Rabbani opposes new province

Published Feb 21, 2013 09:03pm

— File Photo by Online
— File Photo by Online

ISLAMABAD: Senator Raza Rabbani, a PPP leader and Chairman of the Parliamentary Committee on National Security, has warned against creation of a new province and has said that taking such a step without national dialogue is a recipe for destabilisation.

In a note of dissent on the 24th constitution amendment bill as a member of the Senate Standing Committee on Law and Justice, he said creation of a province would aggravate the national, ethnic and linguistic issues on the question of natural resources.

“It is correct that on the national or ethno-linguistic basis, certain regions may have a historically legitimate claim of being called a province, but I am of the firm view that this is not the opportune time. I concede that in these regions this will be a political slogan for the elections, but national decisions are based on firmer reasoning,” the PPP leader said in the note attached to the committee’s report presented in the Senate on Thursday.

He said the political situation was fluid, polarised and plagued by terrorism, extremism, sectarianism and regionalism. There were forces of extreme nationalist, particularly in Balochistan, working for arrangements outside the scheme of the Constitution, he said, adding that such elements would be encouraged by creation of a new province. The nationalist forces whose politics have been adversely affected by the 18th Amendment will get a new impetus.

Mr Rabbani said that if new provinces were to be created on the basis of administrative necessity, the entire federal structure would need to be revisited. “Existing provinces will also come under the knife. Will the people allow this,” he asked. Apart from sharpening the national and ethno-linguistic question, there would be a severe political backlash, he said.

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Comments (7) (Closed)

A Subhan
Feb 22, 2013 12:18pm
Thank you very much... Senator Rabbani, for speaking up about this important matter.... You are 100% right that the creation of new provinces at this time, without national consensus, is a perfect recipe for disaster....
Muhammad Arshad
Feb 22, 2013 06:15am
Dear Senator Rabbani, I want to thank you for your candid, honest, and ‘above politics’ views. I only wish there were more people like you in this country of ours. I am neither for, nor against the creation of a new province but have had exactly the same concerns in my mind, the concerns that you have so rightly expressed. Sitting far away, the likes of me watch helplessly what is happening in our country and to our people. It is a bit comforting to see there is someone, at least someone, who puts the interest of the country above the politics. I just want to say, “Thank You”.
Feb 22, 2013 05:06am
Good man. He is right. He is one of the few good people PPP has.
Feb 22, 2013 04:45am
Atleast some is talking sence...
Feb 22, 2013 03:06am
Only sane voice left in the PPP.
Feb 22, 2013 02:55am
Rabbani makes so much sense. Why can't he prevail on his party's leadership?
Cyrus Howell
Feb 22, 2013 02:07am
A recipe for destabilisation? That cake is already in the oven.