People’s participation in budget making stressed

LAKKI MARWAT: The Citizen Network for Budget Accountability (CNBA) has expressed its disappointment over the budget-making process at district level in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, saying it lacks people’s participation and transparency.

This was revealed by CPDI programme manager Shoaib Akbar and Inayatullah Khan during a session on Friday. The session was arranged by a community development organisation with the support of the Centre for Peace and Development (CPDI) at the Council Hall in neighbouring Tank district.

The participants shared their views about making budget and said that public participation could make a budget people friendly. They urged the authorities concerned to conduct pre-budget consultative sessions at the grassroots level to provide people with opportunities to give their inputs and suggestions for budget making.

Mr Inayatullah said that local governments failed to ensure public participation in budget-making process, while the district governments did not release any pre-budget statements for public information.

He said that in many districts the authorities concerned did not hold pre-budget consultation with the local people.

The speakers said that the performance of district governments with regard to ensuring transparency in budget-making process was not satisfactory as they did not take any practical steps to enable the citizens to have an easy access to the budget through modern means of information technology.

They said that the websites of district governments were functional in only five districts, while the posts of district planning officers in 11 districts and over hundred posts of subordinate officials linked with budget-related matters were vacant, hindering the process of budget making of local governments.

Published in Dawn, December 9th, 2017

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