Transforming Bangladesh: A Glimpse into Ongoing Initiatives under the Leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina

Bangladesh is experiencing a profound transformation under the visionary leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina. Driven by a dedication to enhance the well-being of its citizens and promote sustainable development, a series of crucial initiatives have been set in motion, especially during my tenure as the Minister of the Local Government, Rural Development, and Cooperatives Ministry. This article aims to illuminate some of the pivotal ongoing endeavors that are shaping the future trajectory of Bangladesh.

Aram Gram-Aram City: Realizing the Vision 

In alignment with the government’s election manifesto, comprehensive road designs have been prepared for the Aram Gram-Aram City project. This initiative aims to transform rural areas into vibrant urban centers, enhancing living standards and providing modern amenities to the people.

Battling Waterlogging: WASA Takes the Lead

The Water Supply and Sewerage Authority (WASA) has taken crucial measures to eliminate waterlogging, a persistent issue in urban areas. These efforts seek to mitigate the adverse effects of waterlogging and ensure a healthier and more sustainable living environment for the citizens.

Capturing a moment of significance: The Honorable Prime Minister during a visit to the LGRD Ministry, witnessing the ongoing initiatives and developments

Combatting Dengue and Ensuring Cleanliness 

Public awareness campaigns have been launched to prevent dengue and mosquito-borne diseases. Additionally, City Corporations and Municipalities are being encouraged to discharge their respective responsibilities in maintaining cleanliness and public health.

Enhancing Accountability in Vehicle Management

A database of vehicles used by City Corporations and municipalities has been established to ensure transparency and optimal utilization of government funds. This initiative not only curtails misuse but also promotes efficient service delivery.

Empowering Municipalities through Capacity Building

Capacity-building efforts are in progress to strengthen the capabilities of municipalities, enabling them to better serve their local communities. This includes training, resource allocation, and support for effective governance.

Streamlining Document Management and Work Processes

Efforts are underway to accelerate document management and streamline work processes. Synchronization of activities ensures efficiency and better service delivery to the citizens.

Upazila-Based Master Plan Implementation

Implementing master plans at the Upazila level is a significant step towards organized urban development. This strategy promotes balanced growth and sustainable urbanization across the country.

My Village My City: A Local Governance Revolution 

As part of the “My Village My City” initiative, local government ward members are being entrusted with clear responsibilities to engage with the public and provide essential services. This includes the establishment of members’ offices, offering various services, and providing a Citizen Charter Office for quick access to services.

Inter-Ministerial Collaboration for Holistic Development

The Local Government Ministry is actively collaborating with various other ministries and departments, such as RAJUK, DPHE, PDB, City Corporation, Municipalities, and more. This coordinated approach ensures that development is holistic and all-encompassing.

Strengthened Coordination and Monitoring 

Effective coordination and monitoring are being reinforced across departments and organizations, including LGED, DPHE, NILG, WASA, City Corporation, Municipalities, Upazilas, and Unions. This ensures that initiatives are on track and the impact is maximized. 

Local Government Day Celebration

Celebrating Local Government Day highlights the importance of local governance and recognizes the tireless efforts of individuals working at the grassroots level to serve the community.

LGED: Ensuring Quality in Road Construction

The Local Government Engineering Department (LGED) is focusing on quality assurance for road construction projects. This includes material quality, training for contractors and workers, and the automation of LGED activities to ensure transparency and efficiency.

Addressing Public Grievances: A Unified Approach

A specific policy is being formulated for road digging in metropolitan areas, aiming to address public grievances efficiently. Collaboration between the City Corporation and WASA will lead to more effective problem resolution.

# DPHE’s Endeavors Towards Sustainable Sanitation and Water Management

In a concerted effort to address the challenges of solid and sewage management on a citywide scale, the Directorate of Public Health Engineering (DPHE) has established a City Wide Inclusive Sanitation (CWIS)/FSM Support Cell. This vital unit is actively engaged in providing technical support and conducting capacity-building activities across districts, upazilas, and municipalities throughout the country.

