Many developing and developed countries introduced such commission many years ago, and ensured budget allocations for LGIs without any discrimination
The Centre for Policy Dialogue (CPD) on Wednesday demanded formation of a local government commission to help local government institutions (LGIs) so that they could contribute to attaining the sustainable development goals.
Distinguished Fellow at CPD Debapriya Bhattacharya said the proposed commission was needed for strengthening LGIs and protecting those from any government intervention in development works.
He came up with the statement while presenting a study on urban local governments’ preparedness to deliver SDGs at a dialogue organized by the CPD at a Dhaka city hotel.
Many developing and developed countries introduced such commission many years ago, and ensured budget allocations for LGIs without any discrimination, he mentioned.
“Our government’s budget allocation system for LGIs has no scientific method,” he claimed, saying that specific criteria based on indicators like population, poverty rate and remoteness should be set for budget allocation.
Debapriya said the Awami League in their electoral manifesto, 2018 had pledged to introduce the district budget.
The CPD fellow suggested the district budget allocation should be made with the guidance of a specific policy.
He said local governments including municipalities and city corporations must be strengthened and considered seriously in attaining the SDGs by 2030.
He said earlier local governments were given a very insignificant role in attaining the MDG, which was identified later as a major shortcoming.
The SDGs, introduced by the United Nations in 2015, are a set of 17 targets to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure peace and prosperity for all.
Earlier it introduced Millennium Development Goals (MDG) and Bangladesh achieved several of its targets.
The CPD’s study says that Bangladesh is set to become more urbanized during the SDG period (2016-2030) and the urban population will cross the rural population by 2037.
The CPD’s study put seven recommendations for preparedness of the urban local governments to deliver SDGs including the formation of an autonomous commission for the local governments, constituting required regulations, empowering women, introducing district budget and creation of a platform for interaction and preserving data.
The independent think tank said the SDGs should be localized in the perspective of the country’s town areas and every urban LGIs should have an individual plan to implement the goals.
Distinguished Fellow at CPD Professor Mustafizur Rahman chaired the program while Local Government and Rural Development (LGRD) Minister Md Tajul Islam, Mayor of Madaripur Municipality Khalid Hossain Yead, Professor Salahuddin M Aminuzzaman from Dhaka University Public Administration Department were present among others.