Local level and local bodies have a key role in service delivery and right fulfillment at the grass-roots level. This is ensured only when there exists good governance and the local bodies/representatives are accountable towards public. To address this issue SAMAGRA organized interaction program with newly elected local leaders on accountability and good governance on June 6, 2017 at Marshyangdi Gaupalika, Lamjung.
The interaction program was attended by 112 participants which included 24 locally newly elected leaders ( Gaupalika Chair, Vice Chair, All ward members, Particular ward elected, non-elected of major political parties), 68 SF members, SAMAGRA’s central and district staffs and media personnel. The interaction program aimed to orient the newly elected local leaders on their function as per new constitution and instruction circulated by GoN and provide an interactive platform to SFs and local leaders to interact on accountability and governance issues.
Mr. Dornath Neupane, Executive Director, SAMAGRA felicitated all the local representatives and wished them for their successful tenure. It was then followed by a brief presentation by Mr. Amar Adhikari, Program Officer, SAMAGRA to shed light on functions of local elected bodies/representatives as per new constitution and instruction circulated by GoN. This was fruitful to both the local leaders as well as public as it helped to build a common understanding on local representatives/bodies function and made them accountable towards public.
During the interaction session participants had an opportunity to share their problems/expectations to their newly elected local leaders. President of Sungava SF said, “I have been using four plastic tunnels for vegetable production but due to inadequate irrigation I have been facing lots of problems. Local bodies should include such issues in their plan to solve problem of small entrepreneurs like me.” The local representatives exhibited strong commitment to work for betterment of people and not let their votes go in vain. The Gaupalika chairperson, Arjun Gurung who is a member of SF and past motivator of SAMAGRA showed commitment to work for welfare of people and sought support from public on this regard. Vice-President of Marshyangdi Gaupalika , Mr. Hom Bahadur BK said, “ Being a Dalit, I know the type of discrimination that dalits have to face. I will ensure fair and equal distribution of resources and will not let favoritism and nepotism influence it by any means. Narayan Thapa, President of Ward-09 showed strong commitment to practice good governance and discourage any kind of misconduct that violates good governance. (Other 3 members of council of Marshyangdi Gaupalika namely Narayan Thapa, Mishra Pariyar and Baburam Thapa are also members of SF).
The participants thanked SAMAGRA for organizing such interaction program which gave locals an opportunity to directly communicate with their locally elected representatives, share their expectation to leaders and make them accountable towards public. Such interaction program is a regular program of SAMAGRA and it plans to conduct series of such program in its program districts.