PM Tells DCs to Serve the People
Monday, 26 July 2010

Prime minister Sheikh Hasina urged deputy commissioners to work with a mentality of serving the people, pointing out that they are responsible for conveying the situation on the ground to the government so that it can address the issues.

She was speaking at the inauguration of the three-day deputy commissioners' conference at the international conference centre in the prime minister's office on Sunday morning.

The conference, an annual event that has been taking place for the past 22 years, is designed to offer an opportunity for the head of the government to interact directly with the district-level administrative officers so that the prime minister can have a clear understanding of the situation on the ground.

The prime minister also urged them to keep a keen eye on any possible terrorist activities and attempts to destabilise the country.

Cabinet secretary Abdul Aziz gave the welcome speech at the inauguration.

In her speech, Hasina also said, "The speed of work will have to be increased through proper coordination between district and upazila-level public representatives. Work will have to be done by alleviating, above all, fear, anguish, hatred and partisanship."

She also urged the DCs to keep a close watch on the demand, supply and stock situations in the market in a bid to prevent corrupt syndicates from hiking prices during Ramadan.

Hasina also urged them to be proactive in implementing the budget passed for the current fiscal year, saying "91 percent of the last budget was implemented which has increased confidence among the people."

She also hinted that the new budget would focus more on development at the local levels.

The main principle of the present government is to improve the fate of the common people, and "we are working along that line", she said.

Hasina also said that her party aims at building a self-reliant country, mainly by ensuring food security.

She urged the deputy commissioners to be more sincere about improving local infrastructures and institutions, saying, "The district schools are losing their past glory because of lack of good teachers. It depends on you. No one takes their family to the districts. They leave them back at Dhaka. Naturally, the officers cannot concentrate on their work with their family members away".

Hasina further said, "There are 37 doctors in the gynaecology ward at Dhaka Medical College Hospital. But, there are none at grass root levels. There are officials in many places but, no attendance. Everyone heads to the capital. If we had enough money, we would have shifted the capita".

She also said that district administration officials should strive to become respected and loved in his work area.

Urging proper management of paddy procurement, the prime minister said, "Paddy will also be procured in the future and you must make sure that no one can raise prices by manipulation."

She also emphasised on the need to build more food storages to cope with the after-effects of natural calamities.

Hasina urged the deputy commissioners to create public awareness about stopping environmental disasters, saying "Police will be deployed to prevent sand extraction from rivers."

Participating in the open discussion, Dhaka and Panchagarh deputy commissioners urged amendment to the contempt of court act. Besides, other DCs pointed out various travel and accommodation problems to the prime minister.

The prime minister assured to resolve the problems, saying "I know court contempt is a problem. But the judiciary is independent. We have thought of allocating funds so that the costs of fighting the cases can be provided from the fund".
She, however, said that if the person concerned is found guilty by the court, he or she will have to pay back the expenses.

Members of the cabinet, prime minister's advisors, secretaries of various ministries and other administrative officials were present at the inauguration.

Earlier, the cabinet secretary told that discussions will be held on the deputy commissioners' role in different ministerial and departmental activities including the local government, agriculture, education, home, land, primary and mass education, health and law ministries.

President Zillur Rahman will deliver the concluding speech on the third day of the conference.


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