Introduction to Public Administration

POLITICAL REFORMS:District, Tehsil, Functions of Union Council, Fiscal Reforms

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Introduction To Public Administration­MGT111
In this lecture we will examine the Political reforms, Administrative structure and Financial
arrangements (PFC) in greater detail.
Political Reforms
Elctoral Arrangements: The foundation of the electoral structure for the three tiers of local
government is the union council. The union is a multimember ward for the election of members of the
union council that is, each constituency is on average 25,000, and each union council is composed of 21
directly elected members. The nazim and naib nazim (mayor and deputy mayor) are elected on a joint ticket.
The remaining 19 seats are, as discussed in last lecture, as following:
12 Muslim seats, 4 of which are reserved for women;
6 seats for peasants and workers of which 2 are reserved for women;
1 seat for minority communities;
Indirect Elections
The nazim of the union council then becomes member of district council and naib nazim of union
council becomes members of tehsil council.
The union councilors constitute the Electoral College for the district or tehsil councilors and for
the district and tehsil nazim and naib nazim. 1/3 of seats are reserved for women (directly elected at union
council level and elected by Electoral College of Union Councilors at tehsil and district level).
Figure 1
Indirect Elections
Tehsil Nazim
Naib Nazim
Union Naib Nazims
Union Nazims
(Ex Officio)
(Ex Officio)
Zila Council
Tehsil Council
Union Nazim
Naib Nazim
Naib Nazim
General Seats
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In addition 5 percent of district and tehsil seats have been reserved for peasants (in rural
constituencies) or workers (in urban areas), and 5 percent for minorities. Thus overall districts council and
tehsil council are made up of about 2/3 directly elected members and 1/3 indirectly elected including nazim
and naib nazim. The size of district and tehsil councils varies according to the number of union councils
within district. Each tier of local government has a term of office of 4 years, with 2 term limit for nazimeen
and naib nazimeen. The indirect elections system is illustrated in Figure 1.
There is a departure from convention and in the Devolution Plan, at district level representation of
marginalized groups is intentionally designed in the election. Thus, there are 33 % seats for women in the
District Council. Similarly 5% seats are for workers and 5% for minorities.
In order to have better quality of elected representative a condition of matriculation/secondary
school has been kept.
Likewise for better representation of marginalized groups following seats are kept at Tehsil level:
33% women seats
5% for workers/peasants
5% for minorities
Qualification of at least matriculation / Secondary certificate or Equivalent.
Each tier of local government has a term of office of four years, with a two-term limit for nazimeen
and naib nazimeen at all levels of government .
Functions of Union Council
We have discussed the functions of district council. And we have also discussed the function of
Tehsil council. Union Councils as we know are the lowest local unit in rural areas (the lowest unit in urban
area is town committee. A Union Council as we know has a population of 25,000 performs following
1. Municipal function is the function of sewerage and sanitation i.e. cleanliness of area.
2. Finance: Performs financial function of managing expenditures and rousing revenues.
3. Pubic safety: Managing bridges, culvert etc.
4. Health: Provision of basic preventive health care, like controlling epidemics etc.
5. Education: Provision of basic primary education.
6. Literacy: Literacy programmes for adults who were unable to receive primary education.
7. Justice: Provision of justice in civil cases through "masalihat Councils"
In addition Union Council also performs following functions:
a.  Undertake development projects in connection with above mentioned functions.
b. Impose taxes, to fund annual development plan. The proposed revenue raising authority of
Union Council is: fee for licensing of professions and vocations, fee on sale of animals in cattle
market, market fee, fee for certification of births, marriages and deaths etc.
c.  Local securities system-union guards
d. Creation of villager council, citizen like community boards.
Structure within local government
We have discussed the administrative structure of local government in the last lecture and it was
mentioned that the executive branch of each district government has 10 to 14 departments, The DCO, the
highest-ranking civil servant in the district, heads the District Coordination department. An Executive
District officer (EDO) heads each of the remaining departments. The staff at district and tehsil level was
mentioned. In addition three groups of employees were assigned to the new district governments. These
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1. Federal employment groups, primarily District management Group (DMG) and the Audit and
Accounts Group.
