Provincial assemblies facing staff crunch

Kathmandu, February 5

The government deployed 20 to 27 employees to all seven provinces but not more than five employees reported to their duties till the first meeting of the provincial assemblies thereby causing difficulties in conducting PA business.

Sources at the Parliament Secretariat said five key  employees who were deputed to all provinces under the Parliament Secretariat’s joint secretaries for 15 days to train Provincial Assembly staff, had to run the first meetings of the PAs due to absence of most government employees deployed to the assemblies.

Under-secretary of Parliament Secretariat Sahajit Rai was deputed to Province 1 to train staffers and aid them with initial preparations, but no provincial staff deployed by the government turned up at the Provincial Assembly Secretariat. “We had to do everything ourselves including the managerial job,” Rai added.

Rai said only two employees came three days before and one officer came today when the PA held its first meeting.

“We have written a letter to the Ministry of General Administration telling it to ensure that the employees deployed to Province 1 should report to their duties immediately,” he added.

Joint-secretary of Parliament Secretariat Banshi Raj Paudel, who has been deputed to Province 2 said only three out of 27 employees came. Since they were all assistant level employees, his team deployed from the Parliament Secretariat could not delegate key responsibilities to them.

“Only three of our colleagues deployed by the Parliament Secretariat did the entire work at the Provincial Assembly,” he said. “We are talking to the Provincial Speaker as to who should be handed over key responsibilities after we finish our term of deputation there,” Paudel added.

Joint Secretary of Parliament Secretariat Rojnath Paudel said the government had deployed 27 employees in Province 3 but there was no staffer present on the day the PA held its first meeting last Thursday. “In this situation, we cannot do our mandated job. We will have to return to the Parliament Secretariat after 15 days. If the deployed employees do not report to their duties, then we do not know who will we handover our responsibility,” he said.

Joint Secretary of Parliament Secretariat Jeevraj Budhathoki, who has been deputed to Province 4, said the speaker of the Provincial Assembly requested him to conduct the administrative job there till the employees deployed to the province report to their duties. “It is not only about running the Provincial Assembly but also about looking after managerial and financial matters,” he added.

Joint Secretary of Parliament Secretariat Surendra Aryal deputed to Province 5 said he has been facing difficulties managing things due to lack of employees. He said there were only two assistant level staffers and they had to sometimes work 16 hours a day.

Joint Secretary Krishnahari Khadka deputed to Province 6 said there were five employees present but out of them three said they could not work due to various reasons.

Joint Secretary of Parliament Secretariat Murari Mahat who has been deputed to Province 7 said there were only two employees and it would be difficult for his team to give all responsibilities to them.

The Ministry of General Administration said that delay in transfer of staffers to the respective provinces had created problems. “The government has already deployed necessary staffers to the provinces, but it is the responsibility of the head of the offices from where the staffers were transferred,” he added.