Print Edition - 2016-02-17  |  News

Govt to appoint section officers as VDC secretaries in quake-affected districts

- Bhadra Sharma, Kathmandu

Feb 17, 2016-

The government is sending section officers as Village Development Committee secretaries in the earthquake-affected districts to maintain protocol and to ensure better coordination of reconstruction works at the village level. Non-gazetted officials have been serving as secretaries in the VDCs.

The move comes after protocol issues hampered coordination at the village level for rebuilding houses and infrastructure destroyed by the earthquakes in April and May last year. With senior officers deployed from the centre, non-gazetted secretaries find it difficult to assert themselves to effectively coordinate the local rebuilding works, according to officials.

VDC secretaries, who serve as the key nodal point for all government services at the grassroots, face an increased responsibility as reconstruction activities begin. The secretaries have dual roles at the bodies in the absence of elected people’s representatives. Some secretaries handle affairs of five to seven VDCs as many positions remain vacant.

Confirming the decision, Madhusudan Adhikari, acting secretary at the National Reconstruction Authority, said discussions were under way with the stakeholders to appoint officers to the local administrative units.

Following discussion with the ministries of General Administration, and Federal Affairs and Local Development, the NRA has asked them to send officers after making necessary arrangements.

MoFALD Spokesperson Purna Chandra Bhattarai, however, said the process would take time as the government has to endorse the authority’s proposal to appoint senior officials to local bodies.

In Tuesday’s meeting, General Administration Secretary Tankamani Sharma said the deployment of officers would take time. The NRA has requested the government to take a fast-track approach to hiring officers or deputing available staff immediately.

According to the ministry, 214 VDC offices are running without the secretary. Of them, 78 vacant positions are in the 14 quake-affected districts. More than half of the vacant positions were fulfilled after the parliamentary Development Committee instructed the government to this effect citing the pending reconstruction task.

Published: 17-02-2016 08:12

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