Punjab Minister for Local Government Mian Mahmood ur Rahseed on Wednesday said that the local government elections in Punjab will be held on May 15, 2022 and the PTI government had made practical efforts to strengthen local bodies.
He was addressing the inauguration of re-launching ceremony of Post Graduate Diploma in Local Self Government organized by PU Department of Political Science in collaboration with Sangat Development Foundation (SDF) at Al Raazi Hall.
PU Vice-Chancellor Prof Niaz Ahmad, Punjab Secretary for Local Government Dr Naeem Rauf, Chairperson Department of Political Science Prof Dr Iram Khalid, Executive Director SDF Zahid Islam, faculty members and a large number of students participated in the event.
Addressing the ceremony, Mian Mahmood ur Rasheed said that the PTI government had taken several initiatives and involved all relevant stakeholders to prepare the finest draft for Local Government Act.
He said that this should not be the work of members of provincial and national Assemblies to perform the works that should be done by local government representatives.
He said that the members of the parliament should truly play the role of a “lawmaker”. He said that the PTI government was empowering local bodies and despite several concerns, the government had ensured elections in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. He said that we had introduced several reforms in the Local Bodies Act and proposals had been made for direct election at mayor level too.
He said that in order to strengthen the local bodies, a suggestion was being given that even if the local bodies were dissolved by any government, the election commission would conduct next elections within 90 or 120 days.
He further said that a proposal was also being given that the constituencies of local government would be set for 25 years. He said that the local body elections would be held in phases.
Appreciating Dr Iram Khalid on launching the diploma programme, he said that this academic contribution would help create awareness in society and improve the system. PU VC Prof Niaz Ahmad said that the university administration in the recent three years had introduced a number of academic programs to solve socio-economic problems.
He said that these academic programs were aimed at fulfilling requirements at local and national level. He said that the university was also playing its role to help policymaking institutions. He thanked the minister for his role in development of the university being an alumnus of the PU. Prof Dr Iram Khalid said that this diploma programme was a need of the hour since the local government bodies were being restored and strengthened. She said that this diploma would help the government and people in creating awareness and resolution of the problems.
This report was first published in Business Recorder on Jan 20, 2022.