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The politics of participation: An in-depth evaluation of Citizen Community Boards in Pakistan

15 July 2006

Mehr Latif - policy study July 2006

Mehr Latif

2005-06 International Policy Fellow
Democratic Governance, Transparency, and Accountability working group

Abstract:
In 2001, the Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf instituted the Local Governance Ordinance. This law was designed to give average people a greater role in government planning via the creation of Citizen Community Boards (CCBs). Made up of twenty-five citizens, and working in co-operation with local governments, these CCBs would undertake development projects such as road construction, lining of irrigation channels, and the development of school facilities. Since the first CCBs were established in 2003, many questions have been raised about their efficacy and independence. Despite the fact that millions of dollars of local government funds have been allocated to CCBs, there has been little systematic analysis of their membership and their activities.

This study concentrated on three aspects of CCBs: their leadership; their ability to encourage citizen participation; and their responsiveness to the needs of local people. This policy brief was written in order to provide policymakers and practitioners with information on how CCB projects are being implemented and recommendations as to how they can be made stronger.

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