Dilemma of disharmony between our local government administration and lawmakers has been going on for quite a while now. Especially, conflict between the Upazila Nirbahi Officer (UNO) and upazila chairman over control is really hindering the development work in rural areas.
The pace of development slows down due to poor coordination among lawmakers, upazila chairman and UNO over exercising their power. The conflict reignited recently when the upazila chairman moved the High Court challenging a section of the Upazila Parishad Act, which provides that the UNO will be the chief executive officer of the upazila.
The upazila chairmen think that this act will seriously demean their power in terms of taking key decisions in their respective upazila’s development.
Responsibilities of both public representatives
and government administrative officials should
be clearly specified
There is a blend of organizations and individual players who represent different constituencies and acquire legitimacy from different sources at the upazila level. Needless to say, our Upazila Parishad Act affects the upazila chairmen and their deputies and which is why they might have less control over the main sources of power such as funds and programmes.
The unexpected clash among the MP’s, local lawmakers, UNO’s and chairmen might also have been driven by their impatience to preserve their supremacy at the local level. This certainly exposes the fact that local level bureaucrats did not accept the re-introduction of the Upazila Parishad wholeheartedly.
Thus, the government should take immediate measures to specify the role of both public representatives and government administrative officials at their respective constituencies.