Sunday, August 11, 2013

Selangor local councils meetings LIVE on websites, plus minutes - Good job Teng Chang Kim in moving towards transparency and accountability

Many have been calling for Local Council Elections, and that was a Pakatan Rakyat election commitment in 2008 - but still Councillors are being appointed using a BN formula - where it is members of PR parties that sit in Local Councils, save a small number of persons from 'civil society'

Transparency and accountability was also not there in the PR-State ruled Local Councils. No minutes. No public access to Loacl Council meetings (and meetings of the various committees), which provided by law should be open to the public.

All meetings of the local authority shall be open to the public and to representatives of the Press…” where it continues with an unless, being “…unless the local authority by resolution at the meeting otherwise decides…”.  - Section 23 of the Local Government Act 1976

No accounts - how much income? How was the monies being spent? Are the Local Council still spending a lot of monies for 'overseas trips', uniforms and other perks for the Local Councillors.

But of late, in Selangor, there is some positive movement, as announced by Teng Chang Kim, i.e. Local Council meetings will be broadcast live, and minutes will finally be made available...A move in the right direction, and hope it will continue...

8 Selangor local councils to broadcast monthly board meetings on websites

14 June 2013| last updated at 06:05PM 

SHAH ALAM: Local councils in Selangor will broadcast live telecast of its monthly board meetings on their websites by Aug 30 this year. Local Government and Research state executive councillor Datuk Teng Chang Khim said Selangor would be the first state in Malaysia to do so, in line with the Freedom of Information Act passed by the state assembly in 2011. 

"A lot of people have said they do not know what is happening within our local councils so this is a good way for people to understand the running of the council, its programmes and its successes," Teng said after visiting Shah Alam City Council today. 

He said eight local councils were given till Aug 30 to install hardware such as cameras and upgrade their software for live broadcast on the respective councils' websites. 

The meeting minutes will also be published on the websites

The eight local involved are the Ampang Jaya Municipal Council (MPAJ), Klang Municipal Council (MPK), Kajang Municipal Council (MPKj), Petaling Jaya City Council (MBPJ), Selayang Municipal Council (MPS), Sepang Municipal Council (MPSp), Shah Alam City Council (MBSA) and Subang Jaya Municipal Council (MPSJ). 

THe Hulu Selangor District Council, Hulu Langat District Council, Kuala Langat District Council and Sabak Bernam District Council will carry out the plan at a later time as these councils lacked funds, Teng said. 

The move to broadcast the meetings, he added, was to ensure friendlier, accountable and transparent local councils and was part of a five year action plan proposed by the state government.  - New Straits Times, 14/6/2013,  8 Selangor local councils to broadcast monthly board meetings on websites

Local Government Election Bill will be tabled in 2014

SHAH ALAM (July 1, 2013): The Selangor government is drafting the Local Government Election Bill to be tabled in the state legislative assembly in 2014.

Selangor is the second state to announce its intention to introduce the Bill after Penang which will see the state councillors being voted. 

According to Selangor state exco in charge of local councils Teng Chang Khim, the move will restore the democratic rights of citizens in the state.

Teng however did not disclose whether the state government will work with the Election Commission to conduct local government election in Selangor.

"We may use a different mechanism so we need to pass the Bill first before we cross the bridge," he said.

He added that the local government election is different it will not contradict the Federal Constitution or the Local Government Act.

Teng, who is the Sungai Pinang assemblyman, said this in response to R. Rajiv (DAP-Bukit Gasing) during the Selangor state assembly seating today.

Teng however said that the local election will not be held across the state simultaneously.

"We might hold the election at two municipal councils at once as a test run," he added.

According to Teng, the proposed Bill is not something new as local elections were held in some states after merdeka.

 "It is not new anymore. We are just merely returning democracy to the people," he said. - Sun Daily, 1/7/2013, Local Government Election Bill will be tabled in 2014

See related post:-

If Nurul Izzah can do it in less than a month, surely Selangor government can table the Local Government Election Bill in 2013 - not 2014

The struggle for Local Council elections continues...but real reforms can be done without waiting for court rulings and law changes

Selangor not keen on Local Councilors chosen by the people - they prefer to appoint. A new attempt to pacify LC Elections advocates..

Coalition for Good Governance(CGG) Media Statement on Local Council Elections

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