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PESHAWAR: Chief Minister Pervez Khattak has said that Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government will move the court against Election Commission of Pakistan’s decision placing ban on fresh recruitment and new development schemes.

Addressing a press conference here on Sunday, he said that several people had already challenged the ECP’s decision in the Peshawar High Court. “How such an important institution can take an unconstitutional decision,” he questioned.

Mr Khattak said that ban on new appointments, development schemes and allocation of funds for uplift projects was unconstitutional. “Several people have approached the court and the government will also challenge the ECP’s decision,” he said while responding to a question.

Khattak terms ECP’s decision unconstitutional

Regarding budget for the year 2018-19, he said that PTI government would not present the budget. He said that the new government would announce the budget. He said that federal government would present budget for political gains, but provincial government would not follow the centre.

Mr Khattak said that PTI had opposed presentation of the federal budget. He said that there was provision in the Constitution that caretaker government could prepare budget for four months. He said that elected governments in the centre and provinces would take over in July or August and would announce budgets.

To another question, Mr Khattak said that several names for the slot of caretaker chief minister in the province were under-consideration. He said that opposition leader Maulana Lutfur Rehman had yet to contact him for discussion on the appointment of caretaker chief minister. He said that he would soon contact parliamentary leaders in that regard.

About involvement of PTI lawmakers in horse-trading in the Senate polls, the chief minister said that inquiry committee had completed its work and action would be taken against 14 MPAs within the next few days.

When asked delay in completion of Peshawar Bus Rapid Transport (BRT), he said that it was one of the world unique projects, which was being completed in the shortest possible time.

Mr Khattak said that metro projects had never been completed within year anywhere in the world including Dubai. He said that he might inaugurate a portion of BRT if the entire project was not completed within six months. He said that political rivals were trying to misguide people about the project.

According to the original plan, completion time of BRT was six months and it was to be opened on April 19. But changes in design and other issues caused delay. The chief minister said that debris along the BRT route would be removed in few days for the convenience of commuters.

ALLIANCE: PTI and senior leader of PML-N Saleem Saifullah Khan have entered into electoral alliance in Lakki Marwat district.

Chief Minister Pervez Khattak and Saleem Saifullah Khan made announcement at a joint press conference in this regard. Under the agreement, PTI would support Mr Saifullah in the election from NA-36 (Lakki Marwat.) The veteran politician will support PTI candidates on three seats of provincial assembly.

PTI has planned to allot provincial assembly tickets to Dr Hasham Inamullah Khan, Ashfaq Khan and Sher Afzal Khan. Saleem Saifullah said that he would contest election as independent candidate with the support of PTI.

Former Senator Saifullah and others had formed their own faction of PML (Like Minded) after parting ways with PML-Q. Later the group was merged with PML-N. He said that his younger brother Anwar Saifullah, who had served as provincial president of PPP, would not contest next election.

Saleem Saifullah had lost election from Lakki Marwat against JUI-F chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman in 2013. Later PTI candidate retired Col Ameerullah won the seat in by-election with the support of Saifullah family.

He said that he had entered into alliance with PTI during the local government elections in 2015. He said that his supporter was elected district nazim while PTI candidate won the slot of deputy nazim.

Saleem Saifullah said that southern districts were ignored in China-Pakistan Economic Corridor. He also expressed reservations over construction of Kurram Tangi Dam that would affect his district.

Published in Dawn, April 16th, 2018