An impactful initiative in progress: LGRD Ministry spearheads Birth and Death Registration, as captured in a meeting with the ICT Ministry, showcasing collaborative efforts for streamlined processes and enhanced civic services

To optimize the use of surface water, DPHE has undertaken feasibility studies and investment projects aimed at supplying water to city corporations and municipalities through well-coordinated clusters. This strategic approach ensures the efficient utilization of available water resources for the benefit of urban centers.

Aligning with the government’s commitment outlined in the election manifesto, the implementation of “My Village-My City” is in full swing. This ambitious initiative aims to extend modern urban facilities to every village, marking a significant step forward in the provision of essential services. As part of this comprehensive strategy, phased implementation of water supply through pipelines has been initiated, accompanied by concerted efforts in sanitation and waste management.

# City Corporation Initiatives for Public Health and Accountability

The City Corporation is actively engaged in a multifaceted approach aimed at raising public awareness to prevent dengue and various mosquito-borne diseases. Simultaneously, the focus is on ensuring cleanliness and implementing necessary measures to ensure City Corporations and Municipalities fulfill their respective responsibilities.

With a keen interest in accountability and the optimal use of public funds, the City Corporation is undertaking the development of a comprehensive database of vehicles used by municipalities, managed by the Urban Development Department. This strategic move enhances transparency and accountability in managing government resources.

A critical mandate has been issued for the nightly cleaning of all city corporation roads to maintain a clean and hygienic environment for residents. Additionally, the transfer of canals from the Water Supply and Sewerage Authority (WASA) to the City Corporation signifies a strategic shift in responsibilities, aligning with the City’s commitment to effective urban development.

Under the purview of the Urban Development Division, municipal capacity building takes center stage. The emphasis is on providing the necessary capacity-building support to municipalities, ensuring they are equipped to effectively fulfill their roles and responsibilities.

The City Corporation recognizes the importance of keeping municipal executive officers’ biodata updated, including their tenure in a municipality and the current duration of their service. This information contributes to a comprehensive understanding of the expertise and experience within municipal leadership.

To ensure effective organizational structure and resource allocation, the City Corporation seeks up-to-date information on the availability of additional manpower in municipalities. This proactive approach ensures that manpower aligns with the organizational requirements and operational needs.

The City Corporation’s initiatives encompass a range of measures aimed at promoting public health, accountability, and effective municipal governance. These steps reflect a commitment to fostering a clean and well-managed urban environment for the benefit of residents and the overall development of the city.

Bilateral discussions at the P4G Summit Colombia 2023: Minister of LGRD Bangladesh, MD. Tazul Islam-MP, engaging in transformative partnerships for sustainability and green growth with Denmark Minister during the sideline meeting on 23 September

Union Parishad: Empowering Local Governance for My Village My City Initiative

In the endeavor to implement the “My Village My City” initiative, local government ward members within the Union Parishad hold pivotal responsibilities and duties. Their role extends to ensuring assurance, fostering public involvement, and delivering public services by actively collecting comprehensive information from the residents of their wards.

To facilitate the provision of essential services, members are encouraged to establish and manage their own offices, generating revenue through various services such as e-services, photocopying, health services, electricity bill processing, visa services, remittances from abroad, as well as sales of bus, rail, and air tickets.

A strategic placement for the display of information in front of the Citizen Charter Office is emphasized, ensuring that all citizens within the ward can access prompt and efficient services. This approach aligns with the goal of enhancing public service accessibility and responsiveness at the grassroots level.

Shifting focus to the Zilla Parishad, there is a pressing need for legislation to effectively manage its functions. The oath ceremony for the elected chairman and members of Zilla Parishad was successfully conducted on November 14, 2022, marking a significant step towards the formal commencement of their responsibilities in 2022. This legislative framework is crucial for orchestrating coordinated efforts and governance at the district level.

Written by-
Mr. Md. Tajul Islam, MP
Hon’ble Minister of Local Government, Rural Development and Cooperatives Ministry

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