Local Governance in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa: Regimes Response and People Perceptions
The passage of the 18th Amendment to Constitution of 1973 of Pakistan is a major constitutional development to strengthen local system of government in Pakistan. The amendment constituted one of the most dramatic devolution of power since drafting of 1973 Constitution. The increased authority accorded to provincial governments has enhanced their ability to retain control of their revenue; however, most taxes will continue to be redistributed by the center. The amendment authorizes the provinces to establish the local government system. This paper focuses on the failure of various provincial governments to conduct periodic local body’s elections and to implement the system. The study also focuses on the political leadership insincerity in their commitment to devolution of power to the local representatives. The study finds out that contrary to non-elected institutions elected institutions are to greater extent reluctant to empower local representatives. The study also finds out that despite lack of political will, unsound financial conditions remained a major obstacle in deepening the roots of these institutions. These elected representatives at federal and provincial level half-heartedly supporting this system as they think of the later will reduce their influence and will decrease their power base.