20 September, 2014 / Ziqa'ad 24, 1435

LAHORE, May 29: Incoming prime minister Nawaz Sharif said on Wednesday that after assuming power his government would end ‘unannounced loadshedding’ as the first step in resolving the energy crisis faced by the country.

Presiding over a meeting of senior party leaders and energy sector experts at his Raiwind residence on Wednesday, Mr Sharif said all resources would be used to contain the crisis.

“The PML-N government will have to work day and night to rid the country of this menace,” Mr Sharif said, adding that difficult decisions would have to be taken to address challenges the country was facing today.

He has already made it clear that there is no quick fix solution to the energy crisis and the people needed to demonstrate patience.

Several other proposals were also discussed at the meeting.

The leaders also decided that development funds would not be frozen to address the issue of loadshedding. Earlier there was a proposal from some party members that development funds of lawmakers should be frozen for at least two years and the amount be used to contain loadshedding.

Mr Sharif’s close aides are reported to have disagreed with the proposal of freezing development funds of lawmakers.

The meeting also discussed short-term measures of seeking help from friendly countries to reduce the effects of the energy crisis and long-term indigenous plans to resolve the issue.

Mr Sharif said all resources would be used to end the crisis.

The meeting suggested that no subsidy and relief should be given to the people in the forthcoming budget and funds should be diverted to the energy sector.

The meeting discussed a proposal put forward by a senior member of the party that ministers should not be allowed to have flags on their vehicles.

Besides, the size of federal and Punjab cabinets should not be more than 25, and 32 members, respectively.

The proposal of reducing the protocol of the prime minister and the Punjab chief minister was also discussed.

Ishaq Dar, Khawaja Asif, Pervaiz Rashid, Sartaj Aziz, Ahsan Iqbal, Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan and Mian Mansha attended the meeting.


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