2. Former rural district council employees; and
3. Provincial employment groups, particularly Public health. Engineering Department (PHED)
Rural Development, Local Government, health and Education.
A large majority of district staff formerly belonged to the provincial employment group, particularly
education. Most are in grades 1-15 (90% of district staff in NWFP and 83% in Sindh) Tehsil Municipal
Administration (TMA) inherited staff from the former urban council and rural district council and also
some provincial PHED staff where these have been devolved.
Fiscal Reforms
Areas of expenditure responsibility of the federal and provincial governments are set out in the
Constitution of Pakistan as mentioned before. The Constitution is silent on the remaining functions
(functions other than federal and provincial government) and assumes by default that these remaining
functions are to be performed by the sub-national (that is, provincial or local) governments.
Thus, according to the Constitution, the federal government is responsible for foreign affairs,
defense, banking and currency, postal service, transportation (ports, airports, railways), while the main
provincial responsibilities are police services, justice, roads, education and health.
The actual assignment of functions remained much more centralized than the Constitutional
provisions required, as higher levels of government played a dominant role in areas of shared responsibility
The Constitution accepts that the actual or implied assignments of expenditures and revenues will
lead to vertical fiscal imbalances between the upper two levels of government (Federal & Provincial) which
are to be resolved through revenue sharing. Thus, the Constitution also sets up the National Finance
Commission, an institution assigned the task of determining appropriate revenue sharing arrangements
among the federal and provincial governments.
Table ­ 1 shows the responsibilities of province, District and Tehsil governments.
Table - 1
Tehsil, Taluka, or Town
Agriculture extension
On-farm management
Soil conservation
Water Supply and
water supply and sanitation
inter tehsil road
Street lighting
Parks and playground
Parks and playgrounds
Street light
Municipal regulation
Municipal regulation
Mines and mineral
Industrial and labor
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Under Devolution Plan, there were no shifts of responsibility from the federal to the provincial
governments. The initial attempt was to bring about changes that would not require any constitutional
amendment, which the devolution of any function to the local governments from the Federal Legislative
List (or even the Concurrent List) would have required.
As the previous table indicates, significant functional transfers did occur from provincial to local
In Pakistan, revenue sharing is the dominant form of federal-provincial fiscal relations. The main
source of provincial revenues is a transfer based on a share of federal tax collections. The decision on the
list of taxes ("divisible pool"), the ratio of the provincial-federal share of the pool and the formula for its
distribution to the provinces is to be fixed at least once every five years by the National Finance
Commission (NFC). This has been discussed in the topic Public Finance.
Provincial­Local Transfer
All the four provincial government share resources with district governments. Just as there is
Federal Divisible Pool, there is Provincial Divisible Pool. This Pool comprise: transfer from federal divisible
pool, straight transfers from federal government and provincial tax revenue. Sindh PFC estimates the shares
of provincial and district government for both current and development expenditure. The Sindh PFC
decided that for current expenditure, the Provincial Divisible Pool comprises:
Federal divisible pool transfer
Federal straight transfers
Provincial tax revenue
The transfers to districts were based on gap between district expenditure and revenue transfers
from provincial government to districts on the basis of population, tax collection and backwardness index
of districts.
Now we will examine the weaknesses and strengths (success) of Devolution Plan and Local
Government Ordinance 2000.
We will first look at the weaknesses and then strengths. Some of the weaknesses of the local
government system are:
1. An attempt to undermine provincial autonomy. The provinces now have to systematically
evolve mechanism to share resources. Also prior to this system, provinces were autonomous
and had centralized system. People from remove areas in the provinces had no access to
provincial headquarters.
2. Violation of a fundamental structure of constitution. The Constitution does not provide
local government structure.
3. Resistance of bureaucracy against system. The power of bureaucracy has weakness and at
the district level DCO is answerable to elected nazim.
4. Role of members of legislative assembly. The members of legislature have greater role in the
development of the area and more answerable to people.
Some of the strengths of the system are:
1. Unleashed horse of bureaucracy has been bridled. The office of DC has been now
brought under the control of elected representative.
2. Elimination of urban-rural division. Attempt has been made to reduce the gap between
urban and rural areas.
3. Formula - based division of financial resources. The PFC now has to share resources under
a formula, which is logical and appropriate.
