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Municipal Services Program

Description of the Project

The following paragraphs provide an overview of the nature of the work to be accomplished under each of the planned MSDP interventions in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa:

1. Improved basic service delivery in a transparent and accountable manner.

Majority of the project funds (approximately 60%) will be used for upgradation of municipal infrastructure. Necessary systems and procedures will be designed and implemented to ensure that construction activities are fully integrated into a public service improvement approach in each municipality. In order to achieve this systemic integration, this project component is further divided into infrastructure, community engagement, capacity building/HRD and management systems reform.

1a. Infrastructure up-gradation:

Since the resources are limited in the context of on-the-ground needs, this activity will focus on certain essential urban services such as:

  1. Safe drinking water
  2. Sanitation
  3. Sewerage and drainage services
  4. Solid waste collection and disposal
  5. Capacity building and HRD
  6. Streets and street lighting
  7. Markets

1b Citizen Engagement: A high degree of citizen involvement in the processes of infrastructure schemes identification, prioritization, implementation, monitoring and operation will be attempted to ensure that need-based and user friendly schemes are selected and completed in a timely manner resulting in equitable access to improved municipal services. In order to ensure active community participation, partners with relevant experience will be engaged for social mobilization and organization of communities/beneficiaries.

Open citizen access to municipal services related decision-making processes and information sources will be provided to facilitate citizens‟ advocacy and oversight roles through use of proven tools of community engagement in the socio-cultural and administrative environment of the selected local areas. These will include public awareness campaigns to encourage public scrutiny in execution and O & M activities of the service provider MA. General complaints from public and civil society/ community will also be addressed by PMU / MA through a well organized computerized complaint response mechanism. It is expected that improved services will also encourage communities to own the systems and hence share O&M expenditures gradually through timely payment of user charges. This will enable MAs to continue to provide high quality and efficient municipal services in the long run. Internet, print & electronic media will be used to take public into confidence about the programme operations and physical progress as per provisions of Activity Agreement. Lessons learnt from various other programmes such as NUDP (NWFP Urban Development Sector Project), Community Infrastructure Project/s, Social Action Programme Pakistan, and “Districts that Work” will be incorporated in the MSDP design and implementation. Success stories developed by projects and programmes in other parts of Pakistan like “Urban Unit” and “Punjab Municipal Development Fund Company” will also be considered for suitable adoption/adaptation. Engagement of citizen/communities in the health and hygiene awareness campaign shall be a key component of the programme. Conservation of water resources, proper storage and use of drinking water, household level filtration, adoption of appropriate sanitation practices, waste reduction and reuse etc. shall be some of the themes to be considered under this component. In this regard, the GoKP has already developed a draft “Behavioural Change Communication Strategy” (BCC) which is in circulation for finalization.

To closely monitor the progress of this component, performance indicators would be set along with benchmarking. A Citizen Reporting Card (CRC) survey will be launched after the improvement in works are completed to assess the lapses/ faults in services enabling the MA to pay attention to the voices of consumers and address them to their satisfaction. Detailed SOPs and manuals for citizen engagement would be developed by PMU through outsourcing to reputed experts and organizations.

1c. Management system improvement:

The GoKP is beginning to grapple with the multi-faceted array of policies, laws and regulations that are critical for effective municipal governance. A number of other international bodies are already engaged with the GoKP in the articulation of specific urban policy prescriptions and instruments. The implementation of MSDP in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa will be undertaken in collaboration with other donors in this sector to ensure that consistent advice is being offered to the provincial partners. In addition, under USAID‟s previous local governance strengthening activities, particularly the Districts That Work Project, several management tools were developed and field-tested around the country. These included governance assessments, financial management and accounting software, service billing and collecting systems, transparent budget reviews and citizen advocacy campaigns. Similarly other tools have been developed by the “Urban Unit” and “Punjab Municipal Development Fund Company” in Punjab. MSDP will examine this body of knowledge and will adopt/adapt suitable tools to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of relevant government systems.

2. Establish a collaborative partner relationship between USAID and Government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa for Programme design and implementation of an urban sector policy.

This project belongs to a series of large projects funded by USAID and implemented by GoKP. While certain processes and procedures for effective management of USAID funded projects have already been developed, there will be a need for further improving these systems and procedures for the implementation of MSDP. The overall policy guidance will be provided by the PSC headed by the Additional Chief Secretary, Planning and Development Department - the highest level government functionary responsible for strategic planning and development in the province.

