Various local govts propose changing boundaries of 92 wards

Published On: March 4, 2024 05:35 PM NPT By: Republica  | @RepublicaNepal

KATHMANDU, March 4: Various local governments have asked the federal government to change the boundaries of 92 wards. After completing such a process, local officials sent a proposal to the Ministry of Federal Affairs and General Administration for decision.

In the Local Government Operation Act-2074 BS, there is a provision that a majority of the village or city assembly of the local level can decide to change the boundaries and number of wards on the recommendation of the respective wards. But the federal government has not yet made a decision regarding these proposals.

The Government of Nepal has a system to determine the boundaries and number of wards in rural municipalities and municipalities. While determining the number of wards, the Government of Nepal has to determine that there should be a minimum of 5 and a maximum of 21 wards in a rural municipality and a minimum of 9 and a maximum of 35 wards in a municipality.

There is a provision that such boundaries can be altered based on the condition of population and population distribution, geographical continuity, compatibility and uniqueness, linguistic, cultural and social uniqueness, condition and accessibility of service facility distribution, existing physical infrastructure etc.

However, since it seems that the Government of Nepal cannot make a decision based on this system alone, the Ministry of Federal Affairs and General Administration has decided to formulate the necessary standards and procedures for the division of wards and boundary changes at the local level.

A meeting of the thematic committee chaired by General Administration Minister Anita Devi on Friday decided to request the Nepal government to proceed with the process of division of wards and changing the boundaries.

Suman Dahal, joint secretary of the Ministry of Federal Affairs, said that the proposals seeking to change the boundaries of many wards have come to the ministry and they are going to request the Nepal government to establish a standard.

In the amendment bill of Local Government Operation Act-2074 BS recently drafted by the government, the government has proposed to make stricter arrangements to reduce the number and boundaries of wards at the local level.

Under the proposed amendment, a committee headed by the District Coordinating Committee will be responsible for analyzing specified criteria and preparing a report while changing the boundaries and number of wards.

According to the proposed arrangement, altering the boundaries and number of wards will no longer be done by a majority of the local village or town assembly. According to the draft, if the law is amended, it has been proposed that it should be recommended to the Government of Nepal only after it is passed by a two-thirds majority of the city or village assembly.

The committee headed by the chief of the Local Level Division of the Ministry of Federal Affairs and General Administration will review such a recommendation and recommend it to the Ministry for consideration. While similar provisions are not currently included in the Act, preparations are underway to incorporate them into the standards and procedures.

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