LAHORE - In a major development, the Punjab government has finalized a draft Local Bodies legislation to make changes in General Musharrafs system of district governments to enhance the role of provincial government in the decision-making process at the district level. Punjab governments spokesperson Pervaiz Rashid told TheNation that a draft legislation regarding new system of local governments was lying in Punjab Assembly Secretariat to be passed by the Assembly in the near future. According to him, the next local elections will be held on party basis and the new system will be an amalgamation of the old system and the present one with provincial government having dominant role in the new scheme of things. But he was not sure as to when the fresh elections will take place. It may be noted here that since the appointment of administrators in place of nazims in January 2010, the government had been groping around in the dark for finding a basic framework within which the new system would work. The question before the authorities is that should the government revert back to the previous system of Municipal Corporations or continue with the present one; or should it be an amalgamation of the two. This problem seems to have been addressed now, but the government is reluctant as yet to give any precise date for holding fresh polls. Punjab Senior Minister Raja Riaz said PPP wants LBs elections without any further delay as it was hampering development work at the district level. He also threatened that his party may move a resolution in Punjab Assembly to press the government to announce date for polls in the province. Meanwhile, it has been learnt that local governments in Punjab which are functioning without their political heads since January 2010, are less likely to have them at least for another six to eight months, as Punjab government is not serious about holding local elections, apparently due to political reasons. All district governments in Punjab are currently being run by their non-political heads-the administrators, directly working under the control of provincial government. Legally speaking, the Punjab government is not bound to hold fresh elections until August 23, 2011 and even beyond this date, as it enjoys a legal cover not to undergo such an exercise under the Punjab Local Government (Amendment) Ordinance, 2010, last amended in October 2011. The ordinance only binds the government to give a precise date for holding local polls till August 23, 2011, but no legal restriction applies on it regarding the time-frame within which they should be held. The government is at liberty to wait for August 23 this year and then give a precise date stretching over any period of time-five, six, seven months and even beyond that. The Punjab government also has the option to further amend the local government ordinance through Punjab Assembly to delay the local elections for an indefinite period. Under the Constitution, local governments is a provincial subject and it is totally on the will of provincial governments to take whatever decision they like about the fate of district governments.