স্থানীয় সরকারের পৌর প্রশাসনকে শক্তিশালী ও গতিশীল করার জন্য চেতণার উন্মেষ ঘটানোর প্রচেষ্টা

e-Local Government


e-Local Government Vision 2025

Executive Summary:

Local government institutions are the cornerstones of democracy and constitutionally mandated to provide a range of important utility services to citizens. However, for several institutional and political factors the service delivery system in local government has remained ineffective, inaccessible and inefficient for years. Many developing countries including India, Malaysia, Srilanka are harnessing the power of Information and Communication Technologies to enhance the accessibility and efficiency of local government service delivery. In case of Bangladesh, although a few e.Governance initiatives were taken at the national level, local government institutions has yet to receive the due attention. The aim is to explore the use of ICT in:

i) Bringing institutional reform to empower local government bodies.

ii) Enabling citizens’ participation in decision making.

iii) Establishing citizen’s right to entitled information.

With that in mind, by 2025 we envision:

  • All local government bodies truly autonomous, transparent and accountable, technologically equipped political institutions, based on fair and just democratic participation and competition.
  • Establishment of a decision making process that would respond to local needs and expectations. Citizens irrespective of gender, caste and belief will be provided with a platform for deliberation and communication on all policy issues.
  • ‘One-Stop-Center’ for all utility services, including agriculture input and information, primary health care, primary education,  drinking water  and sanitation, electricity, building and housing, town/village security along with existing services.
  • All local government institutions would persuade digital democracy through the use of appropriate and sustainable technology.

ICT  in Local Government:

It is found that application of ICTs can really play a meaningful role in service delivery and decision making and can help establish e-Local Government- based on the principal of digital democracy. Analysis of national and international experiences and views of different actors show that there are some strategic areas where ICT can bring positive changes. Following are few such areas-

  • Access to Public Record: ICT can facilitate digital record keeping system, online file tracking system; online form submission system, digitally accessible database of all necessary rules- regulations, meeting minutes, budget data etc.
  • Efficient Service Delivery: Application of ICTs can take LGIs closer to people. For example, previously, a citizen had to physically come to Dhaka City Corporation office to collect a trade license form or a birth registration certificate. After installation of the official web site of DCC, a citizen can now remotely access these forms/documents and easily download from the website.
  • Electronic Bill Payment: Electricity bill payment through mobile phone has recently been introduced by PDB, Chittagong. This type of ICT application can spare citizens from standing in line and ensure data accuracy.
  • Globalization: ICTs can help the LGIs to cope with the globalization process. It can develop online network among the LGI officials within and outside the country for exchanging new ideas, innovations and experiences.
  • Research: ICT provides access to resources from various national and international sources with ease.
  • Coordination: Application of ICTs can help achieving higher level of interoperability among interconnected and interdependent government and local government agencies.

Factors for establishing successful e-Governance:

Establishing e-Governance in local government institutions is a far reaching reform program which requires reorganization of not only technological and financial system but also knowledge, attitude and perception of all stakeholders including citizens. For a successful implementation of e-Local Government, there has to be:

1. Political will

2. Climate of trust

3. Legal and institutional reforms

4. Process re-engineering

5. Resource mobilization

6. Public-private-community partnership

7. Awareness building

8. Human resource development

Some Actions for Immediate Response:

Ø  Bring changes in the respective local government ordinances to incorporate development and compliance of Citizen Charter as one of their mandatory functions.

Ø  Make available the citizen charter in all possible formats including CDs, web links, electronic (where applicable) and non-electronic billboards in the respective local government units.

Ø   Develop an interactive web portal through which, citizens can monitor the compliance of citizen charter; how service requests received, how many addressed, how many complaints received and what kind of steps taken to redress complaints etc.

Ø  Automate all processes for internal management by using Management Information System which includes software development for personnel management, system, performance evaluation, budgeting, etc. in all city corporations, paurashavas, upazila and union parishads.

Ø  Digitize all service databases including client’s information and service information of all city corporations, paurashavas, upazila and union parishads.

Ø  Develop software and digital database supported Decision Support System for all all city corporations, paurashavas, upazila and union parishads.

Ø  Provide training to LGIs in ICT use and applications.

Ø  Establish interactive websites in all City Corporation and Paurashava offices with features, enabling citizens to track status of service request application, register complaints, put comments on upcoming policies, contact officials etc.

Ø  Establish of Community-Digital-Center in 4886 UPs in all districts throughout the country including fiber optic internet connection.

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Comments on: "e-Local Government" (2)

  1. ABOUT OPEN SOURCE DIGITAL GOVERNANCE::
    ======================================
    Have we any idea what the software we have installed is doing stealthily in the background? If it’s not open source software, can we find out? Usually, the answer is ‘no’.

    Now at present time, it’s clear that how desperately a government agency or a hacker wants to put secret backdoors in our network, devices, and software.

    However, Bulgaria has come forward with an all new set of laws that would be appreciated by privacy lovers and open-source community.

    Our Parliament should pass a ‘Digital Governance Act’ that would require all software written for the country’s government to be fully open-sourced and developed under A2i program under PM’s office.

    This means that source code of software developed for the Bangladesh government would be accessible to everyone and provided free for use without limitations.

    An article of the ‘Digital Governance Act’ should state that administrative authorities must include the following requirements for procuring software:

    “When the subject of the contract includes the development of computer programs, computer programs must meet the criteria for open-source software; all copyright and related rights on the relevant computer programs, their source code, the design of interfaces, and databases which are subject to the order should arise for the principal in full, without limitations in the use, modification, and distribution; and development should be done in the repository maintained by the authority/agency in accordance with (act no….).”

    However, it does not mean that Bangladesh is going to shift to Linux overnight. It means that whatever computer software, code, databases and programming interfaces the government procures will be freely available for others to read, modify and use. It will be a good step for better government software and less abandon-ware.

    The move will also allow researchers and white hat hackers to report security loopholes and vulnerabilities in government websites that are left un-patched for years, helping the government to detect bad security practices earlier.

    However, criminal mind people could also use the flaws for malicious purpose rather than reporting it to the government.

    We hope that Bangladesh will become the country to make a law to enter into open source digital governance.

  2. Cool issue, I didn’t thought this would be so stunning when I saw your title with link.

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