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4. Grass root organizations. The local government system has established grass root
organizations like citizen community board to oversea the working of government
5. Enhanced representation of women.
6. Political linkage
7. Autonomy of local Representatives
Examined local government structure and functions in greater detail.
Also examined the weaknesses and strengths of local government.
Table of Contents:
  1. INTRODUCTION:Institutions of State, Individualism
  2. EVOLUTION OF PUBLIC ADMINISTRATION:Classical School, The Shovelling Experiment
  3. CLASSICAL SCHOOL OF THOUGHTS I:Theory of Bureaucracy, Human Relation Approach
  4. CLASSICAL SCHOOL OF THOUGHTS II:Contributors of This Approach
  5. HUMAN RELATIONS SCHOOLS:Behavioural School, System Schools
  6. POWER AND POLITICS:Conflict- as Positive and Negative, Reactions of Managers, Three Dimensional Typology
  7. HISTORY OF PUBLIC ADMINISTRATION I:Moghul Period, British Period
  9. CIVIL SERVICE:What are the Functions Performed by the Government?
  10. CIVIL SERVICE REFORMS:Implementation of the Reforms, Categories of the Civil Service
  11. 1973 CONSTITUTION OF PAKISTAN:The Republic of Pakistan, Definition of the State
  12. STRUCTURE OF GOVERNMENT:Rules of Business, Conclusion
  13. PUBLIC AND PRIVATE ADMINISTRATION:The Public Interest, Ambiguity, Less Efficient
  14. ORGANIZATION:Formal Organizations, Departmentalization
  15. DEPARTMENTALIZATION:Departmentalization by Enterprise Function, Departments by Product
  16. POWER AND AUTHORITY:Nature of Relationship, Delegation of Functional Authority
  17. DELEGATION OF AUTHORITY:The Art of Delegation, Coordination
  18. PLANNING I:Four Major Aspects of Planning, Types of Plans
  19. PLANNING II:Planning ProcessThree principles of plans
  21. DECISION MAKING:Theories on Decision Making, Steps in Rational Decision Making
  22. HUMAN RESOURCE MANAGEMENT (HRM):Importance of Human Resource, Recruitment
  23. SELECTION PROCESS AND TRAINING:Levels at Which Selection takes Place, Training and Development
  24. PERFORMANCE APPRAISAL:Formal Appraisals, Informal Appraisals
  26. PUBLIC FINANCE:Background, Components of Public Finance, Dissimilarities
  27. BUDGET:Components of Public Income, Use of Taxes, Types of Taxation
  28. PUBLIC BUDGET:Incremental Budget, Annual Budget Statement, Budget Preparation
  29. NATIONAL FINANCE COMMISSION:Fiscal Federalism Defined, Multiple Criteria
  30. ADMINISTRATIVE CONTROL:Types of Accountability, Internal Control, External Control
  31. AUDIT:Economy, Effectiveness, Objectives of Performance Audit, Concepts
  32. MOTIVATION:Assumptions about Motivation, Early ViewsThree Needs
  33. MOTIVATION AND LEADERSHIP:Reinforcement Theory, Leadership, The Trait Approach
  34. LEADERSHIP:Contingency Approaches, Personal Characteristics of Employees
  35. TEAM I:Formal & Informal teams, Functions of Informal Groups, Characteristics of Teams
  36. TEAM II:Team Cohesiveness, Four ways to Cohesiveness, Communication
  37. COMMUNICATION I:Types of Communication, How to Improve Communication
  38. COMMUNICATION II:Factors in Organizational Communication, Negotiating To Manage Conflicts
  39. DISTRICT ADMINISTRATION:The British Period, After Independence, The Issues
  40. DEVOLUTION PLAN I:Country Information, Tiers or Level of Government
  41. DEVOLUTION PLAN II:Aim of Devolution Plan, Administrative Reforms, Separation of powers
  42. POLITICAL REFORMS:District, Tehsil, Functions of Union Council, Fiscal Reforms
  43. NEW PUBLIC MANAGEMENT (NPM):Strategy, Beginning of Management Approach
  45. MANAGERIAL PROGRAMME AGENDA II:Theoretical Bases of Management, Critique on Management