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Local level restructuring: 725 units suggested in LLRC’s final report

  • PM Dahal yet to receive the document due to his busy schedule
- Binod Ghimire, Kathmandu
The LLRC has sought time from the prime minister to submit its report for today, but it was yet to hear from him till Tuesday night

Dec 21, 2016-Nine months after its formation, the Local Level Reconstruction Commission (LLRC) has finally completed its report, recommending around 725 local units (village and municipal councils) in the new federal set-up.

However, the commission is not sure when it can submit the report to Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal, owing to his busy schedule.

“We have sought time from PM Dahal for Wednesday to submit the report,” said LLRC Chairman Balananda Poudel.

But the commission was yet to hear from the prime minister till Tuesday evening.

The commission’s failure to submit its report despite completing it and seeking time from the prime minister comes at a time when there are fears that the agitating parties could refuse to take ownership of the report.

After failing to carry out works in eight districts of Province 2 largely due to opposition from the Madhes-based parties, the LLRC had finalised its report in consultation with other parties. Some Nepali Congress leaders’ demand that the LLRC must go to the respective districts had even resulted in resignation of one Ranjan Kumar Singh, one of LLRC members, as the coordinator of Province 2.

Nonetheless, as things stand now, the LLRC is waiting for time from the prime minister to submit its report in which it has suggested 725 local units.

After two revisions of its terms of reference, the LLRC had decided to keep the number of local units across the country between 507 and 744.

Earlier, the ceiling was fixed at 565.

But following reservations, mainly from the leaders from the Nepali Congress, the commission—as per the directive from the government—on October 22 had decided to increase the ceiling to 744.

“Once the report is received, the new local units will come into force, as they will replace the existing local units (217 municipalities and 3,117 village development committees),” said Dormani Poudel a member of the commission.

According to LLRC Chairman Poudel, the commission has restructured the local units in the eight districts of Province 2 after consulting maximum numbers of parties available.

The LLRC has fixed 13 local level units each in Saptari and Dhanusha, 14 each in Mahottari and Bara, 11 in Parsa, 12 in Siraha, 15 in Rautahat and 16 in Sarlahi.

The regional parties, which support the incumbent government, have been objecting to the LLRC’s work, arguing that it would be restructuring of local units is a futile exercise unless the dispute over the provincial boundaries is addressed. They are also against the existing criteria for the restructuring of the local bodies and demanding that population be made the sole basis to fix the numbers of local units.

Major parties, on the other hand, have been making a pitch for holding local polls at the earliest, but they are yet to decide whether the elections should be conducted in the existing structure or new set-up. The KP Sharma Oli-led government on March 14 had formed the nine-member LLRC to restructure the local bodies as per Article 295 of the Constitution of Nepal.

Published: 21-12-2016 08:35

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