Public Defense of a Ph.D Research Scholar at Department of Sociology
- 11:00 am
- Department of Sociology, UoP
This study analyzed the role of local government in evolving representative leadership conducted in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan. Efforts are being made to answer 'how' and 'why' questions while exploring the potential of local government in promoting congenial environment for the evolution of political leadership from institutional perspective as envisaged in theory.
Qualitative research methodology was employed to generate and interpret the data collected through in-depth individual interviews, focus group discussions and personal observation from respondents selected purposively. District Karak and Swabi were selected as complementary to utmost understanding of core idea in a single case study design.
The study found that some socio-cultural, political and religious factors derailed the process of local government to develop in linear fashion as prescribed in theory. Among these, local power structure hindered participation, and representation of previously marginalized local people. Local elites were powerful enough to challenge the new positions created by local government. Due to their strong socio-political status, they easily manipulated the novice system in their own interest. Similarly, patriarchy impeded the institution of local government to harness gender parity in local political arena.
It was found that tension between federal and provincial governments adversely affected local government in producing an egalitarian system of decision making at grass root level. It is highlighted that the central government of General Pervez Musharraf used local government for legitimizing its own government at federal level. Provincial governments too were reluctant to share power with district government and hence, administered a fragile structure of local governments within their jurisdictions just to fulfill the constitutional requirements. Moreover, political parties, through their affiliates bypassed the structure of local government. Local elites affiliated with different political parties over shadowed the newly created positions in local government. Consequently, the hypocritical attitude of political parties added to the dilemma of failed decentralization in evolving representative leadership in Pakistan.