PM asks local representatives to act against drugs, terrorism

Jago News Desk Published: 25 February 2024, 04:24 PM
PM asks local representatives to act against drugs, terrorism
Photo: BSS

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Sunday called upon the local government representatives to work against drugs, terrorism, militancy, and corruption to take the country forward.

"Corruption, militancy and terrorism emerge from the drugs. I wish our society be freed from it. We want (people's representatives) to take special steps to raise awareness among the people and thus to take the country forward," she said.

The premier said this while addressing a function as the chief guest organised on the occasion of the National Local Government Day-2024 in the capital's Bangabandhu International Conference Center (BICC).

She said the most important thing is to build a society free from terrorism, militancy, corruption and drugs, and the representatives of local government should pay special attention to it.

She stressed the need for raising awareness against drugs in the society as it steers the young generation to indulge in other offences like terrorism, militancy and corruption.

Sheikh Hasina also focused on the recent progress of Bangladesh, which was attained during her government.

The prime minister asked the local representatives to start waste management in villages and conservation of water bodies for protecting the environment.

"Unless we start waste management from the village-level from now on, there will be a problem," she observed.

Mentioning that there are master plans on sewerage for cities and towns, she called for developing a sewerage system up to the village-level, preparing such master plans.

Sheikh Hasina said the local bodies play the most critical role for the overall development of a country. So the local government will have to be further strengthened in the future, she said.

"We from the centre (government) will make arrangements, but the local government bodies will have to work at grassroots for the overall development of the country," she said.

Mentioning that Bangladesh Awami League has been in power since 2009, she said today, Bangladesh has stepped into a level of development and it will further move forward.

The head of the government said, "We will have to make sure that Bangladesh does not fall behind. So, you (people's representatives) will have to do your given responsibilities so we can take the country forward".

The National Local Government Day is being observed for the second time with the theme: "Local government will be smart: Rights to services will be ensured".

With Local Government, Rural Development and Cooperatives Minister Md Tazul Islam in the chair, Local Government Division Secretary Muhammad Ibrahim delivered the welcome address.

Dhaka North City Corporation Mayor Atiqul Islam, Barishal City Corporation Mayor Abul Khair Abdullah, Shariatpur Zilla Parishad Chairman Sabedur Rahman Khoka Shikdar, Chairman of Bagha Upazila in Rajshahi Layeb Uddin Ahmed Lablu, Panchagar Pourasava Mayor Zakia Khatun, and Chairman of Jagadal Union Parishad at Dirai Upazila in Sunamganj District Humayun Rashid Lablu spoke on behalf of the representatives of different tier of the local government bodies.

The Prime Minister advised the public representatives to consider usefulness of projects before taking those, saying: “If you are going to take a project, please don't take it for the sake of taking a project, rather think whether it will be useful”.

She, for example, said that ponds are being dug for fresh water. The water of that pond will be purified and given to everyone. It was seen that on two sides of the pond, big ditches were made to dump the waste. If you throw waste next to the fresh water, crows will throw that waste into the water. So, how will you get pure water? This must be kept in mind while taking up the project. It should be done at a proper distance so that nothing else gets damaged, she added.

Regarding the project devising and taking, the premier said that many government officials are there, they also give various advice, and some also think that if a project is implemented, an amount of commission will come.

“Please do not go for this arrangement,” she told the people’s representatives, adding, “Projects should be taken on a priority basis.”  

She continued, “As an elected representative, you will have to keep the promises you made to the people.”

Sheikh Hasina said, “As local public representatives, you have to be accountable to the people. Government employees work for a certain period of time, you are the people's representatives. Accountability only goes to you and us, the representatives of the people.”

She asked the public representatives to keep the promises they made before the people and undertake the right projects which would benefit the people most.

Citing Bangladesh as a delta land, she stressed the need for conservation of water bodies, including rivers, canals, channels, beels and haors.

The prime minister asked the local representatives to enhance the revenue generation for their own bodies, promote food production through cooperatives, protect arable lands and pay attention to the operation and services of community clinics.

She said the budgetary allocation for the local government sector was only Taka 5,799 crore in 2005-2006 fiscal year, which is Taka 46,704 crore in the 2023-2024 fiscal year.

Source: BSS