Urban Governance and Solid Waste Management : The Most Neglected Sectors of Pakistan
Local Governance in Pakistan is the Biggest issue as Several Experiments have been done which instead of strengthening and improving the Local Governance have weakened it to the level that we have been facing the problems waste Management , Infrastructure , transport and Communication , lighting , Population . There are several factors which are involved such as lack of awareness , Maladministration , Corruption , Encroachments , China Cuttings and selling precious land to the Builders without conduction any Physical Study or Environmental Study of any Small or large Construction Project .
The Town or City planning is almost invisible which may play the Vital role for building and developing Economically viable and Transport Connected Cities with planning to establish Schools , Colleges , Factories , Hospitals and Other Industries as per the Master plan of the Cities . The Planning has become only the paper work to execute the Projects but in real sense , It has never been practical . As a result unplanned construction creates problems for the commuters and residents . Even the Industrial Units are set up in residential areas creating Environmental Issues and Pollution.
The Local Governance System introduced by General Musharaf was much better as compared to previous and current local System specially the Commissionerate System adopted by Sindh has created problems since people are compelled to approach Deputy Commissioner for their local needs since TMAs have been inefficient and politically influenced as these have failed to deliver the Municipal Services and Waste Management Strategies to make the Cities Clean and Environmentally Sound by adopting Green Energy initiatives . Compellingly , Punjab has established Waste Management Companies in the Seven Big Cities i.e Lahore ,Faisalabad , Gujranwala , Multan ,Sialkot , Rawalpindi, Bahawalpur to cater the needs of Waste Management . The Waste Management Companies has really brought change in Punjab specially Waste Management , Factory Waste and Waste to Energy Initiatives .
SCIP has operations Northern Region of Sindh .ie Sukkur , Khairpur ., Shikarpur , Larkana and Now in Jacobabad under NSUSC . There is also plan to initiate operation of Central and Southern Region. NSUSC is providing services like Water , Sanitation and Drainage and Solid Waste Management but the people are criticizing the quality of Services and The Blame game between the Municipal Corporations and NSUSC has further aggravated the Situation for the Citizens and the Commuters.
On the pattern of Punjab , Sindh Government has also established Sindh Solid Waste Management Board through passing Sindh Solid Waste Management Act 2014 but its operations have only started in Karachi but it will take some time to start operations in rest of Sindh . alternatively ADB funded Sindh Cities improvement Program is already running .
While KPK has upgraded its Local Governance System and TMAs to provide Services of Solid Waste Management but it is too early to predict . Where as Baluchistan has not taken any initiatives for Solid Waste Management except the Traditional TMAs dealing with Water and Sanitation ,and Solid Waste Management Issues . There is no Uniform mechanism of Urban Governance and Even the newly passed LG laws have curtailed the Powers of Administrator and Mayors as compared to Local Government Ordinance 2001 . The Districts were preparing the Development Budget themselves and Even introduced local taxes to generate revenue . The Account -IV was used for District Resources by the DCOs of Grade 20 and Executive Officers of BS-20 .
The Finance is the lifeline to run the projects and It was first time that Finance and Planning Departments were established at District Level to Prepare Budget for The District and revenue Receipts to cover the costs of Deficit . The Local Government was headed by Nazims at District , Tehseel and Union Council levels . There was smooth flow of Funds but the only flaw was the Monitoring and Control of funds . This could have been improved by amendments rather than changing the Whole system overnight . Though , Punjab has maintained a mixture of Both Local Governance System of 2001 and Commissionerate System but this is not enough to provide Service the People .
In Sindh, Commissionerate System Revival has created number of Governance issues and Even the DCs and ADCs do not know what they have to do but only DC seems to be the powerful with Executive Powers. The People have to go DCs for construction of Drains , Crossovers and Lighting Issues since TMAs are Monitored and Managed by DCs all over Sindh .
ECP held elections of Local Government Elections last year in Phases under the Directives of Supreme Court of Pakistan but Chairman and Mayors have not assumed their charges , No Budgetary allocations have made . Even the uncertainty looms whether they will start their work before the Tenure of Current PML N led Government ends . The Constant changing of Schedule by ECP cast a Shadow of Doubt over Local or Urban Governance . The Mayor of Karachi has not been selected as he facing charges in High Court . Though Election of Reserved Seats have been done .
Finally , we conclude that unless a Uniform Local Governance System is introduced at Federal Level , the Provinces are incompetent to deal with issues of Solid Waste Management and Urban Governance as after 18th Amendment , the departments that have become the provincial subjects are not properly managed by Provinces since no resources have been transferred just the swarm of Employees have been handed over to the Provinces to Manage . ECP and Federal Governments should consult the Provincial local Governments to amend the Provincial Local Government Bills or Acts and make them uniform to make them more result oriented .
The CDA Islamabad Model is best but it also needs improvement . Creating Solid Waste Management Companies and Regulatory Bodies such Solid Waste Management Regulatory Authority to check Solid Waste Management Companies performance and Service Delivery . Even the Solid Waste Management Companies may be Privatized for strict Vigilance . The Solid Waste Management Companies must have members from Community , Civil Society and Education Officers . The Education Department will help create awareness regarding the Hazards of Water and Sanitation , Solid Waste Management and Waste to Energy Concepts among the Students of All ages to make the Process Successful.
This research Article first Published on Urban Policy Institute Web