16 July 2019 | BALOCHISTAN – LEAD for SDGs programme team conducted ‘Provincial Stakeholders’ Consultation Workshop on Localisation of SDGs in Balochistan’ in Quetta, to understand the context, political and governance dynamics, progress updates and relevance of programme interventions in addressing challenges on the localisation of SDGs in the Balochistan province.
Stakeholders representing the local council’s association, public representatives, civil society, bar councils, UN agencies and development organisations participated in the workshop and discussed the challenges and issues of the province.
UNDP Pakistan Provincial Representative, Mr. Zulfiqar Durrani, presented the overview of the UN MAPS approach of SDGs implementation. He mentioned that this approach has the political commitment and consists of a theory of change that allows policy mainstreaming, stakeholder engagement, brings ownership through consultations, prioritisation and integration of SDGs and based on taking innovative actions. He revealed that the provincial SDGs framework has been drafted and it is currently in the approval processes.
UNDP Consultant on SDGs Localisation, Mr. Rafi Ullah Kakar, shared a few glaring facts of local governments empowerment and challenges. He revealed that according to the Local Governments Act of the Balochistan Province, local governments are responsible for 40% of the community development work of their respective constituencies, but they merely receive 6%-7% of resources from the provincial ADPs. Mr. Kakar mentioned that to localise the SDGs agenda at the grassroot level, there is a dire need to define roles and responsibilities of both provincial and local governments. He stated that it is very disappointing to share the analysis of the last 10 years of PSDP spend in the Balochistan province. It reveals that most of the investments were made only in five sectors, in which the education sectors’ 99.9% of spend was made on the construction of new school buildings but not to improve the quality of education.
Team Leader of LEAD for SDGs programme, Mr. Ali Imran, presented programme context, design and logic and envisaged results to re-validate the intervention approaches and to gain support and synergy. Stakeholders shared their feedback, suggestions, and commitment to supporting the programme.
Member of the Balochistan Provincial Assembly and Advisor to the Chief Minister Balochistan, Mr. Abdul Khaliq Hazara, appreciated the efforts to engage and discuss to resolve existing glitches of the governance system to truly empower the local government representatives for effective implementation and localisation of the sustainable development goals agenda in the far furlong areas of Balochistan. While sharing his views, he mentioned that Peace, Justice, and Strong Institutions are the core of sustainable development as peace and justice allows communities to attain basic necessities of life and strong institutions enable the right environment for public service.
The provincial workshop ended with the declaration of continuing support for the LEAD for SDGs programme with the aim to empower and build capacities of local government system in Balochistan.