The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) says that local governments around the world are at the forefront of the current Covid-19 crisis, but in Pakistan these institutions are to an extent disconnected from its citizens and “saddled with a governance style which is top down, reactive and authoritative”.
This has led to the weakening of the essential state-society social contract leading to marginalisation, group grievances and conflict and social resilience in the country, UNDP says in its first ‘Covid-19 — Pakistan Socio-economic Impact Assessment and Response Plan’.
Despite efforts to provide an adequate response to the pandemic in Pakistan, results remain poor. Traders and businessmen are dissatisfied by the federal government’s unilateral decisions affecting their businesses. Similarly, the medical health professionals are highlighting the unavailability of PPE (personal protective equipment) and the lack of an efficient system of testing and tracking.