Coordination as elusive as ever
The residents of Dhaka city, it seems, will continue to suffer due to lack of coordination between different utility service providers and two city corporations.
An order issued by the Prime Minister's Office (PMO) on June 27 last year with the pious objective of ensuring the much needed coordination between all the city corporations of the country and utility service providers is found to have little impact.
The PMO circular asked the heads of different public sector organisations to join the coordination meetings of the city corporations to ensure proper implementation of the government's decisions. They were also asked to make available the progress reports on development works to the city corporations.
The utility service providers are still doing their development or repair works ignoring the coordination need. They, in most cases, avoid maintaining communication with the city corporations. Even these agencies do not value their relationship with each other or with the city corporations
A case in point is the recent digging of the newly paved road and demolition of a part of the road-divider on the Red Crescent end of the newly built Moghbazaar-Tejgaon flyover.
The Dhaka Power Distribution Company (DPDC) took several weeks to dig a small part of the road for laying the high-voltage power cables, causing serious disruption to movement of vehicular traffic on this important road communication artery of Dhaka city. Weeks have gone by after the completion of the work, the agency concerned has not yet repaired the road.
There is yet another instance of serious lack of concern among the utility service providers about the welfare of people living in Dhaka city. It also concerns the Moghbazar-Tejgaon and Mouchak-Eskaton twin flyovers.
The flyovers plunge into total darkness soon after the dusk as the street-lights are not lit. Vehicles use the facilities at huge risks. Such a situation has been prevailing for nearly four months or so. This paper had published a front page picture showing the Moghbazaar-Tejgaon Flyover immersed in total darkness. But nobody apparently took notice of it.
More than a month back, a Dhaka resident sent a message to the mayor of Dhaka North City Corporation (DNCC) informing of the state of affairs of the two flyovers after dusk. The mayor, much to the surprise of that individual, responded within a couple of minutes thanking the latter for making him aware of the situation. But, later, it transpired that the flyovers do not belong to the DNCC but to the Local Government Engineering Division (LGED). However, one DNCC high official reportedly talked to the relevant official of the LGED about the problem.
Since no measure was taken on the part of the LGED even after a month, the DNCC sent a letter to the LGED reminding the latter of the dangers of keeping the flyovers concerned in darkness after dusk. That was a month back. But nothing has happened until now.
If this is what happens with lighting of a few dozen street lights along two important city flyovers even after intervention by a major city corporation, one can well understand the effectiveness of the PMO order concerning 'coordination' between many public sector agencies.