Lalitpur mayor’s junkets under CIAA scanner

- PRITHVI MAN SHRESTHA, Kathmandu

Jul 23, 2018-

The Commission for Investigation of Abuse of Authority (CIAA) has sought details about foreign visits made by officials of Lalitpur Metropolitan City, including Mayor Chiribabu Maharjan.

Following a complaint about high frequency of abroad trips by the metropolis’s officials particularly Mayor Maharjan, the CIAA has asked the Ministry of Federal Affairs and General Administration to send the details about those foreign trips, the spokesperson of the anti-graft agency, Rameshwor Dangal, said.

 According the details available to the Post, Maharjan has visited foreign countries eight times after becoming the mayor.

He visited Japan four times since first visiting the East Asian country on August 30-September 3, 2017, in a disaster-related seminar. He visited Japan thrice in two months in January and February this year.

Other nations he visited include--Thailand, South Korea, Sri Lanka and China.

His latest trip was to China on April 21-23 to as part of the Neighbouring Country Mayor Visit Programme.

Mayor Maharjan has claimed that his foreign visits did not involve any resources from the central government or Lalitpur Metropolitan City.

“Criticism against my visits is guided by the political bias from the ruling party in centre since I happen to be the mayor from the opposition party,” he said.

According to him, his visits to Japan yielded results with Lalitpur Metropolitan City due to receive infrastructure for fire brigade with the assistance of World Bank.  

“Japan also offered us an insulator equipment to burn wastes, but it has not been possible to bring it due to our waste management agreement with another company in Lalitpur,” he said.

Amid complaints about the frequent foreign visits by the officials of the local units, Ministry of Federal Affairs and General Administration issued a circular making it mandatory that officials and staff of local governments obtain the approval of the ministry.

The circular also bars officials and staff of local units to travel abroad with the expenditure from the resources of all three parts of the governments--federal, provincial and local.

Chiribabu MaharjaN’s foreign trips

Date    Country    Issue

Aug 30-Sept 3, 2017    Japan    Disaster related seminar

Oct 10-Oct 12, 2017    Thailand    Regional EST Policy Dialogue for South Asia & South East Asia

Oct 16-20Oct, 2017    South Korea    Climate Change

Nov 5-Nov 8, 2017    Sri Lanka    CityNet Congress        

Jan 16-Jan 17, 2018    Japan    Urban disaster resilience

Jan 24, 2018    Japan     Intl seminar on Build Back Better in Urban resilience  

Feb 26-March 2, 2018     Japan    Waste mgmt study tour

April 21-April 23, 2018     China    Mayor Visit Programme for China’s Neighbouring countries

Published: 23-07-2018 07:21

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