The Ministry of Federal Affairs and Local Development (MoFALD) has prepared a proposal to build 6,303 buildings for the recently elected local units which would cost an estimated Rs163.31 billion.
The ministry plans to send the proposal to the Cabinet for approval soon. There are a total of 753 local units with 6,938 wards.
In its proposal, the MoFALD has sought new buildings for all local units and 80 per cent of their wards, stating that most of the local units do not have their own office buildings and those who do are in poor conditions.
Given that more responsibilities of public services are handed over to the local governments, there is a need for constructing new office buildings, the ministry has said.
“Office buildings are essential for smooth operation of services. So we are preparing the proposal to send it to the Cabinet for approval,” said MoFALD Secretary Dinesh Thapaliya.
After the local elections were held in all the local units in three phases, people’s representatives are at the helm of affairs at the local levels.
The MoFALD has proposed that the new office buildings of local units would be built based on cost-sharing modality between the central government and the local units, as resources allocated for local units through the current fiscal year’s budget cannot not be used in constructing office buildings.
As per the proposal, the federal government will share up to 75 per cent of the resources needed while the local units will share up to 40 per cent.
The metropolitans will share 40 per cent of the cost, the sub-metropolitans 30 per cent and municipalities and rural municipalities will share 25 per cent of the building cost, the proposal has mentioned.
According to the ministry, the buildings will be built in four years. The tasks including arrangement of land, allocation of budget from local units, preparation of detailed project report, tender and agreement signing with bidders, and construction of building’s damp proof course will be completed in the first year. In the second year, construction of first and second floors of the buildings will be completed. In the third year, the remaining construction will be carried out. Works related to sanitation, furnishing and gardening will be completed in the fourth year.
The ministry’s proposal is completely new and is outside the provision of the current fiscal year’s budget.
“We are also discussing with the Finance Ministry about the resources needed for constructing buildings of local units as per our proposal,” said Suman Ghimire, under secretary at MoFALD. “During the discussion, we are seeking the budget availability from the Finance Ministry for preparatory works for this year.”