LAHORE: Governor Balighur Rehman has sent back the Local Government Bill 2021 to the Punjab Assembly with certain reservations.

The governor said that the Elections Act 2017 did not mention the procedure of electronic voting. “The word Electronic Voting Machine (EVM) and i-voting should be deleted from the bill. If section 187 of the Local Government Bill is implemented in its original form, it will discourage senior officers,” he said, adding this would not only affect the seniority list but also open the way to promote out-of-turn favourite officers.

Mr Rehman further noted that the proposed Local Government Bill recognized the urban-rural divide to some extent but only partially. He said the bill lacked adequate representation in remote rural areas and small to medium growing cities.

The governor said the 46 local governments proposed under Section 7 of the Bill were inadequate for the population of more than 110 million in 37 districts and should be at least doubled

Meanwhile, a delegation of Foreign Affairs’ Department officers from ASEAN countries who attended the course at the Foreign Service Academy called on the governor.

Published in Dawn, September 27th, 2022

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