-N delegation, the minister greeted the office bearers at the Local Governments at the level of Metropolitan and the Municipal Corporations and the Municipal Committees on their swearing in the office, and said that the newly structured Local Government system will be prove a major step towards strengthening democracy in the province.

The Local Governments institution, he said, is the frontline of the PML-N government to cater to the needs and address woes of the public at the lowest level. Mansha further said the local governments will get hefty Rs391billion under the Provincial Financial Commission Award which all will be spent through them, on the public wellbeing and developments schemes at the grass root level.

The minister said the government has decided to provide more financial autonomy and make more powerful to Local Governments in administrative matters. At the same time, he announced, the LG representatives will not be without checks and balances and be held accountable for their performance. “The funds allocated for one head of development will not be shifted to any other. Similarly the discrimination in the allocation of funds for rural and urban UCs has been dispensed with as such both sides will now have equal amount whereof development uplift in both areas will remain at par.”

Mansha Butt said through the Provincial Financial Commission Award an equitable, fair and transparent distribution of resources has been formulated for every area of development while the CM has announced to encourage with more funds those LGs which will provide better results. The funds of the LGs will also be regularly audited.

For maintaining law and order, he said, the responsibility will rest on the Mayors, Deputy Mayors, Chairmen and Vice Chairmen along with the DC and the DPO of a district. “For a better coordination between them, district committees will also be put in place,” he said, adding the LG institution will be fully functional from Monday throughout the province.