KARACHI, Jan 3: Almost halfway into current financial year, the Sindh government has so far spent only Rs23.57 billon from its revised total development outlay of Rs181bn against the Rs231bn annual development programme in the budget for 2012-13, exposing the government’s glaring inefficiency.

This fact surfaced at a meeting of the planning and development and finance departments which was held to review progress of the ongoing development schemes at the CM House on Thursday.

The schemes are being executed under special packages, MPAs and MNAs development programme and ADP projects.

The meeting was informed that the total development outlay for the year was revised from Rs231bn to Rs181bn due to economic constraints after massive funds had to be diverted to provide relief to the thousands of families affected by the rains and floods. However, of the slashed ADP of Rs181bn only Rs53.85bn was released, and even that amount could not be fully used.

Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah, presiding over the meeting, directed the authorities concerned to expedite the pace of work on all near-completion development schemes, in particular under the special package, MPAs and MNAs development programme, so the maximum number of projects were completed by the end of Feb 2013 to help the people.

Analysts maintain that if the past nine-month performance is kept in view, the government’s capacity of utilising the remaining released funds judiciously appears to be woefully limited.

According to a press release issued after the meeting, the chief minister stressed the need for an early allocation of funds to complete the development schemes. He also directed the P&D and finance departments to monitor the progress and judicious use of funds of the under-implementation schemes.

He also asked them to provide up-to-date reports on development schemes to the information department for their inclusion in brochures depicting five-year performance and achievements of the elected government.

Additional chief secretary (development) Israr Malik informed the meeting that the total development outlay for 2012-13 was Rs231bn, whilethe allocation was Rs181bn. Out of the amount, so far Rs53.85bn had been released while Rs23.57bn was spent.

Of the Rs23.57bn, major funds were spent on the sectors of education, health, transport, industries, culture, sports, agriculture, food, livestock, fisheries, communication, irrigation, coal & energy and housing.

The meeting was informed that during the current financial year, of the allocated Rs45,222 million, Rs18,670m had been spent while Rs2,190.767m had been spent from the Rs7,729.473m released for the MPAs priority programme.

It was further said that under the special package programme, of the allocated Rs10,600m, Rs835.927m had so far been spent while under the special initiatives (water hubs), of the allocated Rs8,561.420m so far Rs2,218.031m had been spent and of the Rs4,860.530m allocated for information technology, Rs208.605m had been spent from the released Rs915.176m. Likewise, of the Rs3,272.406m allocated for the special project, Rs714.750m had been spent.

The meeting was attended among others by additional chief secretary (P&D) Israr Malik, additional chief secretary (finance) Arif Ahmed Khan; principal secretary to the CM Muhammad Siddique Memon; special secretary (P&D) Dr Noorul Haq and special secretary (finance) Aijaz Ahmed Khan.

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