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Old Sunday, December 24, 2017
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Default Essay: Accountability is essential to the development of Pakistan.

Someone Please check the below essay draft and suggest any corrections.




Accountability is essential to the development of Pakistan.

Outline:

1. Introduction
2. Understanding term accountability
3. Types of Accountability
a. Political Accountability
b. Ethical Accountability
c. Administrative Accountability
d. Economic Accountability
4. Situation of Accountability in Pakistan
5. Role of Accountability in Development of Pakistan
a. Hurdles & Recommendations
6. Conclusion

In ethics and governance, accountability is answerability, blameworthiness, liability, and the expectation of account-giving. As an aspect of governance, it has been central to discussions related to problems in the public sector, nonprofit and private (corporate) and individual contexts. In leadership roles, accountability is the acknowledgment and assumption of responsibility for actions, products, decisions, and policies including the administration, governance, and implementation within the scope of the role or employment position and encompassing the obligation to report, explain and be answerable for resulting consequences.

Irrespective of the language, culture or social norms of a specific region, there are certain integral values that remain unchanged across borders and divides. For instance, nowhere in the world have we ever seen masses demanding widespread anarchy and disorder; on the contrary, world over people want a functional system of governance to maintain rule of law in the society. Accordingly, it seems safe to assume that to see order and stability in the society is something that is inherent to all human beings. It is this integral need that propels us all to rally behind political leaders, cheer for them during processions and vote for them during elections – all the time hoping that the leader of our choice will bring prosperity once s/he is in power. However, our desire to see betterment in the society is not time bound and so it does not cease to exist upon casting the vote. This desire continues even after a new government is in place, driving us to scrutinize policies and actions of our governments and leaders. It is this drive for constant improvement in the environment around us that gives rise to another integral value that people across the world hold dear: accountability.

Accountability, by many, is considered the fourth leg of the metaphorical chair of good governance. It helps the masses to evaluate the effectiveness of public officials and public offices, ensures that they are performing to their full potential and ensures that at any given point in time there is enough public pressure on the political leaders to be responsive to the community they are meant to serve.

Accountability appears in various facets while talking about a country;
Political accountability is the accountability of the government, civil servants and politicians to the public and to legislative bodies such as a congress or a parliament.

Ethical Accountability - Within an organization, the principles and practices of ethical accountability aim to improve both the internal standard of individual and group conduct as well as external factors, such as sustainable economic and ecologic strategies.

Administrative accountability - Internal rules and norms as well as some independent commission are mechanisms to hold civil servants within the administration of government accountable. Within department or ministry, firstly, behavior is bound by rules and regulations; secondly, civil servants are subordinates in a hierarchy and accountable to superiors. Nonetheless, there are independent "watchdog" units to scrutinize and hold departments accountable; legitimacy of these commissions is built upon their independence, as it avoids any conflicts of interests.

Economic Accountability -

In Pakistan there are a number of institutions whose sole or partial purpose is to ensure that the government and its officials run the affairs of the state as transparently as possible. There are also specialized institutions where general people can lodge a complaint or register a concern that we might have regarding the functioning of the government. Most of us here in Pakistan are well aware of the National Accountability Bureau (NAB). With its offices in all the major cities of the country, NAB is Pakistan’s apex anti-corruption organization. Any and every Pakistani citizen is eligible to approach NAB with evidence against guilty government office holders, whether political or bureaucratic. The icing on the cake for the informer is that if the corrupt official is convicted because of his/her tip, NAB will also reward him/her!

While NAB is the primary government organization entrusted with the task of ensuring transparency, other public institutions include Public Accounts Committee, the Judicial Commission, Election Commission of Pakistan, Ombudsman institutions, the Federal Investigation Agency and various provincial agencies. For economic governance, there is another set of institutions: the State Bank of Pakistan, the Competition Commission of Pakistan and the Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan.

Pakistan has 12 independent ombudsman institutions representing general and specific mandates at both federal and provincial levels, such as taxation, workplace harassment, insurance and banking. All of them are members of the Forum of Pakistan Ombudsman (FPO) – a non-political network, operating for the advancement of good governance across Pakistan by sharing knowledge, building capacity for institutional effectiveness and raising awareness about these institutions. The promulgation of the Ombudsman Institutional Reform Act 2013 gave OIs administrative and financial autonomy, and provides a strong framework to support effective implementation of Ombudsman’s decisions.
The Federal Ombudsman (FO) has processed about 1.07 million complaints over the course of its 30-year existence, including some high profile cases (e.g. maladministration causing an outbreak of measles; extraordinary delays in issuing Machine Readable Passports; and the nonpayment of pensions). Last year, the FO decided 64,000 cases, of which less than 1% complainants have filed review petitions, and the implementation rate on decided cases stands at 90%. Though complaints are received from both genders however, only 11% are from women. Sector-wise, the majority are from Water and Power Development Authority, Sui-Northern Gas Pipelines Ltd., Pakistan Telecommunications Company Ltd., and Allama Iqbal Open University.

Apart from government organizations mentioned above, the Parliament itself is one of the most important structures in the ‘chain of accountability’. The Parliament does not merely form the bridge between people and the government but its role is also critical because it is also the institution to which many accountability institutions report. Moreover, a Parliament and its elected representatives are important vehicles through which citizens and civic groups can also extract enforcement of various laws and policies.

However, there are still significant weaknesses in these institutions. The biggest is low capacity, making it difficult to implement the new law as the institutions are not being able to meet the performance standards, lacking necessary human and technological resources to address complaints.

In order to improve the situation of accountability in Pakistan, following steps can be taken:

• Availability of the budget information both at the time of allocation and consistently throughout the spending process
• Opportunity for local communities to participate in the budgeting process
• Independent and effective oversight and audit institutions
• Assisting government institutions in establishing effective mechanisms for pre-budget consultations to enhance public participation in the decision-making process.
• Supporting efforts for effective and timely dissemination of the budget information among local communities.
• Supporting transition to output-based budgeting to enhance the efficiency of government spending by delineating clear targets for improvements in service delivery based on public opinion.
• Continuous monitoring of the expenditure to analyze its impact on service delivery outcomes and on people’s well-being.

The promise of this future lies in an entire generation standing-up for accountability and holding those in power responsible for their actions. This is not easy, of course, but it is essential for the survival of our country
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Old Sunday, December 24, 2017
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I read your outline only. As per my opinion your essay is irrelevant only no 5 is relevant. the essay says accountability is essential for Pakistan development. you have given detail/ types of accountability but not on how essential it is for Pakistan development. you should relate the accountability to Pakistan development.
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