A set of criteria, mutually agreeable to USAID/Pakistan and the GoKP, will be established for the selection of districts and towns located within the divisions designated for assistance. A broad selection criteria along with general guiding principles for the MSDP Program are:

  1. Target areas for the MSDP shall be the erstwhile municipal areas of Peshawar, Malakand and D.I.Khan Divisions as notified under the LGO -1979.
  2. Population shall be the basis of financial allocation under MSDP.
  3. Minimum cost of the individual activity under MSDP shall not be less than Rs. 1.0 million.
  4. Separate PC-I shall be prepared for each individual project irrespective of its cost and nature of work.
  5. A Project Implementation Committee headed by PD PMU will be established.
  6. Schemes costing uptoRs. 60.0 million will be approved by the Project Coordination & approval Committee, headed by Secretary LG&RDD with PD, MSDP as Secretary/Member.
  7. Schemes costing above Rs. 60.0 million and up to Rs. 5.0 Billion will be approved by the PDWP, and designed by consultants for quality assurance, to be selected/hired for the purpose.
  8. Project costing up to Rs. 5 million will be implemented by the Project Committee formed from the beneficiary community, where feasible and on need basis.
  9. MAs shall only execute works falling within their technical competency whereas PMU will outsource schemes which are deemed to be beyond the technical capacities of MAs.
  10. The scheme selection will be on the basis of felt need of the communities and the concerned MAs will certify that they have the O&M mechanism in place for undertaking the proposed interventions.
  11. Community participation will be ensured for communities‟ ownership of the completed facilities.
  12. Every scheme, upon completion will be properly handed over to the concerned MAs under intimation to all concerned.

These criteria and proposed mechanisms underpin MSDP design and implementation. A detailed Need Assessment Framework will be developed by the LG&RD Department in consultation with the participating MAs and USAID/Pakistan and approved by the PSC in order to ensure equitable and need based distribution of resources. The PMU will ensure that the framework is effectively implemented and the subprojects are strictly carried out in the areas identified according to the framework principles.

The quality of the partnership is expected to build over time, resulting in faster disbursement after the first year of the project. In addition, the role of the PMU should reduce over the project life as policies and systems are used more routinely and the municipal governments build their capacities to appropriately manage funds for the improvement of service delivery.

3. Upgrade provincial information systems for planning, operations, monitoring and evaluation.

Although this project will focus on public service upgrades in specific municipalities, increasing the capacity of the province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa to share lessons learnt with other municipalities will receive attention. The use of digital information databases for government service management has expanded rapidly in Pakistan over the past decade. At the same time, the rapid growth in the population and infrastructure has made it difficult for provinces to maintain an accurate picture of who is being served, what proportion of population is being served, where are the services in disrepair and what are the overall costs of infrastructure upgrades. The project, through the PMU, will assist the GoKP to upgrade its nascent Provincial Spatial Data Infrastructure (PSDI) to enable the proposed Urban Policy Unit to develop policies and plans for all existing municipal services and relevant aspects of demographics in the three selected divisions of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. This information system is also expected to gradually expand to cover rural areas as well. Furthermore, the system is expected to evolve into a decision support system as the information database approaches completion and becomes of value to ongoing functions of government.

4. Deepen the capacities of local government administration

GoKP is committed to devolve political, administrative and financial functions and authorities to municipal structures under the constitution of Islamic Republic of Pakistan. Elections for new councils are planned to take place over the coming year, but municipal staff requires substantial technical, administrative, finance and accounts training on priority to be able to improve the efficiency of municipal services to meet citizen‟s expectations. Professional training will be imparted to the relevant functionaries throughout the life of the Program in reputed Training Institutes. Capacity issue of Public Training Institutes will also be addressed. Institutional strengthening would form a part of organizational reforms in MAs to overcome administrative, financial and technical gaps. USAID/Pakistan will assist the Government to develop standard training materials through partners like USAID funded Assessment and Strengthening Program. This may include training on the maintenance of services, provision of equipment, training of trainers, and other interventions based on the identified needs. MSDP will also provide assistance for the establishment of professional networks designed to disseminate knowledge and experience among a wide range of municipalities in the province throughout the life of the Program with an eye on sustainability. Different government, semi government and other training facilities such as PARD (Pakistan Academy for Rural Development) and Local Governance School (LGS), and National Institute of Public Administration (NIPA) Peshawar will be associated as training providers for these training program(s).

 

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