DEMOCRACY & POLITICAL EMPOWERMENT

Rupantar Strengthening local governance is a central government priority and various legislations have been enacted or reformed to this end, which presents opportunities for organizations working on strengthening governance and social accountability. The 2009 Pourashava Act provides for people’s participation and involvement in planning and budgeting. More importantly, this legislative reform has enabled local citizens to have their say in the UP affairs more directly thus creating a formal basis for institutionalizing social accountability within UP governance. LEBs are not too aware of their roles and do not always recognize an advantage in operating with increased transparency. Citizens are not sufficiently informed and organized to engage with UPs in participatory planning and budgeting. Citizens also continue to have difficulties accessing resources and services of various line departments, CSOs and private sector service providers. The participation and representation of the poor and women remains unsatisfactory. In exploiting this opportunity, it is important to ensure that the voices of the poor and poor women in particular, are heard. Rupantar has been executing a total of 4projects in 8 districts (Khulna,Bagerhat, Satkhira, Jashore, Chuadanga, Pabna, Barishal & Pirozpur) to achieve the above objective with the grant support of Swiss Agency for Development & Cooperation & Democracy International.