“The new Action Plan of the Programme for the Reform of the Local Self-Government System in the Republic of Serbia shall contribute to the creation of a better environment for people to live and work in, as well as to strengthening the capacities of cities and municipalities”, was the message from the first meeting of the Special Working Group for the preparation of the aforementioned document, which will cover the period from 2024 to 2025.
The Minister of Public Administration and Local Self-Government, Aleksandar Martinović, PhD, has pointed out that the new Action Plan will be harmonized with the requirements of the modern age and the real needs of the citizens, especially bearing in mind that past experiences and numerous analyses conducted by the Ministry have shown that there are certain inequalities in the capacities of cities and municipalities. He added that he visits two to three local self-governments per week, that he communicates directly with citizens and local leadership, and is thus directly aware of the situation on the ground. As he has said, some local self-governments do not always manage to perform all tasks in the most effective manner, while others have a high level of development and can take on a larger volume of work and more difficult tasks without any difficulties.
“Citizens exercise most of their rights at the local level, and their satisfaction depends precisely on the quality of work of the local self-government, which is why it must apply the principles of good governance and contribute to the uniform development of all parts of Serbia through its actions. Building a modern and professional, efficient and responsible local self-government, which provides services of the same quality to citizens and the economy in every part of the country, is our core vision,” Martinović has stressed.
The minister has pointed out that there was no common public policy at the local level until the adoption of the Programme for the Reform of the Local Self-Government System two years ago, when it received a defined direction of development with specific goals of modernizing cities and municipalities and achieving the highest standard and quality of life for all citizens. Martinović has said that local self-governments are not alone on this reform path, because in addition to the departmental Ministry of Public Administration and Local Self-Government, support is also provided by other state bodies, as well as by the non-governmental sector, the expert community and the international community.
The advancement of cities and municipalities necessarily implies more efficient monitoring of the situation and supervision in areas within the scope of work of state bodies, as well as stronger partnership and better mutual communication between the local and national levels, where the participation of the Local Self-Government Units themselves is key,” Martinović has concluded.
At today’s meeting, the members of the Working Group were presented with the Programme for the Reform of the Local Self-Government System in the Republic of Serbia for the period from 2021-2025 and the Action Plan for the period from 2021-2023, as well as the details about the drafting of the Action Plan for the period from 2024-2025.
The drafting of a new Action Plan is one of the main tasks of the project “Local Self-Government for the 21st Century”, which is supported by the Swiss Government.
Photo gallery – source: Tanjug