Delay in drafting laws may put federal and provincial govts at loggerheads

- TIKA R PRADHAN, Kathmandu

Oct 25, 2018-

The central government’s delay in drafting necessary federal laws could pit it against provincial governments. Amid complaints of the lack of required human resources, some of the provincial governments have started introducing provincial laws on their own much to the chagrin of the federal government.

The federal government and the Province 2 government are already at loggerheads after the latter endorsed the Provincial Police Act through its

provincial assembly. The federal government has said that the Police Act of Province 2 cannot be implemented without Federal Police Act.

Province 2 Chief Minister Lalbabu Raut on Tuesday told Co-chairman of the ruling NCP Pushpa Kamal Dahal that his government would

introduce necessary laws even if the federal government failed to draft related laws on time. The Karnali Province is also drafting necessary laws for hiring technical staff to implement the budget.

“We are preparing to hire temporary technical staff to ensure timely implementation of the budget,” said Prakash Jwala, minister for financial

affairs and planning of Karnali Province. Other provincial governments have, however, indicated that they would not follow suit of Province 2 despite being discontent with Kathmandu’s indifference towards their concerns. Ministers from Province 3 and Gandaki Province have said that they would continue pressing the federal  government rather than confronting.

Salikram Jammakattel, minister for internal affairs and law of Province 3 said they would wait for the federal laws before endorsing the provincial legislations, including laws on police administration and public service commission. The provincial governments have been at odds with Kathmandu for months, accusing the federal government of being reluctant in decentralising the centre’s authority as per the spirit of federalism. They have been complaining that even eight months after their formation, most provincial governments are still understaffed as the federal government fails to depute enough officials to the provinces.

The last hour post-ponement of the first Inter-State Council meeting scheduled for the second week of September by Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli has only worsened the situation. Sources claimed PM Oli was delaying the Inter-State Council meeting as the federal government had not prepared necessary laws, leaving him without agenda for the meeting.

Secretaries at the PMO said they had been engrossed in the inter-state issues almost on daily basis. “The process of inter-state council meeting could begin after the ruling NCP’s standing committee meeting,” said Kundan Aryal, press adviser to PM Oli. The provincial governments are also concerned over the delay in forming the public service commission which is essential for the recruiting process. Currently, all provincial government are operated by the staff deputed by the centre. Once the State Public Service Commission is set up, the provinces could recruit staff as per their requirements.

Published: 25-10-2018 06:34

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