MoFAGA aims to settle around Rs 21bn arrears

Kathmandu, March 31

The Ministry of Federal Affairs and General Administration has deputed seven facilitators to as many provinces to expedite its campaign of reducing arrears of all district coordination committees to nil.

Facilitators deputed by the MoFAGA were appointed on contract for three months from mid-March to until mid-June, said Under Secretary Lila Prasad Niraula. The ministry has requested the district coordination committees to take the help of facilitators and step up the process of settling accumulated arrears.

According to the ministry, local levels have accumulated arrears of around Rs 21 billion until fiscal 2017-18. Of them, Province 2 has arrears of around eight billion rupees, while other provinces have yet to settle average arrears of two billion rupees each.

The MoFAGA said Barun Bahadur Pandey (Province 1), Sunil Kumar Paudel (Province 2), Sharad Sharma Bhadari (Province 3), Damodar Hada (Gandaki Province), Krishnahari Gyawali (Province 5), Jagadish Prasad Bhandari (Karnali Province) and Khemral Bhatta (Far-western Province) were appointed as facilitators to help the local levels settle their arrears.

Earlier, the ministry developed Arrears Settlement Action Plan and Guidelines to be implemented by the MoFAGA and agencies under it for the fiscal 2018-19.  The action plan and guidelines have been provided to all departments, projects, programmes, boards, district coordination committees and local levels, requesting them to implement them accordingly.

The law requires the government agencies to perform their business in such a way that they maintain financial discipline and arrears do not exceed one per cent, the arrears of DCCs stand around 39 per cent. Of the total arrears, advance payment accounts for approximately 60 per cent. As per the guidelines, local levels and agencies under the MoFAGA will settle minimum 50 per cent of their existing arrears in the fiscal 2018-19 and gradually reduce it to nil. The agencies under the MoFAGA have yet to settle even the arrears which date back to fiscal 2002-03. The ministry has made a provision of rewarding the concerned offices and their chiefs who succeed in maintaining zero arrears besides initiating action against the employees committing financial indiscipline.